What is an employment reference letter?

Obtaining an employment reference letter can avoid the need for telephone references.

An employment reference letter is a letter written to an individual’s future employer. Most reference letters help confirm the details of an employee’s employment with a company, as well as highlight their positive professional qualities. This type of business letter should be written by a professional acquaintance of a prospective employee.

When a candidate is trying to get a new job, it is generally recommended that they have at least one employment reference letter. This letter must be written as a business letter. The return address and contact information, along with the date, must be printed at the top. If known, the recipient’s address should be typed just below the sender’s address.

One of the purposes of an employment reference letter is to highlight an individual’s skills and strengths.

Unlike a personal letter, an employment reference letter must be written in formal language. Slang and humor expressions, for example, should be avoided. Generally, this type of letter should be written to a specific person at a potential new employer. If the letter writer is unsure of a contact person’s name, he should use a general salutation such as “To Whom It May Concern.”

One of the purposes of an employment reference letter is to confirm that an individual worked for the letter writer’s company. The specific dates the individual worked for the company should be included, along with their title or position. Some employment reference letters may also include salary information.

Another purpose of an employment reference letter is to highlight an individual’s skills and strengths. A letter writer may include information about a candidate’s positive attitude or work ethic. Specific examples of a former employee’s strengths should also be included, if possible. For example, if a former employee helped reduce a company’s costs, this should be explained briefly in an employment reference letter.

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An employment reference letter should not be written by just anyone. While a reference letter written by a boss is impressive, one written by a co-worker or supervisor will also work. It is usually best for an employment reference letter to be written by someone with whom the candidate has worked closely. This type of letter should also be written by someone who has a high opinion of the candidate.

Requesting an employment reference letter is traditionally done through a formal business letter. In this letter, the questioner must make it clear that he respects the opinion of the potential letter writer and why. It can also remind the would-be writer of some of their skills and accomplishments.

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