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    How to Write an Application Letter—Examples & Guide

    Embarking on the job-hunting journey? A great letter of application can be your golden ticket to stand out in the competitive job market. Learn how to write one with our guide.

    Mariusz Wawrzyniak
    Mariusz Wawrzyniak
    Career Expert
    How to Write an Application Letter—Examples & Guide

    Here we go again… Another job posting, another letter. This time it’s a letter of application.

    But don’t worry. You’ve probably written dozens of application letter already, you just don’t know it yet. After you read this article, you’ll never sigh at the sight of another letter of application.

    This guide will show you:

    • An application letter sample for any position that’s better than most others out there.
    • Step-by-step guide on how to write an application letter for a job.
    • Tips on setting the proper letter of application format.

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    Want to learn more about job application documents? Read our other cover letter guides:

    What Is a Letter of Application?

    A letter of application is intended to introduce yourself and explain why you're interested in the position. Also known as a cover letter, it is sent with your resume when applying for a job. An application letter allows you to showcase your qualifications and skills alongside your enthusiasm.

    Now let’s look at what a professional letter of application looks like:

    Letter of Application Example

    Vinícius Cunha Pinto

    UX Researcher

    2496 Bassell Avenue

    Little Rock, AR 72201

    501-626-5744

    vinícius.pinto@gmail.com

    linkedin.com/in/viní-cunha-pinto

    Sherwood, 1/10/2021

    Mr. Antonio Strife

    Head of HR

    Hewlett-Packard Company

    232 Pumice Dr

    Sherwood, AR 72120

    Dear Mr. Strife

    I am excited to apply for the UX researcher position at Hewlett-Packard. As a UX researcher with over six years of experience in the field, I am confident that my expertise and passion for user-centered design make me an excellent candidate for this role. In my previous position at AG Group, I increased user engagement with our app by 45%.

    Another one of my biggest accomplishments was leading a research project identifying several usability issues in our company's mobile app. I worked with the design team to create solutions to these issues, resulting in a 30% increase in user satisfaction. I was also responsible for conceptualizing, designing, and developing marketing pages for our company’s website and directly contributed to over 60% increase in revenue. Furthermore, I am skilled in conducting user interviews, usability tests, surveys, and data analysis and proficient in various research tools, such as Optimal Workshop, UserTesting.com, and Qualtrics.

    I am particularly drawn to Hewlett-Packard because of its reputation for innovation and commitment to pushing the boundaries of technology. Your company's dedication to delivering cutting-edge solutions aligns perfectly with my passion for staying at the forefront of UX research and design. I am eager to bring my skills and insights to a dynamic organization like Hewlett-Packard, where I can contribute to pioneering advancements in user experiences. The collaborative and forward-thinking culture at Hewlett-Packard resonates with my professional values, and I am enthusiastic about the prospect of contributing to your team's success.

    Working for Hewlett-Packard would be a wonderful opportunity for me. I would love to join your team and contribute to creating exceptional user experiences for your customers. Can we schedule a meeting, so I can tell you more about the UX solutions I can bring to your company?

    Sincerely,

    Vinícius Cunha Pinto

    P.S.— I’d also love to tell you about how I worked with the development team to implement design changes that reduced user errors by 75%.

    Using this example, let’s now go through the entire process of writing a letter of application.

    How to Write a Letter of Application

    Follow the instructions below to create a professional yet simple job application letter:

    1. Use the Right Format of an Application Letter for a Job

    Before your job application reaches the recruiter, it’ll most likely need to go through an automated ATS scan. And to ensure everything is read correctly, your application letter requires clear and clean formatting.

    To format your letter of application correctly, follow these guidelines:

    Also, save your letter of application for a job in a PDF format unless instructed otherwise. This will keep your formatting and the general layout of the document intact.

    Expert Hint: You may think that sending just your resume is enough. But in truth, that’s a very wrong way to think. Letters of application are essential in the job market, so don’t risk losing to other candidates just because you didn’t write one.

