Do you know how to compose the proper and correct reference letter format? If you don’t, no need to worry or be ashamed. Not everyone has the skill to compose such a letter because of various reasons. First of all, not everyone has ever been asked to write a reference letter. Second, not everyone is WILLING to write such a letter, considering the heavy social burden and mental responsibility it bears. But it doesn’t hurt to learn about the letter and the right structure. Who knows? Maybe you will have to write this kind of letter one day.
Reference Letter Functionality
If you want to think of it, a reference letter is basically used to vouch for someone – for some people, it is considered to endorse someone regarding their character, knowledge, ability, skills, and experience. It is common for the admission manager or committee to ask the reference letter when you apply for a further academic grade or when you apply for a job. Since the hiring manager or admission committee isn’t familiar with your ability, they need the extra information to help make crucial decision. So you shouldn’t be too surprised when you are asked to include the letter along your resume.
Compose the Reference Letter
Here are some facts about the reference letter that you should know:
- The structure of the letter is similar to other letters
- You need to provide the information about the nature of your relationship with the person being recommended – aside from the information you provide about his/her skills, ability, and qualification.
- The construction for reference letter for either employment or education is just the same although the contents should be different.
- It would be a great idea to see (and then review) the examples so you know how to properly construct, manage, and compose the letter
- Don’t be too rigid when constructing the letter. Be ready to be flexible and make changes, especially if you want to make sure that the letter will fit the required contents.
How to compose the reference letter format correctly? If you want to compose the letter properly and correctly, there are some elements that you should include:
- Contact information. You need to write the recipient’s contact info as well as yours. The recipients and your contact info should be written on the top part of the letter. But if you send the letter by email, your contact info should be included in your signature.
- The way of writing the subject should be ‘Reference for [first name] [last name]’. For instance, Subject: Reference for John Watkins
- If you know the name of the recipient, include ‘Dear [name]’ but if you don’t, no need to write salutation at all.
- Paragraph 1 containing your explanation to the person being recommended, such as how long you have known them, how you know them, and why you are considered qualified for the letter
- Paragraph 2 containing specific info of the person being recommended, including their qualifications, their contribution, and why you are writing the letter.
- This is the part where you can offer more info when needed.
As you can see from the reference letter format, you won’t have to deal with difficulty if you now the right format.