Write an Acceptance Letter
You've just gotten the good news--you've landed the job! Before you go out to celebrate with your friends, you've got an item of business to attend to: writing a formal acceptance letter. Luckily, it isn't hard. All you have to do is thank your employer, formally accept, confirm your work details, and sign off respectfully. Keep your letter brief and positive, and you'll be golden!
Writing the Heading and Body
- Start with a heading containing your employer's contact information. Starting off with a formal heading is especially important if you're sending your letter by mail, but it can't hurt to make an email look extra professional. Include the date, the full name of the company representative, and the name and address of the company. Format it in a heading like so:
- August 8, 2019
- Mr. Benjamin Flores
- Hiring Manager
- Brainy Books Publishing
- 423 Culver Street
- Anytown, CA, 93204
- Thank your new employer for the offer and formally accept. Address your letter to the person in the company who directly offered you the position. For example, write, “Dear Mr. Flores, I was very happy to receive your email offering me the position of Assistant Editor at Brainy Books. I am writing to formally accept your offer.”
- Keep the introduction brief and professional. There is no need for a lot of gushing about how you've wanted this job since you were a kid. You can, however, add in a sentence about how you'll be a good match for the job. For example, “I know that I'll be a good match for the job and am excited to start.”
- Specify your start date and supervisor. The acceptance letter is a great place to get down in writing the details that you discussed verbally in the interview. Write, “To confirm, my start date will be September 5, 2019, and my supervisor will be Ms. Celia Brooks.”
- To suggest a start date that you haven't discussed before, write, “I would like to start on September 5, 2019, and am open to discussing if another would work better.”
- If you know what team you'll be working on, mention it. “I'm looking forward to meeting the rest of the [name] team.”
- Confirm your salary and benefits. Although you will formally sign a contract with your salary and benefits later on, it's best to have them down in writing as soon as possible. This will clear up any confusion in case you and your employer have different ideas. Write, “According to what we discussed at the interview, my base salary will be $45,000 and I will receive health and dental insurance.
- If you agreed on other specific accommodations at the interview, this is a good place to mention them. This might apply to you if you have a disability, or are a nursing mother, or need to work from home occasionally for some reason.
- Let your employer know about any pre-booked vacations. It's awkward to ask a new employer for time off before you've even started, but sometimes you have no choice. If you've already booked expensive, nonrefundable plane tickets, or if you have a big event to attend, like a wedding, your employer should work around your schedule. Write, “As we discussed in the interview, I will have to take the week of November 4th off because I will be attending my brother's wedding.”
- Mentioning your trip in your acceptance letter makes your acceptance contingent upon them giving you this time off, which is a good way to make sure they follow through.
- Think about it: if your employer won't let you take time off for a really important event, then you probably don't want to be employed by them.
- Ask any questions you have. If you have any lingering questions about the job, mention them near the end of your letter. This is a good place to put in any questions that you didn't have a chance to ask at the interview, or that you thought of afterward.
- Keep the questions brief and positive. For instance, it's fine to ask, “Could you put me in contact with other women of color who work at the company?” or “Is there anything I should do to prepare before I start?” but it's probably not a good idea to ask, “Is it okay if I quit in two months?” or “Do you have any tips for not dying of boredom in the office?”
Signing Off Your Letter
- Thank your interviewer personally. If the person who extended the job offer is the same person who interviewed you, extend them a personal thank you. Write, “Thank you for making me feel welcomed in the interview. I appreciated your warmth, and enjoyed discussing books, baseball, and the publishing world with you.”
- If the person you're addressing did not interview you, just thank them generally. “Thank you for this great opportunity.” You can also mention the name of the person who interviewed you, if it's a small company, like "I really enjoyed talking with Dr. Abrams during my interview."
- Include your contact information. It's a good idea to include your email address and phone number. You can also include your mailing address if you want. Write something along the lines of, “I look forward to joining the team on September 5, 2019. Until then, feel free to contact me at email@example.com, or call me at (123) 456-7890.”
- Sign off formally, even if you're writing an email. Whether you are sending an email or writing a letter, now is not the time for a cute “xoxo” sign-off. Use “Sincerely” or “All the best” and your full name.
- If have a built-in email sign-off with a bunch of cute emojis, make sure to delete it before you send the email, to keep things professional.
- If you are typing the letter to print out and mail, then leave a space to hand-sign the letter, above your typed name.
- Proofread for errors. Read through your entire letter for grammar and spelling. Make sure that you have used “your” and “you're” in the right contexts, and “its” and “it's.” Double-check that you've spelled your employer's name correctly, and addressed them with the correct title, such as Mr., Ms., or Dr.
- Little mistakes and typos can make your letter seem unprofessional, and you want to set a good first impression.
- It can be helpful to have a friend proofread your letter to catch any mistakes you may have missed.
- Send your letter by email or mail. Sending your acceptance letter by mail is more formal and old-fashioned, but is by no means required. Many companies are perfectly fine with getting their acceptance letters by email.
- A good rule of thumb is: if they sent you an offer letter by mail, you should send your acceptance by mail. If they sent you an email, or gave you a phone call, then you can reply by email.