So, you landed yourself that interview. You looked your best, researched the company, rehearsed answers to possible questions, and made sure to arrive early. You think the interview went well. Now all that is left to do is sit back and wait for that call…
Wrong! In this day and age, you need to make yourself stand out in a crowd! One of the easiest ways to do that is to remember to send a note of thanks after an interview! Remembering this important step could move your resume to the top of a very large pile!
If you searched for information on successful interview strategies, you will undoubtedly see some reference to the value of a thank you. However, having conducted several interviews myself, I am all too aware that it is still not practiced regularly.
Think about it. As an employer, you have a stack of resumes on your desk of candidates you have interviewed. Maybe that stack is sorted, based upon the success of the interview, by the most qualified applicants who would be the best fit for the job. Then in comes a ‘thank you’ note, letter, or email. You find in your stack the applicants submission, take a second look and attach the note before returning it to the pile. Maybe it will move up just a bit! If nothing else, that applicant’s materials have been looked at one more time!
If you have ever received a thank you note yourself just for taking some time to talk to someone, you know how good it feels! Employers are no different. A thank you note might stroke an ego which is great, but, more importantly; it reminds the employer of who you are and what your qualifications are. It says you are an organized professional who will put in a little extra effort and that you truly do want the job.
Tips for Creating a Great Thank You
1. Don’t wait to send out the thank you letter until you haven’t heard from the employer. Make a habit of going home after an interview and sending it our right away!
2. Address or email the thank you letter directly to the person who interviewed you! If you did not get a business card or contact information during the interview, ask a receptionist for that information before you leave.
3. If more than one person was involved in the interview, send your thank you to each person individually. If you are emailing your thank you, go the extra step and send your email to each party – it adds a personal touch.
4. Make sure the thank you is original and unique to the interview. Do not bother sending a prefabricated thank you anymore than you would send a prefabricated cover letter!
5. Mention a particular point of interest or common ground from the interview itself. This refreshes the interviewer’s memory and tells the interviewer that you were forthright in the interview.
6. You can tailor the kind of note you send based on the company and the image you want the note to project.
A formal business letter, a professionally written (remove any cute quote signature lines) email, or even a hand-written note card would all work depending on the overall message you want to convey!
The thank you note is your opportunity to tell the interviewer a little more about yourself without losing professionalism. It shows common courtesy while also telling the employer, “I am still here and I want that job!” If you do, in fact, want that job, do not overlook this very important step in the process!
Good luck in your job search!