How to Write the Perfect Job Application Email

Posted on February 14, 2020 by in Business | 4 comments

How to Write the Perfect Job Application Email

It used to be that all you needed to do to land a job was to walk into an office, deliver a copy of your resume, and give the boss a firm handshake. These days, most companies won’t even let you past the front desk to deliver a physical document. However, hiring managers may pay attention if you submit a job application email that stands out.

There are several types of job application emails you may need to write depending on your situation. For this article, we’ll discuss when it makes sense to send each of them and share some templates you can use.

Let’s get to work!

When to Send a Job Application Email

There are several types of job application emails, including cover letters, cold pitches, interview follow-ups, and more. Each has its own set of rules. However, they all share one common goal, which is to help you get the job you want.

However, if you want to maximize your chances of success, there’s some professional email etiquette you need to be aware of. Essentially, you can boil the golden rule of job hunting down to this: follow the established application protocols.

Let’s say your dream position is opening up at a company you’ve admired for a while. The job listing states that applicants should fill out an online interest form and attach their resumes – pretty straightforward stuff.

The smart approach, in this case, would be to include a cover letter alongside your resume or in the relevant field in the online form. If you reach out to the company via email instead of following the instructions in the listing, you might end up hurting your chances rather than helping them.

Hiring is already a complex process. Don’t expect anyone to make an extra effort to organize your application when you’ve disregarded the clearly stated guidelines. This extends to refraining from sending a follow-up email if the listing asks applicants not to contact the company directly.

Most of the time, however, you’ll find an opening to send a job application email than can highlight your hirable qualities. In fact, for some positions, this is the established protocol.

3 Types of Job Application Emails and How to Master Them

Emails can factor into the job application process in a number of different ways. Below, we’ve explored three of the most common and shared tips for tackling them.

1. Cover Letter Emails

Cover letters are a standard feature in many job application processes, which makes sense. A resume provides a quick glimpse of a person’s experience and skills. However, it doesn’t share enough information to indicate if a prospective employee will be a good fit for the team.

As an applicant, a cover letter provides you the perfect opportunity to show why you’re the ideal pick for the job. It will seldom hurt your chances of landing a position to send one alongside your resume.

In the past, we’ve talked about the key elements you should include in your cover letter, which are:

  1. Your contact information
  2. A personalized greeting
  3. Why you’re uniquely qualified for the position
  4. Why you’re interested in this particular job
  5. An appropriate closing

When you lay out all the elements this way, it’s almost like a cheat sheet for crafting the perfect cover letter. You’ll likely need to write one even if you’re not sending it as part of a job application email, so this is an important skill to master.

Cover Letter Template

With that in mind, here’s a quick template you can use next time you submit a resume:

John Doe | Sometown, TX 11111 | (222) 222-2222 | [email protected] | www.example.com

Dear Ms. Goodall,

I found out about this opening via your recent job listing, and I wanted to reach out and apply immediately. I’ve been working as a web developer for over ten years now and have made key contributions to projects such as X and Y.

Although I like to think of myself as a full-stack developer, my area of expertise lies in front end projects. I’ve been following your company’s work for a while now and I’m a big fan of A and B products/services.

I believe my skillset makes me a perfect fit for your team. I’m excited about the idea of coming to work for your company, as I’m convinced I have a lot to contribute and that I can grow my own skills there as well.

I look forward to discussing the prospect of joining your team. Thank you for your time, and feel free to contact me via email at [email protected]

Sincerely,

John Doe

As with any template, it’s vital to make it your own. Mainly, you want to pay close attention to your experience, the projects you mention by name, and some of your most outstanding work. Your goal with any cover letter is to hit all the elements listed above in a concise fashion.

2. Cold Pitch Emails

The art of the cold pitch is challenging to master. However, it’s a fairly standard type of job application email, especially if you’re a freelancer or in a creative industry.

When it comes to cold pitches, email is an ideal medium. Phone calls are sometimes perceived as too aggressive, and approaching someone in person only works depending on the setting (think networking events, for example).

With a cold pitch email, you can lay out your points in a non-invasive way and the person on the other end is free to choose whether to read it or not. You can reach out to ask if there are open positions at a company, or even to propose a specific project.

