How to Recommend a Friend or Colleague for a Job

You might come across a situation where you know a friend or colleague who is job-seeking and could use a little “push” or extra help in their search. Potentially, this friend may actually be interested in working at a place you have worked before or where you have connections. If you are comfortable with it, you can help your friend by writing a brief recommendation note to your contacts, once you’ve talked with your friend and know for sure that he or she is applying.

But what to say? Here’s a brief template you can adapt to help your colleague:

Dear Ms. Employer,

How are you? I hope all is well. I know your organization is currently recruiting for a position of <job title>. I don’t know if you are open to referrals for this position, but in case you are, I would like to put in a good word for a <friend/former colleague/classmate/friend’s kid/etc.> of mine, <My Friend>.

I’ve known <Friend> for the last # years, and in my experience, he is (reliable, trustworthy, hard-working, collegial etc.). We worked together on XYZ project, and he was one of the best contributors to the team. Our challenge was (XYZ) and he helped solve the problem by <doing XYZ amazing thing>. He also has a proven commitment to the field of <insert mission area here> as shown by his years of experience/volunteering in the field. Last but not least, he is very dedicated to your cause and he told me this would be a dream job for him.

I would be glad to answer any questions you may have about <friend>. Thanks for your consideration, and have a great day. Best,

<Your Name>

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