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In your job search process, you may be required to write various job search letters in addition to providing your resume. All the letters you write will give organizations an impression of you and, quite often, a letter is the first contact between you and a prospective employer. Therefore, it is important to plan the content, use an appropriate format, and proofread carefully.
There are several types of letters which you may use in a job search. In the examples ahead, you will find job search letters that can be used when first contacting an employer regarding a position, such as cover letters, inquiry letters, and networking letters. For follow-up letters, please refer to the Business Correspondence section of this guide.
Here are some things to remember as you write a job search letter:
- Write a targeted cover letter for each employer and position.
- State in the first sentence why you are writing.
- Show that your career goals are aligned with both the position and the organization.
- Make your points concise; every point should support your readiness to contribute.
- If writing to a female, use "Ms." rather than "Mrs." to maintain business professionalism; if she is a doctor, use "Dr."
- Use the same font that you used for your resume to keep it cohesive; be sure the font is simple, easily-read, and is 10 to 12 point in size.
- End your letter with a business professional closing such as "Sincerely," "Respectfully," or "Regards."
- Proofread for typos and accuracy of contact information; have several people review it.
- Your letter should not be more than one page.
- Encourage the employer to contact you. Include contact information and sign your name at the end of the letter.
- If you are mailing your cover letter, include the word "Enclosure" at the end to indicate that your resume is enclosed.