It seems that everyone, at some point or another in their lives, will be requested to write a letter of recommendation. No matter what position you occupy, employer, friend, neighbour, teacher, most people will be called upon to write a letter of recommendation. Writing a letter of recommendation might seem like a daunting task if you do not know where to start or how to proceed. Fortunately there are a few resources available to make your life easier.
The first part of a letter of recommendation should state how long you've known the person for and what kind of relation you have to this person. If the person is an employee, write out the term of employment and describe their daily activities and responsibilities. When you learn how to write a letter of recommendation, this section will come naturally.
Writing.org provides information on all kinds of text styles
In the second paragraph of the letter, you may want to elaborate on the responsibilities of the person and how they performed. Provide a detailed evaluation and do not hesitate to provide specific examples and explain how it is to work with this person. When writing the letter of recommendation, the second paragraph is the ideal place to discuss the strenghts and weaknesses of the person you are recommending.
In this last and final paragraph, it is important to summarize what you have describe and explain your overall decision to recommend this individual. This last section is designed to be more broad and to provide a good feeling to the reader about the person you are recommending. Indicate to what degree you would recommend the person for the position they are applying for.
Now, as a business owner, I used to write letters of recommendations all the time and it used to take anywhere from 5 to 6 hours. Writing out the letters would involve many long nights and annoyingly painful revisions. Recently however, I've been testing out this book which is specifically designed for writing professional business letters.
So far I've been getting better responses in less time using the techniques illustrated in the book. When I don't have time (or just don't feel like writing a letter... which happens more than it should), I just use one of the 63 templates included in the book. Its a bit of a shortcut as I believe people should spend the 6 hours to write a proper letter, but more often than not the template takes 5 minutes and provides a better result.