How to Email an Employer About a Job


Pretend you're writing a formal business letter on paper. Transfer that formality to your email for a prospective employer. As a job candidate, an employer will judge you based in part on every point of contact, from emails to interviews. Your goal in writing an email is to present yourself as a professional. To that end, show the employer that you are respectful of his time by keeping the email brief and concise.

Select the “Reply” button if you are replying to an employer's email, rather than starting a new message. Write your email above the prospective employer's previous email. This helps remind the employer of who you are and what the communication is about.

Keep the same subject line if you are replying to a previous email. Otherwise, write a very simple, clear title on the subject line. For example, if you are replying to a job ad you found, write “Assistant Manager Position.”

Write a formal greeting. If you are initiating contact with a prospective employer, be as formal as possible. Write “Dear Ms. Polanski” instead of “Hey, Josephine.” On the other hand, if you're replying to an email, take your cue from the employer's greeting. If he wrote “Hello Susan” in his previous email, you may write “Hello Constantine.”

Write “Dear Sir or Madam” if you're initiating contact, but can't find a specific name linked to the email account. Another tactic is to address your email to the department or to a person's title. For example, write “Dear Hiring Manager at Novins Electronics” or “Dear Human Resources at Novins Electronics.”

Get right to the point in the body of your email. Use short, precise sentences. Explain why you are emailing if you're initiating contact. For example, write “I am writing in response to the ad posted on (job website) for the (job position).” Provide a little information about your qualifications. If you're responding to a previous email from an employer, provide any other information that she requested.

Follow all of the prospective employer's instructions. If you're initiating contact, reread the job ad to ensure you've followed all the instructions. If the employer requested a resume, attach the document and write “Please see my attached resume.” Sometimes, an employer may request a resume in the body of the email.

Close your email with a few brief words. Write something like “Thank you for taking the time to consider me for the position. I look forward to hearing from you.”

Read the entire email before you send it. Check for misspellings and grammar errors. Look for any phrases or words that may have a double meaning or that might convey a negative tone.

Write a signature block. Write “Sincerely, (your full name)” followed by your address and phone number. You may also include your job title.

Tips & Warnings

  • Use an appropriate, formal email alias. If your email account is something like “,” create another email account for your job hunt. Use your name as your email alias. For example, use “” Never write in all capital letters, in all lower case letters, or use stylized or large fonts.

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