Employment Letter of Application

Begin this task on a separate page in the same MSWord file. You can do this by using the Insert / Break / Page Break function in MSWord.

Now that you have found a suitable position, it’s time to apply by writing a one page, properly organized and formatted letter of application.

Tip 1: Review Your Textbook and Sample Letters for Ideas

Tip 2: Select the Correct Letter Format

  • Be sure to include your email address, return address, and signature block.
  • Avoid addressing your letter to “Whom It May Concern,” Dear Prospective Employer,” or “Dear Sir/Madame.” I realize your book has an example of a letter addressed to Dear Hiring Manager; however, the American Management Association recommends writers use
    • the simplified letter format (Simplified Letter Format can be found in Module 9) if you are uncertain of a recipient’s name. If the name of the recipient is provided in the advertisement or if you know the name of the recipient, you may use the modified block format (The Modified Block Format can be found in Module 7).
  • If your job posting does not list an address or a name, it is permissible to incorporate one of the addressees listed above, such as “To Whom it May Concern,” “Dear Sir/Madam”, etc.\
  • Similarly, if there is no physical address to mail an application, and you are left with no choice but to send an application via email, search for the main address of the company headquarters in a search engine and include it in your cover letter.

Tip 3: Use Appropriate Language

Avoid repeated use of “I” and abstract language such as “think”, “feel”, “wish”, or “hope” in your letter.

I think I would make a great candidate…

I hope you like my resumé….

I wish I had more skills, but….

Rather, adopt the you view (write from the reader’s point of view), indicate how your skills and qualifications will benefit the organization and its customers. and use courteous language.

Your position advertised on your company’s website is an excellent fit with my qualifications.

My background includes a bachelor’s degree in marketing and three years of administrative experience that could be used to benefit your organization.

Please contact me at your convenience to schedule an interview.

Additional Examples of Appropriate Language

Tip 4: Proofread Your Letter

Check for format, content, grammar, and punctuation “mis-steaks.”

Organization of The Letter of Application for This Assignment

  • Heading/Date/Inside Address: If you are writing a traditional (not email) letter, select a standard business-letter format such as block style, modified block, or simplified. Your letter’s design should match your resumé (See example below).
  • Salutation: It’s best to address your letter to a specific person (e.g., “Dear Ms. Jones:”). Avoid stale salutations such as “Dear Sir/Madam:” and “To Whom it May Concern:”
  • Opening (One Paragraph): Hiring managers are busy and do not care to wade through fluff. Your opening paragraph should clearly state the position for which you’re applying. Include a reference code if requested and the referral source (e.g., recommendation from a current employee, Monster, etc.). Your opening may also include a synopsis of why you are a top candidate for the position:
  • Your position advertised on Monster is an excellent fit with my qualifications, as the enclosed resumé will attest. My background includes 10 years of success managing international sales programs, top-ranked regions and Fortune 500 accounts. I offer particular expertise in the high-tech sector, with in-depth knowledge of networking technology…
  • Body (One or Two Paragraphs): Your letter’s body contains your sales pitch. In one or two paragraphs, this is your chance to outline the top reasons why you’re worthy of an interview.

Before deciding what to include in the body of this letter, review the job advertisement and the qualifications you highlighted and/or underlined. Weave these qualifications into the body of your letter, perhaps as a bulleted list.

Back up achievements with specific examples of how your performance benefited current and former employers. Precede your bulleted list with a statement such as “Highlights of my credentials include:” or “Key strengths I offer include:”

When writing the body text, keep in mind that hiring managers are self-centered –they want to know what you can do for them, not learn about your life story. Demonstrate how your credentials, motivation and track record would benefit their operation.

Keep your letter positive and upbeat. This is not the place to write a sob story about your employment situation. Put yourself in the hiring manager’s shoes — would you call yourself in for an interview?

  • Closing (One Paragraph): Your final paragraph should generate a call for action, so express your strong interest in an interview and request an interview. Do not establish parameters for when and how you can be contacted such as. “Please contact me after 5:00pm but before 9:00pm on June 3.” Would you hire this person?
  • Signature Block: Depending on the format of the letter you have selected (block, modified, or simplified), create the signature block appropriately.

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