Module 28 - Job Application Letters
As PP 28-15 shows, to target a letter,
Use the web to find information about the company and job field.
Review the company’s organizational culture.
See what general knowledge is necessary for the position.
Speeches, websites, annual reports, job postings, and media releases are all
good sources of information.
Can I use T-letters? LO 28-5
Yes, if the employer prefers them.
T-letters are a cross between a traditional job application letter and a
résumé. Some employers prefer them, but if job applicants are
uncertain, they should use a more traditional job letter and résumé
combination. PP 28-16 shows the basics of writing a T-letter, and PP
28-17 shows a sample solicited T-letter.
To create a T-letter, applicants should first determine the duties of the
job. A want ad or job description is a good source for information; if
none is available, they should research the kinds of skills that are
needed typically for the job, focusing on key skills. Then, applicants
should create a two-column list, with duties in one column and
descriptions using active verbs or gerunds of how the applicants match
what the employer wants in the other. The lists should be organized,
with bullet points where useful.
Teaching Tip: A table format often works well to organize lists in a T-letter, which
should be attractive and professional. To help students better understand how to
create good design for paper documents, have them refer to Module 5’s Building a
Critical Skill box (p. 80).
What applicants say in the opening paragraph is determined by whether the letter is solicited or
unsolicited, as discussed earlier in this module. Most importantly, they should ask for an
In-Class Exercise: Have students review Figure 28.6 (p. 484). How well does this
T-letter express the job duties and how the writer meets them? Is the information
organized neatly and clearly? What might students change about the letter? Why?
Given the choice, would the students prefer to use a T-letter or a more traditional
letter and résumé combination? Why?
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