How to write a simple job application letter (plus example)

Updated 22 December 2022

Some companies ask applicants to include a cover letter with their CV when applying for a job. The letter gives you an opportunity to explain why you're the best candidate for the role. Knowing what information to include and how to format it can help you to create a professional cover letter. In this article, we explain how to write a simple job application letter and what information to include, describe how to structure it, list tips on how to create a professional document and provide an example you can use as inspiration.

What is a simple job application letter?

A simple job application letter contains information that enables a recruiter to evaluate your abilities and gauge whether you're a good fit for the role. It summarises your professional background relating to the role. A job application letter, or a cover letter, accompanies your CV when you apply for a job.

Related: How to use the best cover letter format (with examples)

How to write a simple job application letter

The purpose of a simple job application letter is to secure an interview and, ultimately, a job offer. The letter identifies the role you're applying for, your reasons for pursuing that role and your professional qualifications and experience. Taking the following steps can help you create a simple but professional letter:

Related: How to write a cover letter in 5 steps

1. Write your name and contact details

Start your letter with your full name, phone number, email address and the town or city where you live. Add today's date. If you have a work-related networking profile or a personal blog or website, you can also include the name of the site and its URL.

Related: How to use the best cover letter format (with examples)

2. Greet the recipient

Address the letter to the hiring company and include the company's address. If you don't know the hiring manager's name, call the company and explain that you'd like to address your job application to the right person. Then, address the hiring manager personally. For example, you might write Dear Mr Jones. If you're unable to find out the hiring manager's name, begin with a more formal greeting of Dear Mr/Mrs or Dear Features Editor.

Related: How to address a cover letter (with examples)

3. Add the reason for your letter

Explain your reason for writing the letter. Make sure you state the position for which you're applying. The following is an example of a reason or an email subject:

Example: RE: Political correspondent for the West Midlands Courier

4. Write your opening paragraph

State your current position and years of service. State your reasons for applying for the particular role at the particular company. Briefly explain how the role aligns with your career goals.

Related: 7 powerful ways to start a cover letter (with examples)

5. Highlight your qualifications and experience

Summarise your qualifications, experience and skills relevant to the role. Highlight any significant achievements and any industry awards you've received. Use this to substantiate why you're a suitable candidate for the role. Provide only the necessary details. For example, if you're seeking a role that's the same level as your current role, briefly explain why. The following are some common reasons for changing jobs:

  • relocating

  • better job prospects

  • greater job satisfaction

  • better benefits

  • current company restructuring

Example: I am a political reporter with 16 years of experience with both national and regional publications and am writing to apply for the position of political correspondent.

Related: How important is a cover letter?

6. Thank the recipient

Express your gratitude to the recipient for their time. Restate your interest in the role and why you're confident that your qualifications and professional experience fit the requirements. Specify your availability regarding the start date and add that you look forward to receiving an invitation to attend an interview.

7. End the letter

Sign off with the formal Yours faithfully. If you addressed your letter to the hiring manager or the recruiter by name, end with Yours sincerely. Leave enough space for your signature and finish by adding your full name.

Why and how to use a cover letter template in Word

Tips for writing a simple job application letter

Your letter aims to help a recruiter understand whether your abilities and personality are a good fit for the role and the company. It also demonstrates your written communication skills. The following are tips on how to write a great letter:

  • Study the job listing. Read the job listing carefully to ensure your professional experience and skills match the job requirements.

  • Pick out keywords. Identify keywords in the job description and use them in your letter.

  • Research the company. Research the company and its industry. This may give you insight into the company's mission statement, culture and goals and its status within the industry.

  • Use a professional font. Write your letter using a size 10 or 12 font in Calibri, Tahoma or Verdana. Use the same font throughout the letter to make it easy for the recruiter to read quickly.

  • Set consistent margins. Maintain consistent margins throughout the document. These are typically between 1.27 and 2.54 cm.

  • Set consistent spacing. Maintain consistent line spacing, leaving extra space between sections.

  • Limit the length. Ensure your letter fits on one page. Adjust the margins to accommodate this if necessary.

  • Be concise. Keep your letter concise and simple. Since it accompanies your CV, it's unnecessary to repeat its content.

  • Focus on the positives. Mention your professional achievements, such as any awards you received. This shows the recruiter how your experience can be an asset to the company.

  • Provide examples. Include examples of specific relevant skills, professional accomplishments and awards.

  • Proofread your letter. Proofread your document to ensure that it's grammatically correct and error-free.

  • Save your document. Save your document in the DOCX format to enable future editing, but also as a PDF file for submission via the company's website or via email. Give the file an appropriate file name, such as [Your name] [Job title] application letter.PDF.

Job application letter template

Here's a template you can use when writing your cover letter:

[First name] [Last name]
[Phone number] | [Email address] | [City]


[Company name]

Dear Hiring Manager,

[Express excitement for the position including the role title and the company name]. [Introduce yourself by explaining why you're applying for the job and how the job aligns with your career goals and what specifically draws you to the company].

[Explain your relevant experience and qualifications without repeating what's in your CV]. [Highlight one to two relevant achievements with facts and data when possible]. [Explain why you'd be a good fit for the company]. [Optional - address employment gap or career transition].

[Express gratitude]. [Summarise qualification]. [Restate interest in the role]. [Call to action + availability and preferred contact method]

[Complimentary close],


Job application letter example

The following is an example of a job application cover letter you can refer to:

Jane Davidson
01223 123555 | | Cambridge

November 2022

West Midlands Courier

Dear Hiring Manager,

I am writing to apply for the position of political correspondent for the West Midlands region. As detailed in my CV, I have spent seven years working as a political reporter for the Hillside Herald, most recently covering the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough region. I have a total of 16 years of experience as a political news reporter, including four years covering Westminster and Downing Street.

In my most recent position at the Hillside Herald, I led a team of three reporters, which entailed scheduling reporters and photographers to cover significant events and arranging official accreditations. I also managed a team of four freelance journalists, commissioning contributions, ensuring they met deadlines, confirming that their articles adhered to word counts and style guides and checking the accuracy of all submitted articles. Whilst based at Westminster, the Press Guild presented me with the Political Reporter of the Year Award for two consecutive years (2009, 2010). I believe my experience can benefit the West Midlands Courier.

Due to a forthcoming relocation, I now seek a role in the West Midlands. I am keen to join your political news team because the West Midlands Courier has a distinguished reputation for accurate and unbiased reporting.

Thank you for your time and for considering my application. I believe my experience and skills can benefit your publication and help the company achieve its goals. I look forward to your response and am keen to have a more detailed conversation about the position and how I can join your company.

Yours sincerely, Jane Davidson

Please note that none of the companies, institutions or organisations mentioned in this article are affiliated with Indeed.

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