Reference Letter Template for Employment

This reference letter template shows the format of a typical reference letter. A reference letter should provide information on who you are, your connection with the person you are recommending, why they are qualified and the specific skills they have. In addition, contact information for follow-up should be provided. The following reference letter format is appropriate for an employment reference, as well as a reference for graduate school.

Use this reference letter template as a guide for writing your own reference letters (review samples), making sure all relevant information is included.

Reference Letter Template

If you are writing a personal letter of reference, include a salutation (Dear Dr.Smith, Dear Mr. Jones, etc.). If you are writing a general letter, say "To Whom it May Concern" or simply don't include a salutation.

Paragraph 1
The first paragraph of the reference letter template explains your connection to the person you are recommending, including how you know them, and why you are qualified to write a reference letter to recommend employment or graduate school.

Paragraph 2
The second paragraph of the reference letter template contains specific information on the person you are writing about, including why they are qualified, what they can contribute, and why you are providing a reference letter. If necessary, use more than one paragraph to provide details.

Paragraph 3
When writing a specific letter referring a candidate for a particular job opening, the reference letter template will include information on how the person's skills match the position they are applying for. Ask for a copy of the job posting and a copy of the person's resume so you can target your reference letter accordingly.

This section of the reference letter template contains a brief summary of why are you are recommending the person. State that you "highly recommend" the person or you "recommend without reservation" or something similar.

The concluding paragraph of the reference letter template contains an offer to provide more information. Include a phone number within the paragraph,include the phone number and email address in the return address section of your letter, or in your signature.


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