Includes material from Kitty Locker, Business and Administrative Communication, 6th ed. (Boston: McGraw-Hill/Irwin, 2003)
Checklist for Job Letters
- Include your address, the company address, and the date.
- Address the letter to a specific person at the company, including his or her job title; do not use “To whom it may concern” or “Mr. President.”
- Use first paragraph to demonstrate that you possess the major credentials (if a specific job was advertised) or to capture the reader’s interest (if no job was advertised).
- Use the second paragraph to focus on your relevant skills and experience.
- Use the final paragraph to requests an interview and/or to relate when you are available for it.
- Refer to your resume if it is enclosed or attached.
- Use a professional close, such as “Sincerely.”
- Use first paragraph to specify which position you are applying for and to discuss how you learned about the job.
- Include your contact information.
- Tailor the letter to the specific company and position to which you are applying.
- Exhibit specific knowledge of the company.
- Use keywords and terms from the field.
- Make sure that the details you provide support your qualifications for the position, and that there is a clear link between your experience and what you could contribute to the company in the future.
- Make sure your content sets you apart from other applicants.
- Conclude in a positive way.
- Make your text visually fill the page (if you need to, list courses or references, or add “Summary of Qualifications”).
- Make your name easy to read – large font, surrounded by white space.
- Make headings clear and easy to skim – bold rather than all caps or italicized
Style and Mechanics
- List duties and accomplishments in parallel structure.
- Do not use I.
- List jobs in reverse chronological order (starting with most recent).
- On any subsequent pages, put your name and page 2.
- Avoid typos and other errors.