5+ Best Job Application Email Examples & Writing Strategies for 2020

job application email

Sending a job application email requires choosing the proper strategy to receive a response and achieve the desired outcome (a job interview that leads to a job offer). A good outcome from sending your email application in is a request to interview either by phone or in-person to discuss the opportunity.

Sending your job application by email is the most common method of connecting with your future hiring manager. In a recent study performed by SHRM, 79% of American’s reported that they found their most recent employment online. And 80% of professionals said that they found their most recent employment by connecting with professional contacts and personnel network.

This means the chances of you sending a job application email this year is significant. And it could mean more competition as well.

Before writing your job application email there are two factors you should consider. Whether the email you’re sending is to a person or whether it is to a group email. For example, if the email address is sarah@company.com or if the email is team@company.com

The reason this is important can be gathered before sending the email and what strategy you might be able to take when writing your email in order to receive a response. This type of email correspondence requires strategic thinking and planning in achieve success.

This can be found in the job advertisement or job description posted online regarding the job opening. If you're forwarded to an online application form, you should disregard this guide as the potential employer would prefer you go through a job portal when applying to the job vacancy.

job application email guidelines

Before Sending Your Email

Before sending your email, regardless of the strategy, it is imperative that you spend time getting familiar with the company goals. You should have a firm understanding of what the company is trying to achieve this year, what they are trying to achieve with the role you’re applying for, and any information regarding the work environment or company values that you can find.

The way to find this information is to look through Press Releases, the company about pages, or recent news. Tools like FinViz, if the company is publicly traded, can be beneficial in finding recent news. In addition, simply searching “[Company] News” and replacing [Company] with the company name, then searching Google, can yield results.

Spend time familiarizing yourself with the business objectives as the email strategies listed below will utilize this information to make your emails sound more targeted, intelligent, and customized to the business you’re applying to.

Before Writing, Your Ideal Email Length

Email length is very important. And with each of our strategies that promote a response from the job application recipient, we need to keep length in mind. A recent study by HubSpot mentions that the ideal email length is between 50 and 125 words. Which is quite short. While the longest email, in order to receive higher “conversion rates” (or responses in our case) is about 200 words.

When writing our job application email, 200 words should be considered the absolute longest amount of words we want to use. Why? Because the recipient is going to receive thousands of applications overnight. And we want to make our point clearly, quickly, and with impact. A longer email could risk the hiring manager disregarding the message entirely.

Before Writing, Your Ideal Email Subject Line

Email subject line is equally as important as your email length. In fact, the ideal email subject line length should be under 50 characters. When you think about your email subject line strategy, shorter is always better.

Long email subject lines, that appear like this, “Applying to the position of internet marketing director” is going to get cut off by email readers like Gmail. And if the recipient is looking through applications on their mobile device, they won’t be able to see the entire email subject line.

What this communicates to your recipient is a lack of professionalism and understanding of how to craft an email subject line that’s effective.

Instead, choose a format like this:

“Sarah Smith - Internet Marketing Director”

While it might be a little long still, it is simple and clear. Avoid using your email subject line as an opportunity to sell yourself as well. This seems like a great technique but the recipient will perceive your enthusiasm as overwhelming.

Here is what that would look like:

“Want to increase sales 50%? Hire me!”

If The Job Application Email Address is a Personal Email

If your job application email address looks like the following, then continue reading this strategy: name@company.com

These strategies will work best for you when you know the hiring manager's name. You’ll be able to utilize that information to your advantage and create a compelling email.

The strategies are:

If The Job Application Email Address is a Company Email

If your job application email address looks like the following, then continue reading this strategy: department@company.com

These strategies will work best for you when you don’t know the hiring manager's name. The reason is that you don’t have any insight into who will be opening these emails. And you’ll need to take a more generalized approach to be targeted with your messaging.

The strategies are:

Job Application Email Examples & Methods

There are a few methods to ensuring that you send a job application email that contains targeted information that receives a response from your reader. Because you're essentially sending a "cold email", which is an email to someone you've never met before, your email will need to be engaging.

Primarily, our objective as writers of this email is to craft a short, yet impactful email that triggers the recipients desire to read the email message and place enough information about yourself to promote a response to it.

The methods are as follows:

Below is an example of how each method is to be used and what qualifications you should have in advance of attempting one of them when submitting your application.

