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Best Practices for Writing a Personal Recommendation Letter (with examples) 

A personal recommendation letter is a special request and requires great attention to make fit. You may have been asked to write a letter of recommendation and therefore have questions or find yourself wondering the best way to go about writing one. This article by CareersInGrocery.com describes the best methods to use for writing a professional letter of recommendation. 

What is a personal recommendation letter? 

A personal recommendation letter is like a reference that employers might ask of their applicants, which is commonly done over a phone call. However, yours will be in writing. Your letter offers knowledge of the individual and your opinion of their candidacy for the corresponding role. 

There are various scenarios where someone might ask for a personal recommendation letter. The most common one is when someone is applying for a job, but they may ask for one for college applications, or even for a mortgage. In this article, we will focus on a letter of personal recommendation for a job. 

Structure of a recommendation letter 

The components included in a recommendation letter are similar to those of any formal business letter. They include: 

  • Header 
  • Opening 
  • Body  
  • Closing 
  • Signature 

Each component contains different steps, which are listed as follows:  


The header includes your identifying information as well as the date, then the recipient’s information. Identifying information for you is: 

  • Name 
  • Address 
  • City, state zip 
  • Phone number 
  • Email address 

You don’t need to include the recipient’s phone number or email address 


The opening utilizes a proper salutation. You can use “Dear” or if you don’t know the recipient’s name you may use “To whomever it may concern”. 

The next part is your introductory paragraph which will include a positive statement of purpose, identifying for whom you are writing and why. 

Body Paragraphs 

In the body of your letter, start by explaining how you know the candidate, where you met, and how long you’ve known them. Make it clear why you are qualified to present their personal and professional qualities. 

You want to give the potential employer a firm understanding of why the person is well-suited for the position. Talk about their relevant traits and skills, and from there, expand into the specific reasons that they are well-equipped for the role. 


Make a quick statement that summarizes why you would recommend this person for the role. Offer to provide more information if needed. Your contact information is in the heading, so the person will know how to reach you. 

Use a friendly closing before you type your name. For example, “sincerely”, is commonly used. Be sure to leave four lines of space before you type your name so that you can sign it by hand as well. 

Personal recommendation letter example 

Janet Smith 

48 Grocery Street 

AnyTown, AnyState 11111 




May 10, 2022 


Karen Wellesley  

Human Resource

Fresh Foods Foundation 

25 Freshly Avenue

AnyCity, AnyState 11111 


Dear Ms. Wellesley, 

It’s a pleasure to write this letter of recommendation for Mary Jones, in support of her candidacy for the position of writing intern at Fresh Foods Foundation.

I’ve known Mary for over 10 years. I’ve been her gymnastics coach since she was a child and, in that time, she’s consistently demonstrated a creative, dependable, and strong work ethic. In her teen years, she babysat in our neighborhood and created original stories and crafts to entertain the kids. It was an immense help for the parents to have her watching the children, and the children loved her.  

Since then, Mary has matured into an educated young woman, succeeding in English and writing classes. Her transcripts indicate she has been an honor roll student throughout her educational journey. She also possesses multiple professional recommendations from the school that display her ability to achieve many different accomplishments. Because I’ve known her on a personal level, I’m not surprised that she is flourishing in these endeavors. She is determined, hardworking, and loyal. 

Mary would be a great benefit to your company, and I am happy to recommend her for the position. Please feel free to contact me with any questions you may have. I would be happy to further discuss my recommendation. 



Janet Smith 

A letter of recommendation is an honor. The candidate would like you to speak about them and help them climb their career ladder and succeed in life. Be sure to follow these steps by CareersInGrocery.com in writing an effective letter of recommendation!