The Perfect Thank You Letter to Send After an Interview

John Krautzel
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You spend hours preparing for face time with the HR manager and your future supervisor at your dream job. Perhaps you think your hard work is over once you walk out the door after an interview. You may need one final push, in the form of a thank-you letter, to secure the job.

The best time to send a thank-you letter remains within 24 hours following the interview. Send the note through email during business hours on the day of your interview or the day after. Write the letter soon after an interview so the details remain fresh in your mind. Most hiring managers prefer emails to handwritten notes, since the effect is more immediate and the correspondence has less chances of misplacement.

The greeting of your thank-you letter should have a professional tone. Address the interviewer as Mr. or Ms. followed by the person's last name. Open with "Dear" as a generic yet professionally polite greeting.

The first paragraph of a thank-you letter should grab the reader's attention in similar fashion to your cover letter. Compliment the interviewer within the first couple of sentences. Note how the person made you feel during the interview as a memorable trait of the interviewer.

Avoid overly technical lingo, jargon and slang. Even though this is a thank-you letter, you still write it under the pretense of a business setting. The follow-up maintains concise language and does not belabor any points.

Mention specific items brought up during your interview. Reiterate a particular point that resonated with you and with the interviewer. Find one common point of interest discovered during the face time and make it personal to your situation. For example, if the current job duties represent a part of your career goals, explain to the interviewer how your new job helps fulfill one of your professional goals. Show your enthusiasm, but be brief. This correspondence should include no more than 15 sentences among four paragraphs.

Mention one particular detail about your personality that stood out. Perhaps you attended the same university as the interviewer or lived in the same city before moving to your current home. This makes you stand out from other candidates one last time.

Close the letter by repeating your thanks and restating when you should hear about the position. Your interviewer probably told you when a decision should be made. That way, you have no doubt as to when you hear word unless something extraordinary happens to delay the process.

A thank-you letter represents one last personal touch that may help you land you job that you want. If the firm has trouble picking between you and one other candidate, a simple note could sway things in your favor.

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