Every growing business needs an employment offer letter. But what should be in it? Here are the answers - and a free template to get you started.
What is an employment letter? 🤔
Depending on the jurisdiction, an employment letter is sometimes known as an: employment contract, offer letter, employment verification letter, or a proof of employment document - but they all exist for the same reason. If you’re an employer, the employment letter is used to formalize the hire. The employment letter usually confirms the job details for the candidate, with information on salary, working hours, employment terms and conditions, and more.
It might be followed by a separate, details employment contract; or it might form the legal basis of your employment on its own. It might also contain details and additional documents relating to benefits, share options, and other key considerations.
Free employment letter template ✨
If you find yourself snowed under a backlog of hiring manager requests as your company scales and continues to ramp up hiring, then contract automation might be an effective solution for you. Here’s an employment letter example to get you started.
This can be used as part of an automated process that can help people and talent teams save time, delight candidates and increase time-to-hire. Check out our options below to get this employment letter as a PDF or as a draft in the Juro platform. If you click the final link, you can create a free account and use the employment letter template as part of your workspace.
Who uses employment letters? 📄
The people who use employment letters often fall under three categories.
People and talent teams, or HR. These functions are responsible for business growth through employee headcount. They usually act as the candidate’s main point of contact throughout the hiring process
The hiring manager. This depends on the role, but often the hiring manager will want to weigh in on the potential candidates joining their team. A head of sales, for example, may want to input on the candidates applying for a sales rep role. The hiring manager is also responsible for the offer letter itself, adding in key details about the role
The candidate. The most important stakeholder in the hiring process, the candidate is the most affected by the employment letter
"Securing a new hire should be an exciting moment for both the candidate and the employer - so make sure this excitement is reflected in your employment letter"
What does an employment letter look like? 👀
There are several features that are common to most employment letters. These include:
A note confirming the offer, congratulating the candidate, and welcoming them into the new role
Offer details, including salary, position, start date, details of the line manager, and so on
Various T&Cs covering data privacy, working time regulations, probation, etc.
Share options for new joiners - this is more common in startups and scaleups, as an incentive to their employees
Most employer letters are also branded with the business’ logo. This allows the employer to establish their brand and offer consistency throughout the business.
How to write an employment letter ✍️
Securing a new hire should be an exciting moment for both the candidate and the employer - so make sure this excitement is reflected in your employment letter. Here’s how you can write a good employment letter that candidates want to sign.
1. Get to the point
Don’t fill your employment letter with legalese and confusing jargon. If candidates can’t understand the offer letter they’re reading, then chances are they’ll take longer to sign it. For most candidates, this document is the first interaction with the company, so it’s important that the employment letter makes a strong first impression.
Keep your writing clear, concise and friendly, so your candidate has a positive experience and feels assured with their decision to join your team.
"Personalizing an offer letter might take a little bit more time, but the end result is an employee who knows that they’re not just another cog in the machine receiving a mass-produced contract"
2. Be open and transparent
Make sure the most important information is clear to access and read. This includes start date, salary, line manager details, etc. Your candidate should have the necessary information to hand in order to make a decision, and hiding the information in the depths of the employment letter can discourage candidates from accepting the offer, setting a bad impression of your business. Check out our employment letter sample for ideas on how to structure your contract.
It’s also important to set clear expectations for the candidate - how long do they have to make a decision? If they accept the offer, what are the next steps? If onboarding will happen remotely, what does that entail? Don’t shy away from providing more information - if anything, offering this sneak peek into how the business works will make them even more excited to join.
You offered the role to this candidate for a reason - make your offer personal by telling them why. If the interview panelists had positive feedback, be sure to include it in the employment letter. If you were wowed by the candidate’s presentation skills in a final round interview, make sure you let them know. Personalizing an offer letter might take a little bit more time, but the end result is an employee who knows that they’re not just another cog in the machine receiving a mass-produced contract - it’s definitely worth it.
4. Delight your candidates
Companies like Monzo, Slack, and Stripe know how to incorporate the delight factor into their employment letters. Little touches to your contracts - from emojis, to GIFs, to even having the CEO hand-sign the employment letter - can make a huge difference. These small changes can help people and talent teams win big, with an offer that is irresistible, at a company that cares about its employees. It’s the difference between landing a brilliant hire, and missing out altogether.
Want to automate employment letters?
“The time I spend replying to candidates and negotiating terms has been reduced by 75 per cent thanks to Juro”
- HR Business Partner, Curve
By automating your offer letters with Juro, people and talent teams can shorten time-to-hire and give candidates the onboarding experience they deserve. Get in touch to find out more, or explore our case studies with Deliveroo, Curve, and Tempo.