E mail –etiquette. Formal  Writing Rules.

Basic etiquette for writing and sending a formal email

Email is one tool that is use during job search process now, its role in the process cannot be underestimated and as a job seeker you need to be informed on how to send a formal email as you will be using email to do a variety of things during and after your search period. In order to get your email read by your recruiter, there are some basic email etiquette that need to be in your email. When you are using email to job search or for formal purpose, it’s important that all your communications are as professional as possible, your job search emails need to be succinct and well formatted in such a way that the recruiter will be more likely to read it. Formal email should be just formal, which means emoji’s and sign offs with a little jokes should not be used. Adding little smiles to the text does not change how words come across. Instead, focus on keeping your messages short, focused and straight to the point.

Some etiquette for formal email are:

  • Set up a job search email account.
  • Choose a simple font.
  • Use a clear subject line.
  • Avoid abbreviations.
  • Break your message up into easy to read paragraphs.
  • Proofread and edit.
  • Send a copy to yourself

Set up a job search email account: When starting your career journey and searching for a job, it’s a good idea to have a separate email account just for your career messages. That way your professional email won’t get mixed in with your personal mail. You’ll also be able to easily check for messages from prospective employers and networking contacts as any mail from that account is already known to be a career related mail.

Choose a simple font: Avoid the use of difficult to read fonts such as freshstyle script as it may make your email to get deleted immediately opened, because recruiters don’t have the time to spend trying to decode your message. Make use of simple to read and basic fonts like Calibri, Times New Roman, or Arial because these fonts makes your text easily readable. Don’t use colour in your text, either. However when writing your mail use size 10 or 12 point, so that the email is easy to read, without being too big.

Use a clear subject line: During job hunting, the subject line of your email is one of the most important parts of the email message you send to your prospective employer. If you leave the subject blank, the email is likely going to end up being deleted. Ensure you list the role you are applying for in the subject of your email message, so the recruiter or the prospective employer knows what job you are applying for.

Avoid abbreviations: As you continue in your career path, when writing a formal email avoid the use of abbreviations or the use of social media slang such as dis, or anoda etc. because they will make you look unserious and will send a wrong message of you to your prospective employer. If you use those abbreviations in your formal email, that email is likely going to end up in a spam mailbox.

Break your message up into easy to read paragraphs: If you want to get your email read by your prospective employers and recruiters then your message will need to stand out among the thousands of emails in their congested inbox. This means you have to be intentional in formatting your email message by breaking it up into easy to read paragraphs that is short, clear and concise.

Proofread and edit:  When sending a formal email ensure you proofread your email for as many times as possible, because you will not want to miss an opportunity as a result of mistakes. Clear and error free writing is very important in an email. If you’re sending job hunt email messages, it is necessary to ensure that the message is perfect before sending it out.

Send a copy to yourself: Also, always send a copy of your email to yourself before sending it out to the recruiter or your prospective employer. Because once you click Send there’s no undo or turning back and any mistake or problems may send a wrong message about you to the recruiter. Also it will enable you to have an easy record of the emails you have sent and the jobs you’ve applied for.

However, it is important to know that a successful email can make the difference in whether you know about a job opening, whether you get to the interview and whether you get the job. Email communication offers a fast and efficient way to introduce yourself to potential employer and make a good impression even before you meet them. It also provides a way to follow up after an interview without having to go to the company building. Therefore you have to ensure that your email projects you and your skills in the best possible light by following these basic etiquette step by step when writing a professional email.


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