How to Write an Application Letter

Should the time come for you to write an application letter, be it for college admission, graduate studies and most importantly for employment, you need to have the right knowledge on how to do it effectively and flawlessly. Not only does it presents pertinent information and data about you as an applicant, it also helps market you as a competent candidate for whatever you are applying for.

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An application letter is a cover letter, a sales letter, and a marketing tool all in one. It usually accompanies a professional resume or CV and is commonly used when applying for a job. Its main purpose is to get an applicant a chance to be interviewed and ultimately to help the applicant be offered the job. Ideally, it should not be more than one page in length; it should be organized logically so that the main points are discussed clearly while maintaining the brevity of the entire document.

Contents of an Application Letter

This formal letter is one of the most important letters in your life. It can get you to your dream university, get you that dream job you’ve had since you were a kid or a chance to get an investment for your dream business. This letter can do you more good than harm when written correctly. Listed below are the contents you should include in your winning application letter:

  1. Return Address
  2. Date
  3. Inside Address
  4. Appropriate Salutation
  5. Body of the Letter
    • Direct and clear introduction
    • Evidence that supports the claim or objectives
    • Convincing concluding statement
  6. Apt Complimentary Close
  7. Signature Line
  8. List of Attachment

If you prefer to not include a list of your attachment, you can incorporate in the body of your letter. However, you have to make sure the transition of your attachment is seamless with the rest of the content in your letter. You may also see job application letter examples.

How to Write an Application Letter

1. Identify Your Reader

Your application letter should be addressed to the hiring manager of the company or the admission committee chairman of a university. The name of the person-in-charge along with his or her contact information should be indicated in the inside address. In the salutation of your application, you can use his or her first or last name. It should also be included in the top line of your envelope.

Remember that people do business with people first, businesses second. It is only right and professional to address the individual by name as this way you recognize the importance of the person and his or her designation. Aside from that, when you have a clear idea of who the person-in-charge is, you can easily tailor and write your letter in a professional tone.

2. Establish Your Objective

The main purpose as to why you are writing an application in the first pace is to introduce yourself and attract the attention of the employer. It acts as your cover letter, it provides enough relevant information and should ultimately help you convince your audience to grant you an interview. Therefore, your application letter must also be effectively written in order to clearly present the objective that you have in mind.

It should openly indicate that you are interested in the company or the type of work the company offers. This letter is your opportunity to present your knowledge with the position being offered. Mention specific qualifications which make you a good fit for the employer’s needs. In addition, this is your chance to briefly explain the contents of your resume. More importantly, your application letter must emphasize that you are in fact a suitable candidate for the position. You may also like email cover letter examples.

3. Determine Your Scope

With accordance to the objectives you have with your application letter, the scope of your letter must be determined. As mentioned, ultimately the main goal is to convince the employer to grant you an interview, therefore, you must be specific about what you want. Briefly, include information with regard to the following:

  • A specific job title
  • A desired area of employment
  • Source of job lead
  • Educational background
  • Work experience
  • Leadership activities
  • Specialized training

You may also see business proposal letter examples.

4. Organize Your Letter

You want your potential employer to easily understand the objective of your letter as well as the information you have presented. You must organize your letter in a logical manner; it is important to maintain coherence with your sentences and the details you include. Since you have already established your objective and identified your scope, you can refer back to them and determine which comes first and what to put in last. You may also see internship cover letter examples.

You can start with an outline of the contents of your letter, this way you can easily pinpoint where to insert the details. Begin by making a list of the points that you want present in your letter and arrange them in a sequential order according to what’s more important and relevant, and what order will best help your reader to understand your letter. This points will be the basis for your draft and the outline will be your simple checklist.

5. Draft Your Letter

Your application can either make or break your chances of getting an interview with your employer, therefore writing it must be taken seriously. As mentioned above, your outline will be your guide and checklist for writing your application letter. Based on how to organize your final letter to the outline, turn each point into full and complete sentences that express a single thought or idea. You may also see appointment letter examples & samples.

Writing in a natural sounding voice will ensure that you are writing your letter in a cohesive manner. Concentrate on relaying your objective when writing your draft and make sure that the scope of your letter has all the relevant information included.

Remember that you are writing a rough draft. You can ignore some errors spelling, grammar, punctuation, sentence and paragraph structure. Those can be corrected on your final step. After writing your draft, you can read out loud so that you can check if your letter sounds interesting and cohesive. You may also like complaint letter examples & samples.

6. Close Your Letter

Since the sections above focus on the content or body of the letter, make sure that you also perfect the necessary contents of a letter. After you are done and satisfied with the body of your application letter and have written your conclusion, formally close your letter with complimentary closings used in business letters or professional letters. These closings can be sincerely, respectfully, yours truly, yours sincerely, etc.

In addition, remember to include your printed name and affix your signature at the bottom part of the letter. Placed beneath the title line is additional information such as dictation remarks, notification of attachments, enclosures, and copies sent to other individuals.

7. Review and Revise Your Application Letter

Since you have started with a rough draft, make sure that you proofread or review your draft. You can then replace information that you think is irrelevant or incoherent with the other information you have presented, you can also add information that you think is a winning factor in your letter. You might be interested in acknowledgment letter examples & samples.

As you review and revise your letter, keep in mind to keep your information and the overall content coherent with each other. Your information should complement each other so that you can gain your potential employer’s interest.

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