With that in mind, here are a few elements you’ll want to include:

  1. Your contact information
  2. A personalized greeting
  3. An inquiry about potential job openings or other opportunities
  4. Your relevant experience and unique skills
  5. Reasons for your interest in working with this company specifically
  6. An appropriate send-off

The key to a cold pitch email is to make sure you state your goal right away. Everyone’s inbox is full these days, and if your recipient thinks they’re getting a spam message, they’re going to delete it immediately.

Cold Pitch Template

Let’s take the elements above and use them to build a simple template:

John Doe | Sometown, TX 11111 | (222) 222-2222 | [email protected] | www.example.com

Dear Ms. Goodall,

My name is John Doe and I’m reaching out because I know you’re in charge of hiring for Cool Corp. I’m a big fan of your business and I wanted to ask about any available or upcoming job openings.

I’ve been working as a web developer for over X years at several agencies, such as Y and Z. I’m currently looking for an opportunity where I can focus on improving my front end development skills, which I know to be a specialty of your business.

I believe my experience working with A and B technologies can be valuable to your team, and I’d love to further discuss any job opportunities if they’re available.

I’ve attached my resume to this email so you can take a closer look at my qualifications. Please feel free to reply at your convenience.

Sincerely,

John Doe

Once you get the person on the other side past the first few lines, it all comes down to whether there are any available positions or not, and if they consider you a strong candidate. A lot of times, you’ll get a canned response back. In other situations, it’s going to be radio silence, and that’s okay.

When you send a cold pitch, you’re shooting for an opportunity that might not even exist. It’s only logical the rate of rejection is higher than when a company is actively hiring, so don’t take it personally. If you don’t receive a response, it’s not appropriate to send a follow-up email in this scenario.

3. Follow-Up Emails

There’s perhaps no better time for a follow-up email than after a successful job interview. The idea behind this practice is to avoid becoming just another face in a sea of applicants.

Even if your interview was flawless, chances are the people in charge of hiring dealt with dozens of others alongside you. That’s why many consider a follow-up email a standard part of the job application process.

It’s easy for even ideal candidates to be overlooked if there’s a lot of interest in a role. Sending a follow-up email can encourage recruiters to take a second look at you. The worst-case scenario is that they ignore your message, which doesn’t alter your pre-existing chances.

With that in mind, let’s talk about what elements your follow-up email should include:

  1. Your contact information
  2. A simple subject line
  3. A ‘thank-you’ to the interviewer for their time
  4. A standout element you discussed during the interview
  5. Your level of interest in the position
  6. A quick send-off

When it comes to follow-up emails, concision is the name of the game. You don’t want to come across as desperate, so keep your message short and professional.

Follow-Up Email Template

Here’s a quick template based on the guidelines above:

Hello Ms. Goodall,

You may recall that I interviewed for the position of COO last week. We had a great chat about the company and its prospects for the next few years. I was particularly interested in your mention of automating processes to increase productivity. This is a subject I’m passionate about, and I’d love to work with a business that shares that value.

I wanted to take a minute to thank you again for your time and to reiterate my interest in the position.

All the best,

John Doe

This follow-up email tells the interviewer you have a special interest in the position and that you paid attention to what they said during your meeting. If you play your cards right, that’ll be enough to put you back in the running or place you ahead of the rest of the applicants – all in a single email’s work.

Conclusion

Email is the backbone of most modern businesses. Everything from internal communications to job applications pass through this platform. If you send the right message to the necessary person at the ideal time, your chances of landing your dream role increase exponentially.

In this post, we looked at three types of job application emails you might need to send, each with their own set of rules:

  1. Cover letters: If you’re sending a resume, always attach a cover letter unless someone tells you not to.
  2. Cold pitches: You can send cold pitches if you can’t find any information about job openings and you’re interested in working with that particular company.
  3. Follow-up emails: Reminding interviewers of your qualifications can be the cherry on top of a stellar job application.

Do you have any questions about job application emails? Let’s go over them in the comments section below!

Article thumbnail image by Igogosha / shutterstock.com

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4 Comments

  1. Such a nice and thorough post for a job application. I wanted it today 🙂 And reading this article helped.
    Thank you!

    • Hi Augustus,

      Very pleased it was helpful to you 🙂

  2. That was helpful article for me. today i am going for my first interview as well as first job, I have read all the key points. Thank you for making this one.

    • Hi Pratik

      So pleased it was useful and good luck with your interview 🙂

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