Paying attention to post-interview etiquette.

You might think that now that you’ve completed your interview, you can sit back and relax. Actually, it’s time to get back to work! You should be writing thank-you letters or e-mails to all of the people you met with during your interview and to all of the people who provided you with leads or information on the position, business, and industry. This is why it’s so important to keep information on everyone you met with and everyone who has helped you along in the process.

Sending thank-you letters or e-mails to interviewers is a social expectation when interviewing for a job. It’s also another way you can stand apart from the rest of the candidates. Thank-you notes give you the chance to demonstrate proper etiquette, writing skills, and follow-through, and also show that you are aware of, and grateful for, the time and energy people have spent helping you and considering you for a position.

Write and send these thank you letters or e-mails promptly (within 48 hours of the interview), and compose them in a professional format. The recipients are not your friends and one of them may hold the key to you getting the job, so be formal, polite, and respectful. Send a message to each person you interacted with during your interview, including assistants and secretaries. You never know who has influence in the hiring process.

Here are some tips for writing your thank you letters or e-mails:

  • Write your thank-you message in a word processing program so you can use spelling and grammar checks.
  • Letters should be composed in formal business letter format (you may want to review the 3.7 lesson on cover letter writing).
  • For e-mails, the letters should be both attached as a document and pasted into the body of the e-mail.
  • Here is an outline for guidance:
    • For the structure of the letter, review lesson 3.7 on cover letters.
    • Opening paragraph: Thank them for their time and express your appreciation for the interview.
    • Second paragraph: should be a final sell of why you would be a great fit for the position. Keep this brief and respectful.
    • Closing paragraph: Thank them again and say that you look forward to hearing from them in the near future.

    Remember to thank all of the people who provided assistance to you in this process. This can be tedious, but this effort will pay off as you demonstrate professionalism and respect. Get started on those thank you letters or e-mails!

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