How To Write A Professional Thank you Email After An Interview

Knowing how to write a professional thank you email after an interview can get you hired

Getting through an interview is intense. It not only consumes your thoughts during the strained few minutes you're interrogated but is a bee in your bonnet both before and after as well. Naturally, the time leading up to an interview is spent preparing and researching for potential questions.

But many ask what we can do afterward other than wait. Well, knowing how to write a professional thank you email after an interview could work like a charm!

Business people waiting for results of interview
Use your time after an interview to write a professional thank you email

There's more to do after an interview than just twiddle your thumbs and wait for a response. That involves reaching out to the company – or preferably people – who interviewed you to thank them for their time.

While it is an excellent gesture to thank anybody, in this scenario, a thank you note after an interview serves a self-serving purpose as well: it keeps you in their mind. In this article, we will be discussing how to write a professional thank you email.

Thank you notes after an interview is more important than you think!

Recruiters interview and screen dozens of candidates in a day. But they don't make their decision the second they see you. They wait until they've seen the very last candidate before making up their mind.

Friendly caucasian employers and african-american applicant handshaking, welcoming at interview
It's not easy to leave an impression in an interview

For some, that might be at the end of the day, but for others, the decision to choose from an outstanding pool of talent might wait a few days. After the time lag, only the most memorable leave an impression and are easily recalled during decision making.

A thank you note is a physical reminder that's hard to ignore. It practically screams, "I was here!" not letting the panel forget you so easily.

A thank you note after an interview is not standard, so it's something that makes you stand out. They won't throw it away but will most likely store it with your file. When reviewing your data, the thank you note will make you pop a positive reminder of who you are.

A professional thank you note against an open envelope isolated
A thank you note after your interview can leave a memorable impression on the panel

Interviewing candidates is just as stressful for the people interviewing you. It takes a lot of time, and at the end of it, they're pretty exhausted. A thank you note after an interview will make them feel appreciated and create a positive impression of you. It will mitigate any reservations they had during the interview and reflect positively on their perception of your character.

Companies want people who are amicable and easy to work with. A thank you note after an interview goes to show that you are understanding, cooperative, and polite – all of which are critical traits for somebody who works well in a team.

Add a unique detail

A thank you note after an interview should be able to help the reader recall who you are instant. Writing a generic message followed by your name is not enough to set a spark.

A person adding a key detail to his professional thank you note
Don't forget to add a key detail to be recognizable

You don't want the interviewer to be scratching their head when they get the note wondering which candidate you are out of the dozens they've interviewed. To make a thank you note effective, you should know how to write a professional thank you email.

Add a crucial detail discussed during the individual interview. Mention how much you enjoyed your discussion on a particular topic like Pepsi's controversial ad campaign. You may thank them for answering your question on supply chain partners or explaining a specific problem.

To avoid falling into the trap of having a mundane interview that would be forgettable, ask a question towards the end, which is different and unique from what is typically asked. Ask something which lies in the interviewer's area of expertise or about the organization that is hiring.

I have a question
Ask a question to avoid a mundane interview

Asking an issue which the interviewer knows about will create room for discussion different than the majority and energize them. Referencing it in your thank-you note will make it easier for them to remember who you are. Always consider this while thinking of how to write a professional thank you email.

Print and electronic go together

A lot of people often get confused while writing a professional thank-you letter over which form of media they should use to send the thank you note through; paper or email? The answer is both. But not at the same time, preferably with a gap of a few days in between.

A businesswoman writing on a paper and looking into her computer
Print or Email?

Forbes recommends sending a handwritten note after an interview one or two days later and an email follow-up after three or four days. Typically you should send a physical letter saying thank you by the next day.

If you're traveling from afar, then write one by hand and leave it with the receptionist, with instructions to deliver the next morning. Or send it by post the very same day.

People often underestimate the power of email, thinking that it'll get buried under hundreds of others. That is not always the case. Most large organizations have a dedicated staff member (or members) who correspond to every email.

According to surveys by CareerBuilder and Accountemps, most employers in the USA say that a thank you note in the form of an email is acceptable.

Content matters

The gesture of sending a thank you note after interviews is charming, but the shine only lasts if what's inside continues to dazzle. It should be able to hold the attention of the reader and impress at the same time. That doesn't mean writing elaborate poetry, but rather more about keeping it polite, memorable, and easy to read.

Word writing text Great Content
Make sure to write great content

Recruiters don't have much time while screening through hundreds of candidates. They probably won't spend much time on your thank you note either. That's why you should keep it brief and write in short paragraphs.

Short paragraphs create white space in the letter drawing attention to the words. Even those with the smallest of attention spans will be more likely to go through all of it. Also, if you're on a first-name basis, keep the tone formal. It indicates that you are serious about working and showcases professional behavior.

At the end of the email, write your full name and contact details, and "thank you" instead of "thanks." They will already have your CV, so there's no need to send it again, but a link to your LinkedIn page at the bottom will make it easier to check your credentials to jog their memory.

Also, don't forget to add your "unique detail," and a skill, qualification, or experience which would be an asset to the job. End the note hoping for the possibility of another meeting to discuss your ideas further.

And lastly, reference the date and time of your interview in the subject of your letter to make it easier for them to find your file.

Be prompt and specific when you write a professional thank you email

This is a very crucial aspect to consider for understanding how to write a professional thank you email. A postponed letter of thank you is less significant than an immediate answer.

An interviewer with a professional thank you note in her hand
Be prompt when sending a thank you note or an email

If you are writing a letter of thanks for a job interview, send it that afternoon or next morning basically within a day or two, expressing your gratitude towards the act of kindness of an individual.

It's almost a pointless exercise if you don't take a minute to add a personal line or two to your message. People will feel a generic response of gratitude, and it'll have no significance. That said, you don't have to overdo it with thanks, just a quick line or two.

How to write a professional thank you email?

If you are wondering how to write a professional thank you email, it is often more important how you write it. To make your thank-you note more effective, the correct format will always be helpful. The right size for how to write a professional thank you email is as follows:

Header -You and your contact person details will begin with the date. Include your contact information after your signature if this is an emailed rather than an actual letter.

Salutation-the second part of your letter is salutation in which you address the person you are writing the letter to. Please address the message to the person you are sending using his or her formal title unless you are close friends with the individual. If you are friends, it's safe to use their first name.

Paragraph 1 – After salutation starts, paragraph one in which you express your gratitude and thankfulness towards them.

Paragraph 2- Describe that your support was particularly beneficial to you. For example, how their recommendation led to your appointment for the job you've been wanting.

Closure and signature – Using a sort of formal signatures, such as "thankfully" or "regards" is always efficient. Finish with your handwritten signature, accompanied by your typed email. If this is an invitation, enter your typed name, accompanied by your contact details. When you know the person who supported you well, quickly use your first name in your signature.

Conclusion

In an industry where everyone is giving their best to stay on top, small steps like a thank you note can provide that extra edge. Showing your gratitude reflects your courteous and humble attitude and will surely earn you a spot in a lot of good books. If you'd like to stand out and be polished, the most natural thing you can do is probably writing a thank-you note. Never forget to proofread your letter as no one likes a message full of typos and errors.

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