What Is a Letter of Interest?

A letter of interest is a business letter that is sent to companies that have not posted any job advertisements yet. This is done in order to introduce you as a potential candidate and employee for their company. This will be presented to the HR manager and convey your skills and qualifications. This is also referred to as a letter of inquiry or a prospecting letter.

A letter of inquiry must not be in any way confused with a cover letter. While this is sent in an unsolicited manner and not created for a specific job post, a cover letter on the other hand is sent as a response to job advertisements or job posts. A cover letter is also sent along with a curriculum vitae or a resume.

Key Elements Included in a Letter of Interest

The basic information of the sender: First and foremost, knowing that this is an unsolicited type of letter, it is a must to not be anonymous. It is important to add the name of the sender. It is also a must to include your contact information as well as your address.The date: The date that the letter was sent is also an important factor. Not all letter of inquiry will be received and evaluated the same day that it was sent. This is why it is important to state the date.The basic information of the employer: The next core element to include is the basic information of the employer. It is crucial to include the name of the employer or in most cases, the name of the human resources manager or the recruiter. This will as well include their contact information. It is also important to include the address of the company or in some cases, the specific department to which you are sending the letter.The greeting: This is a show of your politeness and your professionalism. In every letter, it is important to start the body of the letter with a salutation. It is important to have a strong yet polite salutation. It is also important to remember that the greeting should be appropriate for the situation.The introductory paragraph: The first paragraph of the letter will be the introduction about yourself. This will also include an explanation on how you heard about their company. It is also important to state the reason as to why you are sending the letter.The paragraph for your qualifications: The second paragraph will state your qualifications. This is the section where you will state all about the practical skills and theoretical knowledge that you possess. This is also the section where you can state past work experiences you have.The closing paragraph: The closing paragraph: The closing paragraph is where you will state that you are interested in having a face to face interview with the employers. In most cases, this is referred to as the call to action paragraph. This means that you are prompting the employers or human resources managers to connect with you.The signature: At the end of the letter of interest, it is a must that the sender affix their signature. In general, this will state the full name of the sender and a signature on top of the name. This is to show that the letter is formal and legal.

Step by Step Process in Creating a Letter of Interest

Step 1: Choose a Template of Your Liking

The first step is to select a template that will suit your style and taste. However, it is important to take note that a letter of interest is a legal and formal document. It is important to make it as simple as possible. 

This can be considered a professional business letter, this means that you should write it as a professional. Make use of a standard technical letter format. This will show that you are a professional. It is important to make use of a professional tone and words in writing this document.

Step 2: Research the Target Company

It is important that you have a lot of knowledge about the company that you will send the letter to. Do extensive research about their most notable and most recent developments and accomplishments. This will help you build a rapport with the company. Knowing and understanding the recent news about the company will also make the timing of your letter better. This means that you will be able to anticipate what the company is in need of. 

Lastly, it is also important to know and understand the mission statement as well as the vision statement of the company. Once the HR or employer sees that you understand their goals and values, it will be a huge boost for you as a potential candidate in their company.

Step 3: Know Who to Address

It is not enough that you will address the letter to the company. It is better and more formal to know who is the right person to talk to for job hiring. Addressing the letter to the human resources department may also tend to the invalidation of your document. 

This is one of the hardest parts of creating this letter. You have to know the network of the company and find the name of the hiring manager. Once you acquire the resources you need, state the full name of the individual along with his or her basic information. This will include his or her position in the company along with his or her contact information.

Step 4: Construct the Introductory Paragraph

Before going into writing the introductory paragraph, it is important to take note that the HR manager is not expecting to receive a letter from you. That is why it is important to have a strong and solid introductory paragraph. Just like in a persuasive essay, it is important that right from the get go you will be able to hook the target audience. It is important that an introduction will appeal to the target audience. Make use of different persuasive techniques in order for the reader to keep on reading the whole letter.

