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How to Write a Reference Letter

Reference letter is the formal letter written to provide reference for someone. It may be required for a job application or academic purpose such as university/college admission, or scholarship. There are several samples of such letters for instance, it could be written by a graduate school teacher to his student for his job recommendation or from a former employer to his employee for his new job and so on. It is most likely written for an employee, a friend, acquaintance, co-worker, or someone you know since long time.

A perfectly worded letter covers all the essential information about the person subject to the writing. It provides a brief description of his qualification, skills and personality traits. There are so many templates available on internet on how to write such letter but always draft a customized letter according to the requirement. Here are some best writing tips to make an effective reference letter.

Tips to write a Reference Letter

  • Compose it on your letterhead if you are writing this as an individual and if you are writing this on behalf of your organization, write it on your organization’s letterhead.
  • Write it in the standard format of business letter writing.
  • Enter the current date. Date matters a lot in references as it express that you are aware with the current conditions.
  • Create a crisp subject line to deliver the gist of the letter.
  • Start it with a formal salutation such as “Dear Mr. /Mrs. /Ms.” and if you are not sure about the recipient or you are writing a very general reference letter, write “To Whom It May Concern”.
  • Provide a brief introduction about yourself and the person you are writing about in the opening paragraph. Mention how and how long you are known to the person. Write how you are associated to the person that you are writing about.
  • Show your identification to demonstrate how you are qualified enough to make his reference.
  • Write some lines in sincere tone to express that you are really confident about the person subject to this letter. Write some of his qualifications or the strongest fact to support him.
  • If you are writing this to get someone into college or university, provide information complimenting to his educational qualification and learning ability. On other hand if this is for a job purpose communicates the professional qualification, work experience and other skill sets to satisfy the requirement. You can review the resume of the person for whom you are writing this to get a better idea to match up your writing.
  • Summarize all the important points of the letter in the last paragraph. Write some persuasive lines about the person subject of this letter to ensure the recipient that all your above mentioned facts are best to your knowledge and you really confident.
  • Thank the reader in the end. Express your gratitude to the recipient for his consideration and wrap up your writing.
  • Provide your contact number and ask the recipient to contact you for further discussion. Demonstrate your willingness to provide more details.
  • Close it with a formal valediction such as “Sincerely”, “Faithfully”, “Truly” or something similar to it.
  • Put your signature to make this document authentic.

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