Check out our ready-to-use thank you note templates, as well as answers to the why, how and when of sending thank you notes after a job interview:
Why You Should Send a Thank You Note:
First and foremost, sending a thank you note is a polite gesture that shows your appreciation to the interviewer for taking the time to speak with you. Aside from good manners, sending a thank you is another great opportunity to keep yourself relevant and can be used to your advantage as another chance to stand out amongst other potential candidates. Sending a thank you opens the door for future communication and places your name in front of the hiring manager one last time.
Additionally, a well-written follow-up note will reiterate to the interviewer the reasons why you are the best fit for the position. Last and definitely not least, failing to send a follow-up may leave the impression that you’re not interested, which is exactly what you’re looking to avoid in this situation.
How to Send a Thank You Note:
Email is business standard today, but that’s not to say a handwritten note is not appreciated. Sending a thank you via email has many benefits. It provides an easy way for the interviewer to respond, guarantees that it is sent to whom it is intended for and allows you control of when it will be received by them.
When determining whether a handwritten note is appropriate, context is important. Several factors come into play, one being the method by which your interview process was set up. For instance, interviewing with one individual versus several can warrant a more “personal” thank you. Another situation where a handwritten note is preferred is when you are interviewing for a new position within your current organization, possibly for a role in another department.
When to Send a Thank You Note:
Timing is a key factor – It’s all about finding that sweet spot of when to “hit send.” Following-up immediately (e.g., within 20 minutes of finishing your interview) may imply you didn’t put much thought or effort into your note and comes across as generic rather than genuine. On the other hand, leaving too much time between the interview and follow-up could reflect disinterest.
*Rule of thumb: Send a follow-up within 24 hours of your interview
Some basic timing guidelines to follow:
If your interview was in the morning (8am-12pm) – aim to send by the end of workday.
If your interview was in the afternoon (1pm – 5pm) – aim to send by 11am the next day.
What to Write in a Thank You Note:
To a certain extent, the length of your thank you note should coincide with the length of your interview. A shorter phone interview might not call for as long of a written follow-up. If you didn’t set a time to meet in person during the initial call, follow up with a quick thank you for the opportunity to chat and express your interest in learning more about the position and company.
If you’ve already met in person, you should now have an even better understanding of what the position entails. List specific examples from your interview to emphasize how well your skills align with what they are looking for. Highlighting specific moments from your conversation can go a long way, as it adds a personal feel to your note. This will help differentiate you from other candidates.
1. Always ask for contact information so sending a thank you is easy!
2. If you’re interviewing with several people, multiple thank you’s are needed. It’s okay to use similar formats for all recipients, but add personal details from your conversation when possible.
3. Don’t overthink it! A thank you note is a gesture intended to express your appreciation and shouldn’t determine whether you receive the offer.