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I am applying to a job as an analyst working with the fire department to help allocate resources more effectively. The job reports to the fire captain and at the end of my cover letter I was going to write something like:

Thank you for your time, your service, and your consideration.

First, I don't know if this is in bad taste. Second, I'm not sure about the wording because it seems to equate my thankfulness of their service with that of their time and consideration (of me in this role). Given that the last two are much more important to me personally than to society, I'm seriously considering keeping it in but re-writing it.

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    It is rarely inappropriate to thank anyone. Especially those who don't get thanked often enough. I make it a point to go out of my way to thank folks stuck in annoying-but-necessary roles like parking enforcement, simply because so few others ever will.
    – keshlam
    Commented Sep 19, 2023 at 20:19
  • I think its a good idea, go for it. Commented Sep 20, 2023 at 4:45

4 Answers 4

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The best way to express the thought that "the fire department does very important work and I'm really grateful for it" is in a sentence that says that as part of explaining why you want to work there.

Tossing ", your service, " into a closing sentence is in some ways too weak and dilute for getting across "I sure think it's swell you're there doing that job as part of that organization" while risking looking smarmy and insincere. So go ahead and add an entire sentence that comes right out and approves of the existence of the fire department, somewhere early in your letter. Maybe something like:

As a data analyst I normally support businesses in their drive to make a profit by producing products people really want, or saving money. [or whatever your contribution usually means from a business point of view.] A big appeal to me of this position is [something idealistic and lovely about how important the fire department is to your locality, and the impact your work could have in, I don't know, preventing fires, or getting firefighters to them sooner, or saving lives or whatever.]

This will flatter the chief far more than the typical "thank you for your service" and answer "why do you want to work here" and solve your issue around how to close your letter.

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    Best answer by far. "I want to work here because it makes a difference" is a great message to send. It both communicates that you appreciate their work and that you would be an enthusiastic employee.
    – user45590
    Commented Jun 9, 2017 at 14:27
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    I think this is probably a better way to express gratitude for the reasons given and also because it takes the focus off the hiring manager. If done right it wouldn't be taken as flattery of a person who is making a decision important to me, it would be a recognition of the entire team, Thank you, i think this is a much better way.
    – kleineg
    Commented Jun 9, 2017 at 14:44
  • This is a fantastic answer. I will use something like this in my next cover letter!
    – Masked Man
    Commented Jun 9, 2017 at 14:54
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Telling a firefighter "thank you for your service" when you expect nothing in return comes across as generous and appreciative.

Telling a firefighter "thank you for your service" in a context where you hope to get something from that person comes across as self-serving flattery.

Even if you have the best of intentions, it isn't a good look. Don't do it.

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    This is exactly why I was wary of including it. If I do not get the job I generally write a letter thanking the person for their time and maybe it would be more appropriate then. But definitely not when they are making a hiring decision and it could come off as a cheap way to manipulate them.
    – kleineg
    Commented Jun 9, 2017 at 14:47
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Shorten it to:

Thanks for your consideration.

You are applying for the job as an individual, and not meeting them as a representative of the society. Your cover letter is not the right place to thank them for their service to the society.

There is a time and a place for everything. If you feel strongly enough to thank them for their services, do that separately after your job application process is concluded.

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  • Thank you for your time and consideration. Can also work. In any case omitting the service part is the only thing for certain.
    – Leon
    Commented Jun 9, 2017 at 11:26
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    @Leon Sure, that will do too. Personally, I prefer saying "thanks for your time" when the other person has spent a significant amount of time, for example, at the end of an interview. Saying that for taking 10 seconds to read the cover letter sounds somewhat insincere and sarcastic to my taste, but YMMV, of course.
    – Masked Man
    Commented Jun 9, 2017 at 11:30
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Well I do not know if saying thanks could be misunderstood especially if there has been an exchange between two people. Except you have another intention, I'd rather you left your thanks as it is because it might warm up the fire fighter's mood, either for you or for the next beneficiary. That's how I see it.

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