How to Write a Cover Letter for an Internal Position

Written by Coursera • Updated on

A cover letter can help give you a competitive edge as a candidate, even when you're applying for an internal position.

[Featured image] A person in a black shirt and brown sweater reads over the cover letter for an internal position that's hiring.

Whether you are vying for a promotion on your team or angling to move into an entirely different role within your company, writing a cover letter reminding internal stakeholders of your contributions can help secure the support you’ll need to transition into a new position.

What to include in your cover letter

Your internal cover letter will be structurally similar to a cover letter you’d write for any job application and should include an introduction, one or two paragraphs detailing your experience, and a conclusion.

However, you’ll have a few distinct advantages over any external applicants because you are already employed within the company. As a current employee, you have first-hand knowledge of the company culture, experience embodying the company values, and access to specific company goals and data that may not be public information. Additionally—and perhaps most crucially—you have direct contacts within your company who can speak to the quality of your work.

Let’s take a closer look at how you can infuse your cover letter with each of those advantages.

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Part 1: Introduction

Like a typical cover letter, you’ll want to open by formally greeting the hiring manager for the position and introducing yourself. However, your introduction should reflect your familiarity with the hiring manager. For example, if you’re writing to your current manager about a promotion, you wouldn’t need to introduce the position you already have.

Instead, use your introduction to position how you envision your journey within the company. Set yourself up to tell the story of your growth throughout your time with the company so far and into the future, and align your narrative with company culture and values.

Tip: Because you are already working within the company, you can likely find an opportunity to personally connect with the hiring manager for this position before you introduce yourself in your cover letter. Whether it’s your current manager or another team lead, preview your interest in this new role before submitting your cover letter. Request a meeting or an informational interview with the hiring manager to better understand their needs and further tailor your cover letter.

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Part 2: Relevant experience

In the body of your letter, highlight how your efforts have directly impacted key company results. Recall the goals and metrics that your organization’s leaders have pointed to as measures of success throughout your time with the company, and connect those to your individual responsibilities and contributions.

There are three main points to include in the body of your letter:

  1. Share your accomplishments as they relate to larger company goals, using data to support your claims as much as possible.

  2. Demonstrate growth throughout your time with the company, pointing to role expansions or added responsibilities.

  3. Express how you hope to help continue company progress in this new role, specifically establishing how you’ll use your skills to fulfill the department’s needs in service to greater company goals.

With these three points, you can establish the narrative of your growth from when you started at the company and into the future.

Part 3: Closing

As with any cover letter, conclude by restating your request for consideration and asking for the next steps you’re hoping to achieve.

If you haven’t been in direct contact with the person you’re submitting this letter to, you can also include an invitation to contact a reference within the company who can speak to the quality of your work, such as your direct manager. Alternatively, you can ask your reference to proactively reach out to the hiring manager on your behalf, letting them know to expect your application and that they support your application.

Cover letter for internal position example

To help you think about your internal cover letter, here is an example:

Dear Ms. Moore,

Thank you for talking with me about the open project manager position on your team. I’ve enjoyed watching your team’s collaborative approach from my viewpoint as an executive assistant this past year and am excited about the potential to merge my administrative experience with the forward-moving project management perspective here at Company A.

As the Executive Assistant to Mr. Curtis, Chief Marketing Officer, I’ve had the opportunity to support logistics on key launches such as our national commercial campaign for Product X. After zero missed deadlines, consistent and clear communication, and a successful launch, I was able to continue that momentum by coordinating with our social media team on Instagram and Facebook campaigns. The social media campaigns amplified our reach to a global market and resulted in a 20 percent increase in website traffic on days of the posts and a 50 percent increase in Product X sales.

I’ve so enjoyed working with various internal and external stakeholders throughout my time at Company A thus far and witnessing the impact of our organized collaborative approach. In fact, it has inspired me to earn a Professional Certificate in Project Management from Google.

I would love to continue my growth in the project management role on your team. Should you have any questions about my work, Mr. Curtis is willing to affirm my commitment to the company. Otherwise, I look forward to hearing about next steps from you in the process.

Thank you,

Orly Sanchez

Next steps

Get additional guidance as you prepare your resume and cover letter with the Guided Project Create a Resume and Cover Letter with Google Docs on Coursera. Further demonstrate your skills in a variety of areas like data analysis, social media marketing, and UX design with a Professional Certificate from industry leaders like Google, Meta, and IBM. Sign up for Coursera today and begin a 7-day, full-access free trial to browse more personal development courses.

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