A letter of introduction can be a powerful way to network with a potential employer. Or meet a new acquaintance that can help you advance your career. Writing an introduction letter can be a great way to climb the career ladder. The letter is most frequently used to connect with an acquaintance. An acquaintance who is connected with a job opportunity the letter requester would like to pursue.
What is a Letter of Introduction?
A letter of introduction or referral letter is exactly what it sounds. It’s an introduction letter written by another person regarding you, the requester for the introduction. It’s often confused with the following business letters.
Letter of Introduction vs. Cover Letter or Reference Letter
- A cover letter: A cover letter (or application letter) that gets provided in your job application to your prospective employer. And which speaks to the professional qualifications you have as a potential employee.
- A recommendation letter: A recommendation letter get written by a previous employer or supervisor, referring to your abilities as an employee.
- A reference letter: A reference letter gets written by a previous employer, professional reference, or family friend. It speaks to a prospective employer about personal and professional qualities that make you a stand out job applicant.
The letter of introduction is perfect for a professional who is on an active job search. You may have a professional friend connected with the hiring manager who is hiring for an open job opportunity that you’re interested in. You can ask your professional friend to write to you, the job seeker, a letter of introduction. The letter should be to the hiring manager. It’s advised to perform an informational interview to determine if you’re a good fit for the role.
By going this route, you can stand out from the other job applicants. By not just responding to the job advertisement (job ad). But by being referred by a mutual party. This increases your chances of receiving a job interview and a job offer.
Tip: Another option is to look into writing a letter of interest. This is a letter that’s written by a job seeker to a hiring manager. And inquires about future job openings that aren’t publicly listed.
Why Have Another Professional Write a Letter of Introduction?
The letter of introduction is going to have a stronger response rate than a cold email. And while both can be effective. An email recipient who sees a name they’re familiar with is more likely to open the email and investigate the request.
In addition, a letter of introduction can act as a type of recommendation letter. Because it shows the professional who is providing the introduction is willing to “vouch” for the future professional connection.
Building a professional network is one of the best ways to ensure future job opportunities. More than 75% of jobs are filled by networking.
Letter of Introduction Uses
There are a variety of uses for a letter of introduction:
- Having an introduction letter or business introduction letter be written to a potential client or customer for business development purposes.
- Writing a letter to introduce yourself to a potential employer as a candidate for a job opening.
- Having an introduction letter be written to connect you professionally with another professional.
A letter of introduction can be especially powerful when the referring professional has something significant to share. For example, sharing a business opportunity. Or speaking about a future job opportunity.
Think about why the recipient would want the introduction. And what benefit it’s going to provide them.
How to Write a Letter of Introduction
Before writing a formal letter of introduction, determine the use case that you’re writing this letter for. Is it a company introduction letter, professional introduction letter, or letter of introduction to a hiring manager for a position? Depending on the use case, you may want to include relevant pieces of information about the person in question. For example, including relevant information from the job applicant’s resume if you’re writing a letter of introduction for a job opening.
Here are the general guidelines for what should be within your letter:
- Your contact information: Your name, email address, phone number, LinkedIn profile, or other relevant information.
- First paragraph: The reason you’re reaching out to the professional. For example, a professor writing a letter to another professor regarding an open teaching position.
- Second paragraph: The reason why the reader should connect with the person in question. Including relative attributes and impressive qualities that will have a strong first impression on the reader.
- Final paragraph: Be sure to include the contact information of the specific person you’re asking the reader to connect with.
These components of the introduction letter are the same. And whether you’re writing a letter of introduction to a potential customer, prospective client, or writing a self-introduction regarding a job opening. The above format should be followed.
Letter of Introduction Sample
Below is a sample letter of introduction. Use this as an introduction example when writing yours.
Director of Finance
188 Chestnut Blvd.
San Francisco, CA 94112
May 1st, 2020
SVP of HR
1 Infinite Loop.
San Francisco, CA 94112
Dear Mr. Anderson:
I’m writing you this letter to speak with you regarding the open position of Product Designer at Apple. I want to introduce you to Beth Smith, a colleague who was able to do tremendous work in our past workplace. Together, we worked at Adobe, where we could release roughly 12 versions of the Photoshop package with updated UI designs.
Beth is interested in speaking with you regarding this position. And learning more about the role’s qualifications. And trying to determine if there are a mutual interest and benefit in interviewing for the position. Her contact information is [email protected], and her phone number is (555) 755-8575.
Thank you so much,
Letter of Introduction Introducing Yourself
Below is a sample letter of introduction introducing yourself.
I’m writing you this letter to introduce myself and speak with you regarding the open Product Design position at Apple. I noticed that you were seeking someone with experience in native software development. And I have at least 5 years of previous experience at Adobe. We released more than 12 versions of Photoshop under the Creative Suite. And I would love to show you my work and see if there is mutual benefit in interviewing for the open position.
Thank you so much,
Letter of Introduction Template Download
Download this introductory template to use for your letter of introduction needs. Can be imported as a Google Doc. Instant download. No email required.
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About the author
Patrick Algrim is a Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW), NCDA Certified Career Counselor (CCC), and general career expert. Patrick has completed the NACE Coaching Certification Program (CCP). And has been published as a career expert on Forbes, Glassdoor, American Express, Reader’s Digest, LiveCareer, Zety, Yahoo, Recruiter.com, SparkHire, SHRM.org, Process.st, FairyGodBoss, HRCI.org, St. Edwards University, NC State University, IBTimes.com, Thrive Global, TMCnet.com, Work It Daily, Workology, Career Guide, MyPerfectResume, College Career Life, The HR Digest, WorkWise, Career Cast, Elite Staffing, Women in HR, All About Careers, Upstart HR, The Street, Monster, The Ladders, Introvert Whisperer, and many more. Find him on LinkedIn.