Letter of Inquiry

What do you do if you really want to work for a specific company but are unable to find any job postings for that employer that fit your skill set? A prospecting letter or letter of inquiry is a type of cover letter you use to reach out to an employer, without being in reference to specific job opening. In it you will want to:

  • Indicate your interest and reveal your source of information.
  • Outline your strongest qualifications—focus on broader occupational and/or organizational dimensions to describe how your qualifications match the work environment.
  • Do some personal marketing: Convince the employer that you have the personal qualities and motivation to contribute to the organization.
  • Suggest an action plan. Request an interview, and indicate that you will call during a specific time period to discuss interview possibilities.
  • Express appreciation to the reader for his or her time and consideration.

Sample Letter

(Your Address and phone number)
Jan 12, XXXX

Mr. Mike Recruiter
Director of College Recruiting
East-Coast Mercantile, Inc.
1202 Somewhere St.
Baltimore, MD 21205

Dear Mr. Recruiter:

I read your company’s description in NACE’s Job Choices: Diversity Edition and would like to inquire about employment opportunities in your management training program. I want to work in retail management and would like to remain in the Baltimore area after graduation.

I shall receive my B.S. degree in media and communication studies this May. My interest in business started in Junior Achievement in high school and developed further through a variety of sales and retail positions during college. My internship with a large department store convinced me to pursue a career in retail. When I researched the top retailers in Mid-Atlantic region, East-Coast Mercantile emerged as having a strong market position, an excellent training program, and a reputation for excellent customer service. In short, you provide the kind of professional environment I seek.

My resume is enclosed for your consideration. My education and experience match the qualifications you seek in your management trainees, but they do not tell the whole story. I know from customer and supervisor feedback that I have the interpersonal skills and motivation needed to build a successful career in retail management. And my relatively extensive experience gives me confidence in my career direction and in my abilities to perform competently.

I know how busy you must be during this time of year, but I would appreciate a few minutes of your time. I shall call you during the week of January 23 to discuss employment possibilities. In the meantime, if you need to contact me, my number is (410) 222-1234 and my e-mail is achen1@umbc.edu.

Thank you very much for considering my request. I look forward to talking with you.

(your signature)
Amy Chen