Unique Company Insights Example

Our goal for this type of email is to align information that we’ve gathered about company objectives with achievements we’ve been able to accomplish. For example, a company wanting to increase sales and yourself having a strong track record of driving revenue. This is found through our Google search methods and through researching the job opportunity on the company website or the job post.

Here’a an example:

Dear [Name / Hiring Manager] —

I’m applying for the position of Sales Associate because I noticed your software tools fill a need in the market that I haven’t seen before. Your social media monitoring tools are something special and need the right Sales Associates to sell it. I have a strong track record of driving 4X sales per year for 3 companies.

I look forward to speaking with you,
Sam

Internal Personal Connections Example

When you might have a mutual connection within the business, it can be a great way to put your foot in the door. But don’t presume that the hiring manager reading the email knows the person you’ll name drop. That’s a common error. Instead, focus on what the person told you about the business.

Here’s an example:

Dear [Name / Hiring Manager] —

Ken, who works in your Marketing department told me so much about the environment's adaptive, collaborative ways. And I would love nothing more than to be involved in that. He expressed the companies objectives this year and it’s compelled me to apply for the position of Sales Associate.

I look forward to speaking with you,
Sam

Connections With the Hiring Manager

This method only works when you know the hiring manager's name, can look them up on LinkedIn and find a few mutual connections. Keep in mind, using LinkedIn in this fashion doesn’t guarantee that the person you’ll mention is a mutual connection. Instead, use the connections as a way to show your powerful network.

Here’s an example:

Dear [Name / Hiring Manager] —

I noticed we have a few common connections in the area, Ryan Jeffrey, Ian Heart, and other great software leaders. When this position came up, I knew I had to apply. I’d love to talk with you regarding this position. And if you are in close contact with those professionals, I’m sure they would vouch for me in this role.

I look forward to speaking with you,
Sam

Achievements That Align With Company Goals

This method works well when the hiring manager listed desired outcomes in their job listing. Without it, this method should probably not be used as you’ll be assuming the outcomes the manager wants to see.

Here’s an example:

Dear [Name / Hiring Manager] —

I appreciate the outcomes you were seeking on the sales side. In my past lives, I’ve been able to 4X sales for Microsoft, hire a sales team of 15 for Salesforce, and achieve a 15% YoY growth record.

I’d love to speak with you about the opportunity and learn more about what you’re looking for out of this role.

Thank you,
Sam

Writing Tips

Here are some of the best practices and considerations you should take into account while writing your job application email.

Job Application FAQ's

Below are common questions job seekers have when submitting their cover letter and resume by email as a job application.

Should I include my job title or job description as part of the email body?

If you reference the job title in your email subject line, you won't need to reference it again in the email itself. By doing so, it could distract from the clarity of your message. Regarding the job description, if you found the job posting online, it's always helpful for the receiver to see a link to the job description that was posted online.

What is a job application letter and should I include one?

A job application letter is your cover letter. And you should always include a cover letter and your resume when applying to a job by email.

What if I wanted to email about job vacancies or openings?

This type of email is not recommended when using the email template methods above. You should always email the employer separately and ask about any available job openings that aren't listed online.

Should I reference any of my work experience in the email?

Absolutely. If you have prior work achievements that your prospective employer might find valuable, you should include it as part of your email.

What if I don't hear back from the employer, should I send a follow-up letter or email?

Absolutely. Following up on your job application is a great way to show your enthusiasm for the position and increase the chances of a response rate from the recipient. In addition, this is a great way to show your business etiquette skills and written communication skills.

If you'd like to learn how to follow-up, read our guide here.

Should I ask what the hiring process is like in my job application email?

No. Focus strictly on providing your information, competitive advantage (work achievements), and why you feel you would be a good candidate for the position.

How can I stand out from other applicants?

The best way is to use our email template methods above. Use your previous work achievements or work experience as a way to stand out. Focus strictly on what you can provide to the company versus what you want from the position as a candidate

author: patrick algrim
About the author

Patrick Algrim is an experienced executive who has spent a number of years in Silicon Valley hiring and coaching some of the world’s most valuable technology teams. Patrick has been a source for Human Resources and career related insights for Forbes, Glassdoor, Entrepreneur, Recruiter.com, SparkHire, and many more.

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