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Formswift: Write a professional letter of recommendation with our template

Save time with our clear, professional letter of recommendation template. Fully customizable to suit your needs, it makes writing a letter of recommendation a breeze.

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What’s a letter of recommendation?

A letter of recommendation is written by a supervisor, teacher, or coworker, recommending the recipient to a potential employer, college admissions office, or other opportunity.

It’s sometimes referred to as a “character reference”, covering the person's character, work ethic, and achievements.

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Popular types of letters of recommendation

These come straight from your professors, teachers, or academic advisors.

This personal reference showcases your intellectual prowess, dedication, hard work, and potential for success in your chosen field.

Whether you're applying for scholarships, graduate programs, or research positions, a stellar academic recommendation letter can make all the difference.

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Seeking a new job or a career change? Look no further than the employment letter of recommendation.

Former employers, supervisors, or colleagues can vouch for your professional skills, work ethic, and accomplishments to your potential hiring manager. These letters provide valuable insights into your performance and can help you stand out from the competition.

During your application process, add a resume, reference letter, and cover letter to create a powerful portfolio.

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Sometimes, it isn’t just about what you've achieved professionally or academically.

Character recommendation letters speak to your personal qualities, integrity, and values. They can come from mentors, community leaders, or individuals who have witnessed your exceptional character in action.

These letters can be particularly impactful when applying for volunteer positions, community initiatives, or leadership roles.

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Eyeing that advanced degree? Graduate school recommendation letters are your golden ticket.

Typically provided by professors or academic advisors, these letters highlight your research capabilities, critical thinking skills, and potential for scholarly contributions.

A strong recommendation letter can help you secure admission to competitive graduate programs and even funding opportunities.

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Networking is key in today's interconnected world, and recommendation letters can be powerful tools for building professional relationships.

These letters, often requested from industry experts, influential figures, or mentors, validate your expertise, achievements, and reputation. They can be instrumental in establishing credibility and forging meaningful connections in your field.

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How to write a great letter of recommendation

When it comes to crafting a compelling letter of recommendation, knowing what to include and leave out is essential.

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What a letter of recommendation should include

Begin by introducing yourself and your relationship to the person you're recommending.

Provide context about how long you've known them and in what capacity. This sets the stage for the reader and establishes your credibility.

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Back up your recommendation with concrete examples of the person's skills, accomplishments, and character traits.

Share anecdotes or instances where they displayed exceptional abilities or went above and beyond expectations. These specific examples bring your recommendation to life and make it more impactful.

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Highlight the individual's key strengths and unique qualities. Focus on their professional or academic abilities, personal attributes, and relevant skills.

Discuss their reliability, teamwork, leadership potential, problem-solving skills, or any other qualities that make them stand out.

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If you're writing a recommendation in a competitive context, such as academic scholarships or employment opportunities, it can be helpful to compare the person to their peers.

Provide insights on how they stack up against others and why they deserve recognition or consideration.

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Wrap up the letter by summarizing your endorsement and expressing confidence in the person's abilities.

Offer your contact information in case the recipient has any further questions or wishes to discuss the recommendation in more detail.

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What not to include in a letter of recommendation

Avoid inflating the person's achievements or providing inaccurate information.

Honesty and integrity are vital in a letter of recommendation, and false claims can harm the person's reputation in the long run.

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Stay on topic and avoid including irrelevant or overly personal details.

Stick to professional or academic accomplishments and relevant character traits that directly relate to the purpose of the letter.

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A letter of recommendation should be positive and supportive.

Don’t include any negative comments or criticisms that could undermine the person's chances or paint them in an unfavorable light.

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A recommendation letter should be all killer, no filler.

While you should definitely be enthusiastic, avoid empty praise.

You should always ensure your recommendations are genuine, supported by tangible examples and achievements.

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Frequently asked questions

The length of a recommendation letter will vary depending on the situation. But as a general rule of thumb, aim for a letter that spans one to two pages, striking the perfect balance of depth and brevity.

This is a classic question. A recommendation letter serves as a powerful endorsement for a specific job, scholarship, or opportunity. On the other hand, a reference letter provides insights into a person's character or work experience.

While both types of letters provide positive endorsements, the main difference is that a recommendation letter is typically more specific, and often related to a particular role or opportunity. While a reference letter is more general and could potentially be used for multiple purposes.

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