    2. Address Your Letter of Application Properly

    Addressing an application letter is simple. Firstly, include your contact information in the header of the application letter

    • Full name
    • Job title
    • Full address
    • Telephone number
    • Email
    • LinkedIn profile (optional)
    • Current date

    Then, put your hiring manager’s and their company’s info underneath it. Use:

    • Recruiter’s full name
    • Recruiter’s job title
    • Company’s name
    • Company’s address

    And lastly, greet your hiring manager by using an honorific (Mr. Ms.) and their full name. Take a look at the example below to visualize:

    Letter of Application Example—Address

    Good example

    Vinícius Cunha Pinto

    UX Researcher

    2496 Bassell Avenue

    Little Rock, AR 72201

    501-626-5744

    vinícius.pinto@gmail.com

    linkedin.com/in/viní-cunha-pinto

    Sherwood, 1/10/2021

    Mr. James Stipe

    Head of HR

    Hewlett-Packard Company

    232 Pumice Dr

    Sherwood, AR 72120

    Dear Mr. Strife

    There is one challenge waiting for you in this first part. Finding out the name of your recruiter. If the company put it out in the job ad, you’re golden. If it didn’t, there are a couple of ways to try and discover it on your own. You can check the company’s website or LinkedIn profile for starters. If you still drew a blank, reach out to an employee of the company and ask them. LinkedIn makes it super easy.

    If everything fails, you’ll have to resort to a generalized salutation. “Dear Hiring Manager” is a great solution.

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    3. Open Up With an Enticing First Paragraph

    Next up, you need to capture the recruiter’s attention. So put your best foot forward in the first paragraph.

    This is how the letter of application should start:

    • Show you’re enthusiastic about applying for the position.
    • Present your most impressive professional work achievement.
    • Identify the company and the position you’re applying for by name.

    Here’s what it looks like:

    Sample Application Letter for a Job—First Paragraph

    Good Example

    I am excited to apply for the UX researcher position at Hewlett-Packard. As a UX researcher with over six years of experience in the field, I am confident that my expertise and passion for user-centered design make me an excellent candidate for this role. In my previous position at AG Group, I increased user engagement with our app by 45%.

    Bad Example

    I am writing to apply for the UX Researcher/Developer position advertised on your website. I have over 6 years of experience and am skilled in various UX research methods. Furthermore, I have a proven track of increasing user engagement.

    In theory, both of these examples present the same candidate. But the difference in said presentation makes the second sample bite the dust.

    Candidate #2 doesn’t check any of the aforementioned boxes, and it shows. He has no enthusiasm, no measurable achievement to catch the eye, and he doesn’t even mention the company by name, meaning he probably sent the same letter of application to hundreds of other jobs.

    But not everyone can show a work achievement straight away. If you’re applying for your first job, focus on the two other aspects of your application letter’s first paragraph. Like so:

    Example of an Application Letter with No Experience—First Paragraph

    Good Example

    As a recent graduate in Human-Computer Interaction, I am excited to apply for the Junior UX Researcher position at Hewlett-Packard. I have been following your company's work for some time now, and I am impressed with your commitment to improving the user experience through extensive research and testing. As a passionate and detail-oriented researcher, I am confident that my skills and knowledge will make me an excellent fit for your team.

    And that’s a great way to introduce yourself when writing a letter of application with no experience.

    Expert Hint: Job application letters build a connection with the employer by introducing yourself in a good light. One very effective tactic is to research the company’s mission and values and refer to them in your letter of application.

    4. Prove Your Expertise in the Main Body

    Now that you’ve hooked the recruiter, it’s time to reel them in. Metaphorically, of course.

    There are a lot of different things you can include in a letter of application. But all of them must share a certain similarity. They have to be relevant to the position you’re applying for. And that’s especially true in the main body section of the job application letter. Why? Because here, you’ll list some enticing work achievements and work skills you possess.

    You can see this in the following example:

    How to Write an Application Letter—Main Body Section Example

    Good Example

    Another one of my biggest accomplishments was leading a research project identifying several usability issues in our company's mobile app. I worked with the design team to create solutions to these issues, resulting in a 30% increase in user satisfaction. I was also responsible for conceptualizing, designing, and developing marketing pages for our company’s website and directly contributed to over 60% increase in revenue. Furthermore, I am skilled in conducting user interviews, usability tests, surveys, and data analysis and proficient in various research tools, such as Optimal Workshop, UserTesting.com, and Qualtrics.

    I am particularly drawn to Hewlett-Packard because of its reputation for innovation and commitment to pushing the boundaries of technology. Your company's dedication to delivering cutting-edge solutions aligns perfectly with my passion for staying at the forefront of UX research and design. I am eager to bring my skills and insights to a dynamic organization like Hewlett-Packard, where I can contribute to pioneering advancements in user experiences. The collaborative and forward-thinking culture at Hewlett-Packard resonates with my professional values, and I am enthusiastic about the prospect of contributing to your team's success.

