Why would you need a professional letterhead? Do you own your own business, or are you planning on starting one? Do you do business correspondence? Do you have a resume, with an accompanying cover letter? If you answered ‘yes’ to any of these, you need a professional letterhead.
As a business, you need a letterhead on all of your correspondence – letters, memos, invoices, web pages, etc. A letterhead on any personal business correspondence is a nice touch – be it a letter to a contractor, lawyer, physician, or any one with whom you do business. As a job seeker, you know the competition is tough right now; anything you can do to make yourself stand out and be noticed is a necessity. A personal letterhead on your resume and cover letter is a must.
How do you go about getting a professional letterhead? Well, you can pay someone to design a logo and letterhead for your business, and pay a professional print shop to produce pre-printed letterhead stationery and envelopes, or you can do it yourself. The professional designer may be a good idea; if you’re not conversant with design principles, paying for someone’s expertise is a good idea. If you are able to design it yourself, go for it, and you can save the cost of printing by creating document templates for use whenever you need it.
There are many word processor programs out in the market; to cover the majority of users, let’s look at Microsoft Word. You can get templates from Microsoft, or you can find templates on the Internet compatible with Microsoft Word, both for cost, and for free. You can also create a template yourself. Let’s start with getting and using a template from Microsoft:
Step 1: Download professional letterhead templates.
Method # 1:
a) Open save word templates or visit the category of Letterhead Templates from this site.
b) Type your desired letterhead’s name in search box and click on “Submit” or “GO”. A list of templates will appear in a new window.
c) Select one letterhead according to your needs and click on download bottom at bottom of it’s preview.
Method # 2:
a) On your machine, open your browser of choice. Enter http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/ in the address field and hit .
b) Once the page is open, you will see, in the middle column, “Get Templates”. Scroll down until you see a list of available templates, with “see more” as the last entry. Click on the “see more” link.
c) When the next page opens, scroll down until you see “Find templates for your favorite application,” with a list of office applications underneath. Click on the desired template.
d) For MS Office when the page opens, scroll down until you see the line “Top categories.” The last entry in the category list is “See all.” Click on “See all” and when the categories list is open, click on “Letterhead.” If you are on save word templates then just scroll down and select your desired template.
e) When the page opens, the leftmost column is titled “Products.” Underneath this heading is an entry for Word. Click on the Word icon.
f) When the page opens, click on the version of Word installed on your computer.
g) When the page opens, click on “Letterhead.”
h) A page of available letterhead templates will open. Search through them and choose the one best suited for your needs and download it by clicking the “Download” link and following the instructions.
Step 2: Customize template according to your needs.
Personalize the template with your information:
a) Open your version of Microsoft Word
b) Open the template you just downloaded
c) Utilizing the interface particular to your version of Word, navigate to the header
d) Enter desired changes in header
e) Utilizing the interface particular to your version of Word, navigate to the footer
f) Enter desired changes in the footer
g) Utilizing the interface particular to your version of Word, close the header and footer, and save the template with a name you’ll recognize.
To use the template repeatedly:
a) Open your version of Microsoft Word
b) Open the template file
c) Enter the changes in the body
d) Save under another name:
- Click “File”
- Click “Save As”
- Select file type ‘Word document (.docx)’
- Enter the new name for the document, and its directory
- Click “Save”
This gives you a personalized letterhead you can use as long as it suits your needs. The above instructions tell you how to get a template from Microsoft, and how to use it once you’ve downloaded it to your computer. The same principles apply for any template you download into Microsoft Word. Once you have the file open in MS Word, the steps are the same – customize it, and save it as a .dot(x) file with a name you’ll remember.
The other way to get a template document is to create one yourself. The steps involved are:
a) Open your version of Word, and create a blank document.
b) Utilizing the interface particular to your version of Word, navigate to the header.
c) Enter the designs/information/graphics you desire.
d) Utilizing the interface particular to your version of Word, navigate to the footer.
e) Enter your unique information/designs.
f) Utilizing the interface particular to your version of Word, close the header and footer.
g) Save the file with an appropriate name, and a file type of .dot(x).
This creates and saves a template file (.dot(x)) for you to use as described above. You have the freedom to create almost anything you can think of for your letterhead; however, you may need to use other design-oriented programs to create the graphics you desire. The process can be laborious – don’t get impatient and give up. When you’re done, you’ll be able to present a professional face to the world in your correspondence. And, as Martha says, that’s a good thing.