The job market is highly competitive, especially when it comes to higher paying salaries. Companies want to make sure they’re getting the best new employees that they can. Education, experience and training are all good factors, but personality and character - who someone is as a worker - is also incredibly important.
As a job seeker, how do you show that you have the personal traits a major company would find appealing? How do you demonstrate that you have the kind of personality they might be looking for? The answer is deceptively simple: just ask. With a letter of interest.
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A Letter of Interest is a formal request for more information on a company, or a request for a meeting to go over some of the stuff that companies don’t publicly offer to job seekers. It’s a request for more specific information and background details that an average passer-by or job hopeful might not be expected to know. And, it’s a show of your personal investment in their company.
Producing a Letter of Interest of a company shows them that you aren’t someone who is satisfied just filling out a web page form and waiting for a call. It shows that you are someone who is self-motivated enough to reach out, inquisitive enough to learn from them and dedicated to their business before you even join it. These are all great traits to show and provide a clear view of you as a potential employee.
The “job openings” page for any company is only the surface level of what’s going on behind the scenes. There are job openings that go unreported for a long time, usually ones that they intend to fill internally with ease. These are better paying than the entry level jobs, and you won’t know about them without writing a proper letter inquiring as to what your level of experience or education can really add to their company.
Cover Letters offer a very different focus than a Letter of Interest.
Cover Letters are directed at how you plan to fill the role you’re applying for, and nothing else. They offer a quick breakdown of work you’ve had in the past, clarifications to your resume and any other helpful information. Cover Letters coincide with a resume, and a hiring period. They are things asked of you. Check out our How to write a cover letter with no experience article for a better idea
Letters of Interest are sent by you, at no request, to the company whether they are hiring or not because you believe you have skills they need and want more information about them. It further shows your dedication and initiative, that you do not need to be asked to show your interest in their company. It provides a strong starting point when you make the first move in the hiring process. The goal of a Cover Letter is to pair with your Resume, a Letter of Interest is to get you the interview.
[Job title] [Telephone number] [Email address] [Website] [Date]
Dear [Mr./Ms./Mrs.] [Hiring Manager’s Name],
I am writing to express my interest in working for your company. I have been a huge fan of [Name of company] for years. And I have wanted to work with your company ever since I first heard about it at the [name the event the company spoke at]. Your development of [ name product] is impressive, and I believe it would be a privilege to be a part of such a fantastic project. With over three years of experience working in a fast-paced and advanced [specify] team, I believe my comprehensive set of skills may greatly benefit your growing [specify] department.
I am a hard-working, motivated, and deadline-driven professional with excellent [skill 1], [skill 2], and [skill 3] skills. I currently hold a [type of qualification] in [specify] from the [university/college name] and a certificate in [specify]. Over the years, I’ve worked hard to hone my expertise and build my knowledge of the [specify] industry, earning me recognition in [year] when I [add a career achievement].
I would appreciate the opportunity to speak with a member of your team about what I can bring to your organization in the future. I am available to meet at your convenience and can be reached at [Your Email Address] or [Your Phone Number].
Kind regards, [Your name]
Letters of Interest are rarer than standard cover letters and other requested documents, but they’re not so rare that yours will be alone. And because they can be sent in at any time, they need to strike a reasonable amount of interest to get noticed by the hiring team. To do this, you need to write a very personal, detailed letter.
What should shine through the most is your personality in writing it. Be honest, but not casual. Present yourself at your best, but don’t stretch the truth or fake being like someone you’re not. Having honesty shows integrity and a comfort in who you are. It shows confidence, a crucial trait for any high-stake job where you will be trusted to make critical decisions.
When you’re writing the recipient line, find out who will actually be reading your letter and write their name. “To whom it may concern” is not personal enough. You should open your letter with proof that you have researched the company at least enough to know who will be receiving your message first. It’s a good way to subtly grab their attention. Once you do, you dig deeper, and plant a hook.
The Letter of Interest is there to show your interest in the company and get them interested in you. Tell them what you plan on bringing, what your plans are for their business and how you see yourself making improvements. Even if you aren’t being brought on to handle that kind of work, the fact that you’re thinking ahead shows promise.
And remember, you’re not just interested in working. This isn’t a desperation tactic to get hired no matter what. There is something they have which you can’t get anywhere else, and that’s why you’re spending the time to reach out to them and perform this much work. Let them know what that is, what they are undertaking that you know you have to be a part of.
Even though you want to be yourself, you also want to be brief. Leave them wanting to learn more about you, and invite them to set up an interview. A well written, personal, concise and attractive letter of interest doesn’t do its job unless they feel like they need to keep talking to you. It’s not a fan letter or just a letter of your appreciation. It’s a job application in reverse. You’re asking them to bring you in without them asking first.
The best expert on who you are is yourself. But, if you don’t know what a good letter looks like on paper, you may need some help. We have provided an example of how a Letter of Interest should look like, how each paragraph breaks down and how to deliver concise, accurate information that will catch the reader’s attention.
When you sent a Letter of Interest, don’t expect an immediate reply. What you can do to show your interest even further is follow up with a phone call. Mention it in the letter to give them a deadline so you can meet it and prove that you’re serious.
You should know how to write your own letter of intent now that you know how to write one. To get started, feel free to use our examples.
Don’t forget to include your resume with your letter of interest – you can find the ideal match in our portfolio of resume templates. If you’re short on time, our free resume builder will create a resume for you in a couple of minutes and this article will help you in writing a stunning resume