Career Development

How to Write a Promotion Request Letter

November 23, 2020

Writing an effective promotion request letter can be an important step in earning a new position. A well-written and well-timed letter may increase your chances of being considered for a promotion. The letter should highlight your value to the company, your ability to succeed in a higher role and position yourself as a viable candidate.

In this article, we explain how to write a promotion request letter and provide a template and sample to help you compose your own.

What is a promotion request letter?

A promotion request letter is a written document intended for your supervisor to request consideration for a higher position at the company. The letter should explain why exactly you deserve the position you’re asking for. Writing a promotion request letter at the right time can also increase your chances of getting a promotion, as companies frequently hire internally and value initiative. 

Although you can email a promotion request letter, submitting a physical copy is a more professional approach. You can also send it via certified mail, so you will be notified when the letter is delivered. Keep in mind that your promotion request letter should always be accompanied by an in-person conversation with your supervisor.

Related: How to Write a Professional Email

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How to write a promotion request letter

Here are the most important elements of writing a successful promotion request letter:

1. Send the letter at an appropriate time

Your first step is determining when the letter should be sent. Keep in mind that your request for promotion should not be a surprise to your manager. It is best to invest in many meaningful conversations over time about your performance, your desire to advance in your role, ways you can improve and utilize your strengths and what you want from your career. If you haven’t had these types of conversations, it might be best to wait and begin expressing these thoughts to your supervisor in a one-on-one setting.

If your supervisor has acknowledged your proven performance over time and ability to expand your roles and responsibilities, it might be a good time to submit your promotion request letter. Again, instead of simply sending or emailing your letter, schedule a time for you and your supervisor to go over the letter in person together in a one-on-one meeting. This will give you the opportunity to explain certain points in detail and answer any questions your supervisor may have.

2. Use a professional heading and salutation

If you are sending a physical letter, begin with a formal heading that includes your name, position, contact information, the date and then the recipient’s name, position and contact information. If the letter is an email, use a clear and informative subject line, such as “Promotion Request.”

After the heading, open your letter with a professional greeting, such as “Dear Mr./Ms.” and the last name of your employer. If you have a more casual relationship with them, it is appropriate to use their first name in the greeting.

Related: Formatting Your Business Letter: Definition, Tips and Examples

3. State your request, then detail your qualifications

After the salutation, begin the body of your letter by directly and specifically stating its purpose. For example, you can begin by saying, “This letter is to request a promotion from my current role of marketing associate to the open role of marketing director.

Next, use a few brief paragraphs to outline the achievements and experience that qualify you for this role. Describe the specific skills that make you a good candidate for a higher position. Some things you may include are:

  • The time you have been with the company
  • Relevant experience to the higher position
  • Your education or certifications relevant to the position
  • Successful projects you have completed with measurable impact
  • Why you think you can excel in the new role
  • Thanks for your manager’s help or contribution to your career
  • Your loyalty to the company

4. Offer solutions for filling your current role

Since receiving a promotion likely means you will vacate your current role, you can offer to help find or train someone to take over your current position. This offer shows your leadership skills and helps ease the transition period.

5. End the letter

After the body of your letter, use a brief final paragraph to express your thanks for their consideration. You can also restate your desire to be promoted and ask if there any next steps you can take to be considered for the role, such as scheduling an interview.

End the letter with a professional closing, such as “Sincerely,” and your signature and typed name.

Related: How to Prepare for a Promotion Interview

Promotion request letter template

Consider using this template for a promotion request letter to help you write your own:

Your Name
Your Title
Your contact information

Date

Recipient’s Name
Recipient’s Title
Recipient’s contact information

Dear [Mr./Ms. Last Name],

Thank you for taking the time to read this letter. The reason I am writing to you is to formally request that I am taken into consideration for the open position of [desired job title].

I have been working hard in anticipation for such an opportunity, and I am ready for this next challenge. I also believe that I have had enough success in my current position to be considered for a promotion. In the past year I have:

[Briefly describe accomplishment 1 with numbers]

[Briefly describe accomplishment 2 with numbers]

Although I am proud of the achievements listed above, I also know that I am part of a team, and I am thankful to you for helping and supporting me at every step of the way.

I know that the role of [desired job title] will require more time and a new set of skills, but I feel I have the qualities required to successfully fulfill the job’s responsibilities. An example of that would be [a specific situation that highlights the skill set needed for the desired job]. Also, having been with the organization for [number of years], I am invested in the success of [the company] and want to be part of seeing it thrive.

Because an eventual promotion will leave my current position vacant, I will help ensure a smooth transition, however I can. Several current employees have worked with me directly and have the potential to take over my job responsibilities, and I would be happy to train them to take over.

I would be very grateful if you consider me for this promotion and thank you again for your time. I would be happy to schedule an interview at your convenience.

Sincerely,
[Your Name]

Related: What to Expect from an Average Promotion Raise

Promotion request email example

This sample promotion request email may help inspire you to write your own:

Subject: Sales Manager Position 

Dear Ms. Gilmore,

I would like to formally request that I be taken into consideration for the open position of regional sales manager.

I have been working hard in anticipation of such an opportunity, and I feel I am ready for this next challenge. I also believe that I have had enough success in my current position to be considered for a promotion. In the past year I have:

-Boosted company sales in my allocated sector by 30%, compared to the previous year.

-Trained several new employees who are still with the company and doing well in their positions.

Although I am proud of the achievements listed above, I also know that I am part of a team and I wouldn’t have been able to do them all by myself. I am also thankful for your help and support during my career.

I know that the role of sales manager will demand more of my time and require a new set of skills, but I feel I have the qualities required to successfully fulfill the job’s responsibilities. An example is a situation from last autumn when the outgoing sales manager was on a month-long health-related leave of absence, and I successfully managed their role and responsibilities. Also, having been with the organization for three years, I am invested in the success of Howard’s Sales & Marketing, and I want to be part of seeing the company thrive.

Because an eventual promotion will leave my current position vacant, I will help ensure a smooth transition, however I can. Several current employees have worked with me directly and have the potential to take over my job responsibilities, and I would be happy to help train them.

I would be very grateful if you consider me for this promotion, and I thank you for your time. I would be happy to schedule an interview at your convenience.

Sincerely,
John Cortez
Sales Representative
(541) 937-4532
cortez.john@email.com