Your ideal job with the perfect organization may not be advertised online – but this does not mean you cannot apply or demonstrate your interest in potential opportunities that may fit your skill set, educational background, and experience. That is where a letter of interest or prospecting letter comes in.
Also known as a letter of inquiry, a letter of interest is not a response to a specific job posting. Hence, it is not necessarily an application. Instead, it is a demonstration of your respect for the company and your belief that you have the know-how required to serve such organization well.
While sending a letter of interest to indicate interest in a job opening that may not even exist may seem illogical or even counterintuitive, this communication process can give you an edge. For one, you would not be competing against anyone for consideration. Additionally, writing a letter of inquiry shows you have interest and initiative – the two top qualities that best employers watch out for. It is also a demonstration of your ability to leverage personal branding and market yourself.
So, how exactly do you get the attention of your prospective employer? How do you write a perfect letter of interest?
Do your research about the company? What are her goals and values? This will help you tailor your letter to address the specific business they do – and any potential needs you think they may have. Although you may send multiple letters to different companies, your letter should not sound generic. During your research, you'll want to find the contact of a specific person rather than sending your letter to a general email. This way, it is more likely that your letter gets to your prospective employer. Taking out time to research and personalize your letter may impress your potential employer and boost your chances for a role in the company.
Remember that your letter of interest is a business letter – so you must treat it like one. Use the format of a standard business letter while writing the letter. However, the note should be brief, yet powerful. First, explain the purpose of the message and what you admire about the company. Next, it would be ideal to describe your qualifications – including qualities that make you stand out in your niche. Ensure you include your resume, emphasizing the high points of your accomplishments. Be professional.
Suggest the Action You Would Like the Company to Take
Writing a persuasive letter without suggesting the next step will hardly mean much. However, it would be wise to be smart about how you go about this. While a job interview is the obvious next step, jumping right into such request may turn your employer off since you are not sure if there is an available position that fits your experience. Instead, you may ask for an opportunity to discuss your definite ideas over the phone or come over to the company for an informational interview.
Avoid making use of filler words and phrases. Let your writing be lean and clean – and use a few powerful words to give your letter the pop it deserves.