Writing a Letter of Recommendation for Employment: A Step-by-Step Guide with Templates

As an employer or supervisor, you may be asked to write a letter of recommendation for a current or former employee who is applying for a new job. A well-written letter of recommendation can make a significant impact on a candidate’s chances of getting hired, so it’s important to take the time to write a thoughtful and persuasive letter.

In this article, we’ll provide you with a step-by-step guide to writing an effective letter of recommendation for employment, along with some helpful templates to get you started.

Step 1: Understand the Purpose of the Letter

Before you begin writing your letter of recommendation, it’s important to understand the purpose of the letter. The goal of the letter is to provide an objective evaluation of the candidate’s skills, qualifications, and experience to support their job application. Your letter should highlight the candidate’s strengths and achievements, and provide specific examples that demonstrate their value as an employee.

Step 2: Gather Information About the Candidate

To write an effective letter of recommendation, you need to have a good understanding of the candidate’s work history, accomplishments, and qualifications. Ask the candidate to provide you with a copy of their resume, a job description for the position they are applying for, and any other relevant information that will help you write a strong letter.

You can also ask the candidate to provide you with specific examples of their work, such as projects they have completed or awards they have received. This information will help you write a more detailed and persuasive letter.

Step 3: Choose the Right Format

When it comes to formatting your letter of recommendation, there are a few different options to choose from. The most common format is a business letter format, which includes the recipient’s contact information, a greeting, the body of the letter, and a closing.

Another option is to use a recommendation letter template, which can help guide you through the process of writing your letter. Here’s an example of a template you can use:

[Your Name] [Your Company Name] [Your Address] [City, State ZIP Code] [Your Email Address] [Today’s Date] [Recipient’s Name] [Recipient’s Company Name] [Recipient’s Address] [City, State ZIP Code]

Dear [Recipient’s Name],

I am writing to recommend [Candidate’s Name] for the position of [Job Title]. I have had the pleasure of working with [Candidate’s Name] for [Number of Years] years, and I can say without hesitation that [he/she] is one of the most talented and dedicated employees I have ever had the pleasure of working with.

[Provide specific examples of the candidate’s skills and achievements, highlighting their value as an employee.]

I highly recommend [Candidate’s Name] for the position of [Job Title]. [He/She] would be an asset to any organization, and I am confident that [he/she] would excel in this role.

Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any further questions.


[Your Name]

Step 4: Write the Letter

Once you have gathered all of the necessary information and chosen the right format, it’s time to start writing your letter. Begin by introducing yourself and explaining your relationship to the candidate. Then, provide specific examples of the candidate’s skills, qualifications, and achievements that demonstrate their value as an employee.

Make sure to use strong, persuasive language and provide concrete examples to support your claims. Avoid vague or generic statements, and instead focus on specific achievements and accomplishments.

Step 5: Proofread and Edit

Once you have written your letter, it’s important to proofread and edit it carefully. Check for spelling and grammar errors, and make sure that your letter is clear, concise, and well-organized. You want to make sure that your letter is easy to read and that your points are clear and persuasive.

It’s also a good idea to have someone else read over your letter before you send it. A second pair of eyes can help you catch any errors or typos that you might have missed.

Step 6: Finalize and Send

Once you are satisfied with your letter, it’s time to finalize it and send it to the recipient. Make sure to include your contact information in case the recipient has any questions or needs further information.

It’s also important to be timely in your response. The candidate is likely counting on your recommendation to help them secure the job, so make sure to send your letter as soon as possible.


Writing a letter of recommendation for employment can be a daunting task, but it’s also an opportunity to help talented and deserving employees take the next step in their careers. By following these steps and using our templates as a guide, you can write a persuasive and effective letter of recommendation that will help your candidate stand out from the competition.

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