Letters Templates

Letters to employers and educators

Pro forma letters have been prepared that Reservists and Commanding Officers can use as a starting point for correspondence with employers.

The letters to employers are divided into the following categories:

How to use the letters

Some of these letters are suitable for the Reservists to send directly to their employers or educational institutions while others should be sent by the Commanding Officer or designate. For instance, initial requests for military leave should probably come from Reservists unless they believe that such a letter would be ineffective and a letter from the Commanding Officer would carry more weight.

The letters are generic and should be seen as a "starting point" only. Feel free to personalize or otherwise amend as necessary. Square brackets surround information that should be customized or that is optional, depending on circumstances.

NOTE: A unit commander should not send any letter or contact an employer in any way on behalf of any Reservist without a signed privacy waiver from the Reservist.

Format

The letters are provided unformatted. They should be prepared as correspondence to non-military addressees in accordance with A-AD-121-C0/FP-000 (DMPD) "Staff and Writing Procedures for the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Forces." They should, of course, be printed on DND letterhead.

Certain points should be kept in mind if new letters are being created or if the samples are being customized. For instance:

  • Tone is extremely important and should always be positive, open, direct, friendly and professional;
  • Never complain. It is not always what you say, but how you say it, that will make the difference;
  • Sell the concept before asking the price. The letter should review the benefits that will accrue to the employer from the military activity before requesting military leave;
  • If possible, find out if the company has a policy governing leave of absence for military training and note this in the letter. Ensure the writer is familiar with the terms of the policy. If the letter comes from the Reservist, it is acceptable to note that the request is either in accordance with the policy or is an exception. If the writer is the Commanding Officer, use personal judgement in this matter – it may raise questions in the employer's mind about why an "outsider" is familiar with internal company policies;
  • Use civilian language and terminology in a natural tone;
  • Use the first and second persons (I/we and you);
  • Avoid military jargon, acronyms and abbreviations;
  • Use proper terminology: Reservists, the Reserve Force, Naval Reserve, and so on, in accordance with the National Defence Act, not the Reserves, Reserve Forces, Naval Reserves, etc.

Letter of Recognition

A simple letter thanking an employer for time off goes a long way and should be written anytime that leave is granted. Sample letters are also provided that are suitable for Reservists to send directly to their employers and letters that are designed to be sent by the unit commanding officer.

 

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