Section-C (Long Answer Questions)
Q. 1. Discuss the application letter. Why it is important? Give its various types.’
Ans. Application Letters: Application letters are written when someone needs a job. They are personal letters incorporating a few features of a business letter. Since the applicant seeks to see services, an application letter is a kind of sales letter and all the guidelines useful in writing and letters are applicable here. Only it is more difficult for the writer to say something about himself than about some product.
The first objective of an application letter is to obtain an interview. So the letter must be distinguished enough to attract immediate attention and to arouse interest. But it must not be me unusual or it may appear eccentric. It must convince the prospective employer that he can profit from the talents and services that the writer offers.
Types of Application Letter: There are two types of application letters. Solicited application letters are written in response to an advertisement. Unsolicited application letters are written at my writer’s initiative. In both cases, a resume of the writer’s own education, extra-curricular activities and experience must be given. Such a resume may form part of the letter itself or it may be written on an enclosed separate sheet called bio-data or personal record sheet.
The ‘you’ Attitude: Since an application letter is a sales letter, it must be written on the principles of the ‘you’ attitude. There is an interesting paradox involved here. The applicant is required to write ‘What I am’ and ‘what I have but he is required to give these details from the employer’s point of view. But it is not difficult to resolve this paradox. Before he settles down to write an application letter, the applicant must ask himself, “What have I got that an employer can use profitability”? The answer would include the following points :
- Academic qualifications, professional qualifications and experience that meet the prospective employer’s needs.
- The knowledge of his trade, of the nature of the job, of related jobs, of laws relating to business. 3. Special abilities like supervision, planning, selling, research, accounts, sales, promotions, etc.
- Personal qualities like imagination, industry accuracy, speed, initiative, alertness and moral values like loyalty, integrity, commitment etc.
Form and Contents of an Application Letter
- The Writer’s Address and Date: Generally the writer’s address is written at the right-hand top corner of the letter. The date invariably forms a part of the writer’s address. However, this address can also be written at the left-hand top corner. In such a case, it is good to say ‘From’ before Union the next line. This could then require writing ‘To’ before writing the inside beginning the address in the next line. This could then require a wi address. Also, in this case, the date is written at the end of the letter, beginning with the left-hand margin and on the same line where complimentary clause is written.
- The Inside Address: This depends upon whether the application is in response to an advertisement or is an unsolicited application.
(a) If it is in response to an advertisement: The advertisement may contain the name (i.e. the position and not the personal name) of the officer to whom the letter is to be addressed. In that case, the inside address will start with the status-name of that officer:
The Personnel Manager
National Rubber Ltd.
The Employment Officer
Bharat Refineries Ltd.
Indian Engineering Instruments
Sometimes the advertiser does not mention the name of the officer to whom the application is to be addressed nor is there any identification of the advertiser. The adverse Boxor Bag number to which the application is to be sent. In such a case, the inside address would.
(b) If it is unsolicited: The letter should be addressed to the appropriate officer:
The Personal Manager (The employment officer/The Manager etc.)
Guest, Keen Williams
- The Salutation: In almost all types of application letters, “Dear Sir” is the common salutation used.
- The Opening Paragraph: As in a sales letter, the opening paragraph should attract the attention of the reader and arouse his interest to read the letter further Since the letter is quite about a ‘product’, it is difficult to have an objective point in the ‘Opener to the letter. What required is to give a brief direct and summary like a statement. A few examples of good open paragraphs are given below :
(a) I request your favorable consideration of my qualifications for the position of … with a firm advertised in The Times of India, dated …
(b) Your advertisement in The Hindu, dated … for the position of senior accountants’ qualifications and experience.
(C) With my five year’s experience as the Assistant Advertising Manager of Lintas Ltd. I feel I am quite suitable for the manager’s post that you advertised in the Indian Express dated.
(d) Three years of my study and a full year’s practical training at the L & T Ltd. Workshop has prepared me for the post advertised by you in The Hindu dated … an Accounts specialization in Cost Accounting. Next month I am receiving my diploma certificate I.C.W.A and my training certificate from L&T, too.
(e) If memory, speech and practical application are the sine qanon of a good legal adviser, here is the proof that you find them all in me for the legal adviser position in your corporation..
(i) A first-class in LL.B. and LL.M..
