DerrJones Recruiting Solutions

The Interview Thank You Letter

An interview thank you letter can help distinguish you from your competition as you're interviewing for a new opportunity. As a recruiter, I'm continually amazed that professional level candidates don't think about interview follow up as an important part of the job search process. I also know how important this follow up is to creating a lasting impression with the hiring manager.

Interview Thank You Letter

Candidates who send an interview thank you letter after their interview get extra points from hiring managers. This is critically important, so let me reinforce this point:

Candidates who do appropriate interview follow up get extra points from hiring managers.

I should add that they will get extra points from recruiters as well! This is critical interview advice that will pay off for you in a big way in your job search.

A short thank you note to your interviewer is good interview etiquette, and if done correctly, can be a deciding factor in bringing you back for a second round - or giving you the job. It's a chance for you to reinforce the message you delivered during the interview, and if needed, an opportunity to strengthen your message if you are unhappy with the way you handled a particular question.

This area is so critical that we have prepared Interview Thank You Letter Samples that you can customize for your own use. If you have any questions about the elements of a good follow up letter, you can follow our guidelines to create a great letter that will make you stand out from the crowd.

Quick Tips on Interview Follow Up:

  • Timing - a thank you letter must be sent promptly. The good impression you're trying to make can do just the opposite if it takes you a week to get the note out. Timing sends a message. Prompt follow up tells an employer you're interested in what they have to offer. It also suggests that you're organized, responsible, professional...need I go on??
  • Format - In today's environment, it's perfectly acceptable to send a thank you letter via email. That being said, a handwritten, personal note will make a stronger impact. You can also follow up the old fashioned way, with a typed letter sent via the U.S. mail. All of these formats are acceptable. The important point is that you're doing the appropriate follow up to the interview.
  • Who to Thank - This one's easy. Everyone needs to be included. You should send an interview follow up letter to everyone you met for any length of time. Look at your itinerary for the day. Everyone listed - plus anyone who was added to your schedule - should be included on your list.
  • Content - if you get an interview thank you letter out quickly, these notes can be fairly brief. The important components include: a basic thank you; 2-3 sentences that relate back to your specific conversation; 1-2 sentences about how your skills match what's needed; and finally, an optimistic close.

Follow our advice and send out interview thank you letters. You will make a lasting impression on the hiring manager and others you've met. You'll be granted more follow up interviews than your competitors, opening up more opportunities for you in your job search.

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