How To Write A Good Reference Letter (with sample)

Last Updated on August 18, 2022

Reference Letter

Whenever we want to recommend someone for a job, position, or opportunity, a reference letter comes into play. This involves giving comments on individual character traits, behaviour, ability, and relevant qualities. It can be used to give an account or provide information about a candidate’s personal attribute and character traits that helps them perform better, which could be to an employer, organization, or to school, by a third party.

What is a Reference Letter?

Reference letters are letters written to give an account of an individual’s skill and capabilities. It’s a letter that gives an account of the skill and capabilities of another person by a third party in a positive way. It normally comes from the point of view of someone who has worked or has not worked with the Candidate in any professional capacity before but can attest to the candidate’s personal abilities and character. Such as a coach, volunteer leader, family members, friends, teacher, principal, supervisor or boss, etc. This enables the employer to have an insight into the candidate’s personality, skills experience, and traits, which helps in knowing if the candidate would be a good fit for the organization.

How to write a Reference Letter?

Below are step-by-step format to follow in writing a reference letter:

  • Begin by explaining your relationship with the candidate: Here you give a clear and specific relationship between you and the candidate. For instance, you can say “I know jack as a volunteer in a press club society.
  • State how long you have known the candidate: In this section, you should mention the number of years you have known the candidate. For example, “I have known Benji for more than 8 years.
  • Include positive personal qualities with specific examples: It’s required you mention at least three personal qualities that would help the employer have a better understanding of the candidate and how that would be of benefit to the company. Such as; communicative skills, positive attitude, efficiency, dedication, commitment, leadership abilities, intelligence, self-confidence, etc.
  • Close with a statement of recommendation: In the close paragraph, you declare your recommendation in your concluding statement. You can say,” I highly recommend… (Add the candidate name), then state the cause for which you’re recommending the candidate, it could be a scholarship, job opportunity, admission, etc. Then you close with a professional closing, “Sincerely” or “Best regards”, and write your name.

Why is it important to write a reference letter?

  • It’s important because it gives details about the candidate’s skill, abilities, and experience.
  • It provides details about the character, strength, and capability of a candidate.
  • It’s also considered important because it provides basic information and details about a candidate which can be used as a testimony about the individual.

Sample of Employment Reference Letter

Aniekan Rose

23 Aka Road

Uyo, Akwa-Ibom State

July 24, 2021

Daniel Okon

34 Ikot Ekpene Road

Uyo, Akwa Ibom State

Dear Hiring Manager,

I have known Peter park for more than 8 years. He and I met while volunteering as scouts for the Red Cross society campaign and he so offered his consulting services to my small business, and also In helping me to improve my web page and in increasing my web traffic.

Peter is one of the most talented, hardworking, committed, and positive-minded individuals I have had the pleasure of working with in any capacity. He is also kind, compassionate, and never misses an opportunity to render help to others when the need arises. Once, while we volunteered together at the Red Cross campaign club, the event coordinator took I’ll. Peter stepped in to complete plans for the program and ensure that the campaign turned out to be a huge success. He worked tirelessly and selflessly to see each person in the locality was adequately attended to and provided with the needed support.

Peter is the type of person you can trust to keep a cool head in a stressful situation, his positive attitude is contagious.

I highly recommend Peter for the position of Advertising Manager and I am very positive he would be a valuable asset to any organization that’s fortunate enough to have him on its team. If you have any further questions or inquiries please feel free to contact me.


Jacob Abraham



When writing a reference letter ensure accurate and correct information and details about the candidate, ensure to know the candidate so as not to give wrong or false information to the recipient about the candidate as the letter would serve as a testimony about the candidate.

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