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How to Write an Appointment Letter

When an employer identifies the candidate they want to hire for a particular position, it’s time to make an official offer via an appointment letter. We’ll explain how to write an appointment letter containing all the pertinent details and help you get to “yes” with your candidate. 

What is an appointment letter?

An appointment letter is a formal job offer that lets candidates know they’ve been selected for a position. In addition to making the job offer, it outlines the employment details like the start date and compensation. 

Why it’s important to send an appointment letter

An appointment letter gives the candidate all of the information they need to make a prompt and informed decision about whether to accept the job. This letter is an important formal step in the hiring process because it makes your choice official and documents your complete offer package.

It’s important to send appointment letters to keep your hiring process moving. Based on the candidate’s response, you’ll know whether your search for a particular position is complete or whether you need to keep looking. Plus, it serves as a starting point for any negotiations that will take place over the employment details. 

When should you send an appointment letter

When you identify a top candidate

A letter of appointment should be sent once stakeholders have agreed on a top choice for a particular job. Though you may prepare appointment letters for several top candidates in advance, sending only one letter at a time is important. 

When your top candidate has declined

If your first choice for the position officially declines, you can then send the next letter to your second choice. Don’t do this until you’re absolutely sure the top candidate is out of the picture; otherwise, you may find yourself in the awkward position of having to rescind an offer.

As soon as possible

When sending an appointment letter, timeliness is key. The letter should be sent as quickly as possible once a decision has been reached. Top candidates enter and exit the job market quickly, and a delay of even a day or two could cause you to lose a great applicant to another company. 

What to include in an appointment letter

A formal salutation

Open with a warm, professional greeting that sets a positive tone. You want the candidate to be excited to receive your letter.

The offer

Explicitly state that the candidate has been selected for the role and that this is an official offer of employment.

Employment details

  • Include full details of the position, including:
    • Job title
    • Job description
    • Salary
    • Start date
    • Hours
    • Benefits
    • Contingencies

How soon you want an answer

If you’re looking to move quickly or have another high-ranking candidate on the line, you may find it helpful to prompt the recipient to respond by a certain date.

New hire materials

Consider attaching additional materials, like further information on your benefits plan, that can aid the candidate in making an informed decision.

Sample appointment letter

Mr. Peters,

Thank you for your enthusiastic participation in our interview process. On behalf of the hiring team at Metropolitan Music Academy, it’s my pleasure to extend this offer of employment. Please find the offer details below for your review. 

Job title: Assistant Director of Curriculum

Job description: Support the Curriculum Director in developing innovative programming that supports the academy’s mission to provide affordable, high-quality music education to the Carroll Gardens community. 

Salary: $65,000

Start date: March 1, 2023

Hours: Monday through Friday, 9 AM to 5 PM, and occasional nights/weekends for events

Benefits: Employer subsidized medical, dental, and vision insurance available immediately upon start of employment. Option to enroll in 401(k) retirement savings plan after a 90-day probationary period. Five sick days and ten days of paid vacation time accrued at a rate of four hours per pay period. 

Contingencies: This offer is contingent upon a clean background check and drug screening to be completed within seven days of an accepted offer. 

Please review these terms at your convenience and kindly respond by 2/15. Any questions can be directed to HR manager Kathleen Sorenson at [email protected]

We look forward to your response.

Many companies choose to send an appointment letter after the hiring manager makes a verbal offer on the phone. This allows you to continue to build positive rapport with the candidate, personally share your excitement, and gauge their likelihood of accepting your offer. 

After you’ve sent the appointment letter, prepare a follow-up email to send two to three days after your initial offer if you have not yet received a response.