    Bad Example

    I have experience working in UX research and am confident in learning and adapting quickly to new technologies and methodologies. I can use many tools, including MS Excel. Outside my many UX accomplishments, I have also worked as a sales representative, furthering my vast skills portfolio.

    See what lack of relevance and quantified achievements do to a letter of application? The second candidate could best fit the position, but he will not get picked with that paragraph.

    On the other hand, in the first example, relevance guides our candidate. He doesn’t bother talking about their previous job in a different field. Instead, he presents UX skills and accomplishment statements and, most of all, quantifies them for maximum impact.

    Also, it’s a letter of application. So tell the recruiter why you want to apply to this specific company. Show a cultural fit, mention your values, and talk about what you can bring to the company.

    But then again… How does someone without experience tackle the second paragraph of a job application letter? They should show their drive towards the specific position and the steps they have already undertaken towards their goal. Just like that:

    Sample Letter of Application for a Job With No Experience—Main Body

    Good Example

    During my studies, I worked on several UX research projects, including conducting usability testing, creating personas, and analyzing user feedback. In addition, I have completed a certification in UX Research and Design, where I learned how to conduct user interviews, design research studies, and analyze data. I am proficient in various research methodologies and tools such as surveys, A/B testing, heat maps, and user flow analysis.

    And despite the lack of measured achievements, this candidate is dedicated to becoming a UX specialist. No employer is going to have any doubts about whether he will be a driven employee at their company.

    Expert Hint: As tempting as it may be, never copy your resume into the letter of application. Of course, you can show one or two of the same things but focus more on presenting other achievements and skills.

    5. Finish Your Application Letter With a Clear CTA

    Do you know the saying, “It’s not important how you start, it’s important how you finish?” Well, in letters of application, that’s not really a good saying, as you do need a strong start, but a strong finish is just as crucial.

    So don’t screw up by including a non-ending “looking forward to hearing from you” or “thank you for considering my application.” Way too many candidates finish their letters of job application this way, and it just doesn’t work.

    It’s uninspiring and boring.

    Instead, do it like this: 

    Ending a Job Application Letter—Sample

    Good Example

    Working for Hewlett-Packard would be a wonderful opportunity for me. I would love to join your team and contribute to creating exceptional user experiences for your customers. Can we schedule a meeting, so I can tell you more about the UX solutions I can bring to your company?

    Sincerely,

    Vinícius Cunha Pinto

    P.S.— I’d also love to tell you about how I worked with the development team to implement design changes that reduced user errors by 75%.

    Bad Example

    If you have time, we could maybe schedule a meeting or something? I want to know more about the benefits your company offers

    Vinícius Cunha Pinto

    See? The first one sounds way better than one of those overused cliché lines. At the same time, example number 2 makes the candidate look like an entitled worker with no drive.

    Pay special attention to the call to action. You should always nudge the recruiter into scheduling an interview with you. It may sound silly, but it’s an effective tactic. Additionally, when signing off, write “Sincerely” before your name. It’s the best way to close off a letter of application formally.

    And as you’ve probably noticed, the candidate added a postscript. What’s the deal with that? It’s a completely optional thing, so don’t stress over it. If you want to add a P.S., remember to do so with a completely unique achievement you have not presented in your resume or application letter. If you don’t have anything jaw-dropping, you’re better off not adding a postscript to the end of your letter of job application.

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    Key Points

    Here’s a summary of what’s important when writing a letter of application for a job:

    • Format your application letter correctly to make it easily readable.
    • Refer to the hiring manager and the company by name. Personalization earns you a lot of points in the recruiting process.
    • Put information relevant to the position throughout all sections of the application letter.
    • Always refer to the keywords found in the job ad and the company’s values.
    • Finish off with a call to action, and add a postscript if you have more to show.

    Did you enjoy reading about how to write a letter of application? Do you have any questions about job application letters? Or maybe additional tips to make one stand out even more? Leave a comment. We’ll be happy to engage in a conversation!

    Mariusz Wawrzyniak
    Written byMariusz Wawrzyniak
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    Mariusz is a career expert with a background in quality control & economics. With work experience in FinTech and a passion for self-development, Mariusz brings a unique perspective to his role. He’s dedicated to providing the most effective advice on resume and cover letter writing techniques to help his readers secure the jobs of their dreams.

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