Frequently we receive requests from a relative, friend, colleague or former coworker, junior staff members, students as well as bosses to write a letter of recommendation.
What is that? Why would people who do not even know you think a recommendation letter from a different unknown person?
Because a recommendation letter isn’t merely what it says. While it does function as a sort of’assurance’ a jobseeker or candidate has good character or particular qualities and skills a company is looking for, it has many more uses too.
Uses of Letter of Recommendation
Ever heard about Employee Background Screening (EBS) or Pre-Employment Verification (PEV) or similar sounding processes? I will explain briefly.
EBS, PEV, and other similar procedures are in fact checked that an employer conducts in your own background. That means, they’ll verify most details you write in your resume.
You will find various businesses that offer this service.
Now an EBS service provider will contact everybody – from college to ex-bosses, former coworkers and managers. And they will contact the persons that’ve given that recommendation letter too.
In other cases, the organization might directly contact the person who has given this letter.
And here’s something you need to remember: a recommendation also involves legal risks in a few countries.
Legal Risks of Letter of Recommendation
Yes. Giving this letter also entails legal danger. Potent legal risks. This usually means the individual or company issuing this correspondence is legally responsible for the content.
In certain states, a person or organization issuing this letter may face penalties. That is if the individual holding this letter violates a business law, is found inefficient or other such factors.
Consequently, you have to be extra cautious when registering and writing a recommendation letter. You may not property in legal problems.
But issuing this letter for somebody who you don’t actually know can mess up your superb reputation in your society or profession.
However, that doesn’t mean that you turn off anyone and everyone that requests a recommendation letter.
In fact, this letter will help change someone’s life for the better.
Using these basic ideas can help you compose an superb letter of recommendation and save any hassles. Keep your language simple and easy to understand.
Find Goal of the Letter of Recommendation
People of all types need a recommendation letter for a variety of purposes. Therefore, find out what is a letter of recommendation and the specific purpose of why this letter is necessary.
When you understand the function, it becomes very easy to write a brief recommendation letter. In fact, short letters are much better than long twisting ones. Because the longer your correspondence, the deeper its implications.
Know the Individual
Knowing the individual for you are writing this letter is indispensable. Unfortunately, managers at big corporations with dozens or more employees often neglect this easy tip.
When you know the person, you will have some understanding about their personality and capabilities. This makes it a lot easier to write one.
Imagine if a person you do not understand but functions at your organization requests for this particular letter? In such situations, ask their colleagues and immediate seniors for information such as attitude at work, productivity, and other essentials.
Or better still, call the individual and talk for a couple of minutes to know them a bit. But, calling a individual may be impossible if they are working at some remote place for your own organization.
Provide Neutral Views
Remember, you’re responsible directly for that which goes to a recommendation letter. Therefore, be impartial. Mention all their positive characteristics of character both as person and employee on your letter.
If the person has some undesirable qualities, you can cite those in another way. For example, you may use words like’satisfactory performance’ in case an employee hasn’t met the criteria of your organization.
And if the man or woman is idle, use words such as”good performer when moved well.”
Maintain it Conditional
This means, you’re indirectly recommending the individual for a job or position. How’s this possible? Include words such as”I would recommend…provided they meet your criteria.”
This implies, you’re absolving yourself of any legal obligations that might arise out of the recommendation letter.
If you use words such as”provided they meet your standards,” the ball is in the other party’s court.
Therefore, the new company should confirm if the jobseeker meets their criteria. And if they employ the person without such verification, they are squarely to blame.
Conclude with Disclaimer
Always conclude your correspondence using a disclaimer. To do so, include a sentence for example:”This recommendation letter is given upon request to…for whatever purposes it may serve. This organization isn’t liable whatsoever for the contents of this letter.”
Understandably, this might seem rude or objectionable. Someone who gets the recommendation letter may even object to the clause.
Here, it is important to note that you are talking about the liabilities of your company. Therefore, it has nothing to do with the individual to whom you’re devoting the recommendation letter.
Also Read:- Everything You Should Know About Salary Slip
And needless to say, this letter is always given upon request. Thus, you’re merely stating the truth.
List of Appreciation v/s Letter of Recommendation
There is a vast difference between a letter of appreciation and a recommendation letter. If you’re writing this letter for somebody you know well and genuinely respects you, issue a letter of admiration.
In these scenarios, you can love the individual for their job. If you find that they have a nice character, add a couple of lines on that too.
Additionally, talk about the job or work for that you’re enjoying the person.
Conclude this type of letter by expressing gratitude to the individual due to their exceptional work. And add a line as recommendation for example:”We’re confident they could meet your standards,” or something comparable.
Using:”We are hopeful…” rather than”We’re convinced…” provides you with that vital ambiguity. This means you’re being fair and honest to everyone: the person that receives the letter and the person who reads it to give a job or work.
If you’re writing this letter for a student, do this with no reservations. However, focus more on the academic qualities of a pupil rather than personal traits. Especially if the student is a teen.
That is because teens are vulnerable to personality changes and mood swings during those years. It is not their fault. A docile and mild-mannered teenager can grow into an aggressive bully a couple years afterwards.
Therefore, restrict your recommendation letter to the academic skills of your student. In the event the recommendation letter is to get a job, speak about the skills they have, so it will aid them in their career.
This way you are helping the pupil without being judgmental about their personality.
Letter of Recommendation for LinkedIn/ Online Uses
If you understand the person, fine. Go right ahead and compose an excellent letter of advice on the aforementioned lines.
In reality, you can consult with my templates I am providing alongside this report. They will provide you a few suggestions about how best to write a superb letter of recommendation.
In some instances, a bank or financial organization might ask for this letter to provide a loan or fund some purchase.
This is not common practice in India, even though it’s performed in some foreign countries. Be cautious before you recommend anyone to get a credit or loan: you might end up owning their obligations if they default.
Additionally in some states, individuals applying for senior managerial or supervisory posts need to find this letter out of their juniors.
That is done to guarantee the person has total control over the energy that an organization invests in them. This prevents the misuse of powers.
However, these are rather uncommon in India, though the trend may appear here anytime, provided the penchant for Indians to replicate foreign systems. For that reason, it’s better to be aware of these tendencies.
Before I wrap up, here is something to remember.
A recommendation letter is an indirect guarantee of the person’s abilities as a employee and character as a human.
Consequently, project a suitable picture instead of going overboard to please someone or playing too closely to avoid problems. The aforementioned tips would definitely help you draft amazing letters of recommendation for anybody.