(ii) A gold medal in the paper ‘Applied Law’s’ at LL.M. Cup Five firsts at the college, university and state level debating and extempore speech competitions.
(f) Mr. Waman Ambekar of your associate concern at Hubli told me of your desire to open your new branch at Panjim. I feel that my education and experience as an accountant in Sirur Agencies Ltd. Hubli would merit your consideration of appointing me as the branch in charge of your Audit firm, (Note: The last opening is not quite usual. It also presupposes that the writer has the permission of the named person to mention him. There are also some conventional openings for these application letters.)
(g) With reference to your advertisement in the Free Press Journals of 4th October, I wish to apply for the post f.
(h) In response to your advertisement …, etc.
(i) Referring to your advertisement in …, etc.
- Middle Paragraph: Once the opening paragraph has achieved its aim of arresting the reader’s interest, further work is easy. The middle paragraph, on the body of the letter, should now give the details of the important points mentioned in the opening paragraph. It has to give basic information about the applicant.
(a) Education, with grades, classes, ranks, and scholarship obtained (If there is nothing extraordinary about grades, classes, etc. golden silence would probably be the best.)
(b) Physical or health details: Date of birth and age, height and weight and general health condition.
(c) Marital status.
(d) Experience (with reason for leaving the job, If that reason is not going to adversely affect the prospective employer’s consideration of the application).
(e) Languages known: Specific hint about the knowledge of reading, writing and speaking in each language to be given.
(f) Nationality, wherever it is specifically asked for.
(g) Testimonials: Copies of testimonials to be attached to the letter, a note to that effect should be made here.
(h) Reference: It is always preferable to mention at least two person names and addresses to whom the prospective employees can refer the case for obtaining information about the applicant’s industry, honesty, sincerity, integrity of character etc.
6. Concluding Paragraph: The writer of an application letter seeks an interview with the prospective employer. Having told how and why the prospective employer could benefit by the writer’s qualifications and experience, the concluding paragraph should now strongly suggest to the prospective employer to‘act, i.e. grant an interview. It is here that many writers commit the mistake of using words that would win them the sympathy of the prospective employee, e.g.,
(a) Given an opportunity to serve in your esteemed concern, I assure you of my best service to my supervisors.
(b) I request you to be kind enough to give me an opportunity to serve in your reputed firm.
(c) If appointed I shall always endeavor to satisfy my officers under whom I would be required to work.
You should remember that jobs are not given in charity. The prospective employer will grant you an interview only if he finds you suitable for the post and not out of sympathy’. So just be simple and interview directly in asking for an interview. The following closing is quite effective :
(a) May I have a 15-minute interview in which to substantiate this statement anticipate and to answer your further questions?
(b) Although I have gone into considerable detail in this letter, there are probably questions that May I come in for an interview? You may reach me at the address you still want answers. May I come in for an interview? You maytelephone number given at the top of my personal record sheet.
(c) I hope to hear from you soon.
(d) I look forward to an opportunity to be with you at your convenience.
(e) I should greatly appreciate an opportunity to convince you that my service would be a souma investment.
7. Complimentary Close and Signature: The most commonly used complimentary close is ‘your faithfully, Avoid using such subscriptions as I have the honour to remain, Sir, your most obedient servant or i beg to remain, sir, your most obedient servant or your most obedients servant etc.
Below the signature is generally written in brackets the name of the applicant. In the case of a lady applicant her marital status is indicated by the use of the term ‘Miss’ or ‘Mrs.’ prefixed to the name.
8. Enclosures: It is always a good policy to mention the number of nature of the documents and other papers enclosed with the application letter.
(a) Bio-data: A recent trend in writing application letters is to write it in two parts: (i) the application letter itself, containing as an appeal to the prospective employer and (ii) the Bio-data or personal Record sheet, that gives detailed information about the personal qualities, education, experience, etc. of the applicant. This form is generally preferred by those who have something worth telling about their qualifications and experience, but those having just a normal or not so good a record of education and experience prefer to write everything in the main application itself.
(b) Application blank: Many of the government or semi-government undertakings have their own prescribed application forms that contain varied questions to be answered by the applicant. The completed application form itself becomes an application in a standardised letter. Sometimes the advertiser gives the form of the application in the advertisement itself. The applicants will then have to prepare their application letter strictly according to that form only.