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Thank You Email After an Interview
By Alison Doyle, Career Expert


A lot has changed in the job interview process over the past few years. It's not unusual to be asked to participate in a video interview, to provide links to your social media pages in order to demonstrate your personal brand or to do some sample work on spec to prove that you're qualified for the job. One thing that hasn't changed, however, is the need to send a thank-you note to your interviewers to express your appreciation for the opportunity of meeting with them.

The good news is that you can generally send your note via email–a paper letter isn’t usually necessary.

The Benefits of Sending a Thank-You Email

An email thank-you message has a couple of important advantages over the old-fashioned, paper-and-ink variety of a thank-you letter. For example, with an email, you can do more than remind your prospective employer of your qualities and skills–you can actually show them off by including a link to your online portfolio, LinkedIn account, or professional social networking profiles.

Another benefit of a thank-you email is that you can get your thank-you message out immediately, rather than having to wait for the postal service to deliver a letter. In fact, you can send and write your thank-you email on the same day.

This is crucial if you’ve just interviewed for a job in which the hiring manager will be making a quick decision. You want to send the letter when the interviewer’s impression of you is still sharp in his or her mind. You also want the interviewer to read the letter before making a hiring decision. This means that you should send the email message or letter within 24 hours of your interview.

Send One Email to Each Interviewer

What if you’re interviewed by several people? First of all, ask for a business card at the conclusion of the interview–that way you'll have the contact information for each thank-you email. Then, send email messages to each person you have interviewed with. Be sure to also modify your message so each interviewer gets a unique thank-you message.

What to Include in Your Email Message

In addition to thanking the person you interviewed with, your thank-you note should reinforce the fact that you want the job, so view your thank-you as a follow-up "sales" letter. In other words, restate why you want the job, what your qualifications are, how you might make significant contributions, and so on.

Your message is also the perfect opportunity to discuss anything of importance that your interviewer neglected to ask. For example, if you didn’t have a chance to explain why you thought that you would fit in well with the company culture, you might briefly state this in the email.

Finally, use your letter to address any issues and concerns that came up during the interview, including topics you neglected to answer as thoroughly as you might have wished. For instance, if you feel that you botched an interview question, you could explain your answer in more detail here.

Keep in mind, though, that the thank-you note should be brief and to-the-point. A couple of brief paragraphs are sufficient. Here are tips for writing a strong thank-you email.

Use a Professional Subject Line

In the subject line, provide just enough information about why you are sending the email. Include the phrase “thank you” and either your name or the title of the job you interviewed for (or both). Some examples of subject lines include:

  • Thank You–Firstname Lastname
  • Thank You–Job Title
  • Thank You–Firstname Lastname, Job Title
  • Thank You–Job Title, Firstname Lastname
  • Job Title, Firstname Lastname–Thank You

Keep It Brief

Keep your message concise. The interviewer will not want to read a very long thank-you email. Focus on saying “thank you” and briefly reiterating your interest in the position.

Edit, Edit, Edit

Remember to proofread. Proofreading is just as important in email as it is in other forms of correspondence. Be sure to check spelling and grammar. Also, keep a copy in your "Out" mailbox or “cc:” yourself so you have a copy of each message you've sent.

Find job interview Thank-You Letter Samples here.