In this step and in this paragraph, thoroughly explain the purpose of the letter. This should provide details on how you heard about the company and the specific pieces of information you know about their goals and ideals.

Step 5: Outline and Showcase Your Strengths

In your body paragraph, it is a must to outline and showcase your strengths. This is a way to appeal better to the target audience. This is the part where you will state your educational background and any awards you received while you are in school. Most companies will take a look at your transcript of records.

Another important factor to highlight is your past work experience (if you have any). It is a good idea to state all the experiences you have. Focus more on your experiences that are in direct correlation with the type of industry the company belongs to. Thoroughly describe your employment background in this section. With clarity and in a brief manner, state and describe your attendance record as an employee. This will show that you are dedicated to work as well as show that you are hardworking. It is also important to include any recent skills that you have acquired during your downtime. 

This must as well explain why you are a perfect fit for the company. That is why it is important to have a thorough research about your target company. Overall, this section will state and discuss the qualifications you have and indicate why you are a strong candidate for the company. This must clearly convey that you can be a valuable employee for their company.

Step 6: Provide a Closing Paragraph

This is the last paragraph in your letter. It is important that in this paragraph you include a call to action for the employers or hiring managers. This means that you will encourage them to contact you or reply to your email asking for additional information. In this section it is a must to clearly convey that you are interested in being a part of their company.

Lastly, it is essential that you add a thankyou statement in the closing paragraph. It is important that you thank them for the time that they devoted in reading your letter of inquiry.

Step 7: Proofread the Letter

Before sending the letter to the recipient. It is important to go over it once again and check for any kinds of errors. Make sure that the letter is clear and organized. Having any grammatical error and spelling error will be a huge downside to your reputation.

Step 8: Sign the Letter

Last but not the least, it is important to affix your signature in the document. This is a formal business letter, it is a must to construct the letter with formality and professionalism.

Tips in Writing an Effective Letter of Interest

Be concise
Knowing that this letter is under the category of unsolicited letters, it is important to be concise. Human resources managers and hiring managers are not expecting this letter, this means that they do not have a lot of free time to read documents that are long. It is important not to be hung up on stating lengthy explanations about your qualifications.

It is important to be brief on writing the body paragraphs. However, it is crucial to include all the notable details about yourself.

Be personal
Once again, this is a kind of letter that needs to make use of a persuasive essay. It is important to not generalize in creating a letter of inquiry. When the letter seems generic, the tendency is that employers or recruiters will think that you are not serious about wanting to be part of the company. It is important to specify what you know about their company as well as how you heard about their company. This is the reason why researching your target company must be done extensively and exhaustively.

It is also important that you address the letter to a specific individual. Do not address the letter to the whole company or to a specific department. Make use of different networks to identify who is the one responsible for evaluating and hiring potential candidates for the position. By doing this, the said individual will tend to think that you are a professional and that you are really interested in the position as well as the company.

Be formal
This letter is a job prospecting tool. This means that this is the first step for you to get hired in a new company. It is important to be careful with your choice of words. Just like in any legal and formal documents, avoid the use of jargons. It is also important to make sure that the voice and tone of the letter is formal.

Proofreading
A lot of people who send this kind of letter may be in a hurry and forget to proofread it. This is a risky move, as one wrong spelling or grammar may have a big effect on the first impression of the hiring manager towards you. It is important to go over the document at least twice to spot any errors.

Follow up
Again, this letter is unsolicited, they are not expecting to receive this. It is important to follow it up. However, it is also bad to be impatient and keep on messaging them. It is important to understand that hiring managers are also busy.

A letter of interest is an unsolicited kind of letter that is sent to your prospective company. It has similarities with your application letter. The main purpose of this letter is to state your skills and qualifications. This must clearly convey how you can be an important asset for their company. It is important to take note not to be overconfident and keep the  letter accurate and true. Do not exaggerate your strengths. Make use of the templates available above in order to have a guide on creating a letter of interest or letter of inquiry.