Sample Job Application Letter:
Specimen Letter (1): This first letter is from a recent school-leaver seeking his first post. It was written in response to this advertisement which he spotted in his local newspaper:
TRAINEE ACCOUNTS CLERK/BOOK-KEEPER
Required for busy accounts department
Good general education essential, and training will be given. The successful applicant, aged between 16 and 19, will be required to undertake studies to prepare for professional examinations.
This is a permanent position with a good starting salary and excellent prospects for the right person. The position will suit a school-leaver or a person with some knowledge of accounts.
Apply in own handwriting, giving details of age, education, etc., to:
The Chief Account,
Garm & Grant Ltd.,
166/8 Sand Street,
10A Keren Road,
25th July 20..
The Chief Accountant,
Garm & Grant Ltd.,
166/8 Sand Street,
Having read your advertisement in this morning’s ‘Standard’, I would like to be considered for the post of trainee accounts clerk/book-keeper in your accounts department, as you stated that the post is suitable for a school-leaver and that training will be given.
I am 17 years old, and recently left Telsford High School after sitting my Secondary Certificate examination. I am still awaiting the results of the examination, but I enclose a copy of my final school report in which my headmaster states that I should receive credits in at least English language, mathematics and accounts, and that I should pass the other subjects I sat. The examination results will not be announced until the end of next month or early September.
Since leaving school I have embarked on home studies on book-keeping & accounts and economics, and am making satisfactory progress. I plan in due course to sit examinations for certificates in the two subjects, and would be very happy to continue studies on them and on others whilst in your employ, and to prepare for the examinations you require.
I have no work experience, but hope that the knowledge I have already gained from studies could be put into practice working for you, and supplemented by your training. I am very keen to start working in accounts and book-keeping, and I assure you that my work will be neat and accurate. I can also assure you that I shall do my very best to become a loyal and hard working member of your staff, and that I am quick and willing to learn.
I shall be very grateful if you will call me for an interview. I can bring with me to show you any documents that you might care to see.
Note carefully the following points about the letter:-
1. It is neatly and attractively laid out, and easy to read, especially as there is additional space between each of the paragraphs.
2. Each paragraph deal with one ‘type’ of information and contains ‘related’ facts:
(a) The first paragraph explains why he, Swan, has written to the chief accountant, that is, the letter is in response to the advertisement for a trainee accounts clerk/book-keeper (see also No.7, below);
(b)The second paragraph contains brief information about Swan and his educational background;
(c)The third paragraph tell what Swan has done since he left school – he has, at his own expense, embarked on studies relevant to the post, which is a point likely to appeal to the chief accountant – and that he plans to sit examinations in any case;
(d)The fourth paragraph explains why, although he has no experience, Swan feels that he is the right person for whom the chief accountant is looking, and contains information which Swan hopes will arouse interest in him;
(e)The fifth and final paragraph asks for Swan to be called for an interview, during which he can produce originals of any documents.
3. Swan has given his full address, and also his home telephone number. If you have a telephone – or have a friend or relation who does, and who would be willing to take a message for you – it is always useful to mention it in application letters (and forms). However, it is best if you have your own personal website, this will definitely impact on the employer. Create your free website now.
Many busy executives and their secretaries/assistants would much rather reach for the telephone that have to draft, type, check, sign and post letters; however, so that all suitable applicants are given equal treatment, frequently all are sent letters.
4. Swan wrote the designation (The Chief Accountant) and the full name and address of the employing organization in his letter – the same will, of course, appear on the envelope in which it is sent. He started the letter with a respectful ‘Dear Sir’ (to a lady he would have written ‘Dear Madam’; had a name been mentioned in the advertisement, he could have written ‘Dear Mr. Willis’, or ‘Dear Mrs. Smith’ or ‘Dear Miss Kariuki’, etc. If only the name of the organization had been given, Swan should have started his letter with ‘Dear Sirs’, – note the additional ‘s’, plural).
5. Swan finished his letter with an equally respectful ‘Yours faithfully,’ (note the capital ‘Y’ but small ‘f’, and the comma after faithfully). It is common, when addressing a letter to a person by name, for the final situation, as it is called, to be ‘Yours sincerely,’ If the first word in the final sentence of a letter you write ends with ‘ing’ you must include the words ‘I am,’ before the final salutation:-
Wrong: Looking forward to hearing from you
Right: Looking forward to hearing from you,
Or: I look forward to hearing from you.
The foregoing may seem a relatively minor point, but if a number of equally good applications are received, a manager or another may look for just such points to reduce the number of interviews – particularly for secretarial or clerical posts, for which good grammar is an essential.
6. Although Swan has written his signature, he has also written his name clearly. This is vital. If the reader if the letter cannot read your signature and so learn your name, he can hardly call you for an interview!
7. Had Swan learnt about the vacancy from a friend or relative, his first paragraph might have read:-
I have learnt from Mr. Donald de Silva, who is employed in your department, that you are looking for a trainee accounts clerk/book-keeper, and I should like to be considered for the post.
I am 17 years old, …………………, etc.
Advertisement Vouchers/Box Numbers
Most newspapers offer a service to advertisers who do not wish to disclose their names and addresses. Instead, those wishing to respond to an advertisement are invited to write to a Voucher or a Box Number at the newspaper. For instance, the advertisement shown above might have ended:-
Apply in own handwriting, giving details of age, education, etc. to
Voucher No. X/426, The Standard
In such cases, letters and the envelopes in which they will be sent, should be addressed to:
Voucher No. X/426,
Followed by the address of the newspaper, which will be printed somewhere in it. The letter itself should start ‘Dear Sir or Madam’,.