It is proper business etiquette to send thank you letters, but many people
overlook this matter of courtesy. A thank you letter can make you stand out
from the other candidates competing for jobs, and in this tight job market, it
is wise to consider every tool that will give you an advantage.
To be effective, a thank you note should be sent before the hiring decision has
been made, so it is best to mail it as soon as possible after the interview.
When you send a thank you letter, you give the interviewer a chance to remember
you (imagine having interviewed 10-15 candidates for a position, and then
trying to distinguish each one after the interviews and trying to remember the
specifics about each person). It is your opportunity to mention any important
information you forgot to discuss during the interview.
A thank you letter allows you to explain, restate, or clear up any potential
misunderstandings. In addition, you can redirect your marketing campaign by
focusing on something that you learned during the interview and re-emphasizing
your strengths, accomplishments and skills. Sending a thank you letter shows
the interviewer that you are a professional who is concerned about details. In
the end, the thank you letter is your last chance to leave a good impression!
There are several situations that require a thank you letter:
After an employment interview
When someone provides you with job search assistance such as referring you to
an employer, providing a network contact, or speaking on your behalf to a
After an informational interview, Company visit, or other career exploration
Try to follow these hints when writing thank you letters:
Keep your letters short and simple - usually one page is enough.
- Help the
interviewer remember you by referring to specific points discussed in your
interview: show that you were listening and mention something that will refresh
the interviewer's memory of you
- Be sure your letters are professional, for
example: typed, no errors, on quality paper, etc.
- Send your letter within
one day - do not put it off!
- Emphasize your qualifications, especially those
that are most relevant to the position
- Provide any information that was
overlooked during the interview or that which was specifically requested by the
- Express your continued interest and enthusiasm for the position
very few people bother to send thank you letters - this can be your edge!
Generally, your thank you letters should include the following information:
Thank the interviewer for taking the time to meet with you (mention the date).
Remind him/her of the position for which you interviewed.
Restate your interest in the position and the Company/school/organization.
Mention something you learned from the interview or comment on something of
importance that you discussed. Again, emphasize your strengths, experiences,
skills, accomplishments and slant them towards the points that the interviewer
considered the most important for the position.
Once again, thank the interviewer for his/her time and consideration. If
appropriate, close with a suggestion for further action (if a second interview
is a possibility), or mention that you will follow up with a phone call in a
few days. Provide your phone number and the hours you can best be reached.
THANK YOU LETTER - Example
(Modified Block Format)
100 Pine Street
Albany, NY 12200
October 8, 1996
Ms. Janet Jones
Director of Research and Development
ACME Computer Company
1234 Central Avenue
Albany, NY 12204
Dear Ms. Jones:
I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for interviewing me for the
position of Senior Programmer in your Research and Development department. I
enjoyed meeting with you and I learned a great deal about the ACME Computer
This position sounds very interesting and I am confident that my education and
experience have provided me with the qualifications necessary to work
effectively with your team. I am especially pleased to know that you use the
Quadrini programming language, since I completed two courses in it and I have
used it extensively during my internship at General Electric.
Once again, thank you for the opportunity to interview for a position with your
Company. I am excited about the prospect of working with such a dedicated team
of professionals. If you request any additional information, please do not
hesitate to contact me. Thank you for your time and consideration, and I look
forward to hearing from you.
Sign your name
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