Show interest and appreciation. They continue a dialogue that your competition may not be doing.
- Use the same professional format as the cover letter.
- Should be three or four paragraphs at most, no longer than one page.
- Address the contact by name.
- If you send the letter snail mail, mail it within 24 hours of the interview but it might be a good idea to send the letter via e-mail to show that you are organized and motivated (and it will get there faster!)
- Letter should have introduction, body and conclusion
Following an interview, promptly (within 2 business days) write the interviewer a letter expressing appreciation and thanks for the interview. The purpose of this letter is to:
- Thank the reader for the phone call, interview, advice, etc.
- Show appreciation for the employer's interest in you.
- Reiterate your interest in the position and in the organization.
- Review or remind the employer about your qualifications for the position. If you thought of something you forgot to mention in the interview, mention it in your follow-up / thank-you letter.
- Overcome Obstacles (respond to and overcome concerns from the interview- if an employer expresses concern that you are new to an area and have no contacts, let them know in the letter a couple of contacts that you have in the area.
- Reiterate Your Expertise (if the company communicated specific needs, let hem know how you meet those needs)
- Highlight Your Competencies (if the company communicated ideal qualifications, let them know how you meet those qualifications)
- Review (review important points of the conversation/ meetingto show you were listening and to reiterate skills, also to mention points you may have forgotten to mention in the interview
- Demonstrate that you have good manners and know to write a thank-you letter.
- Follow up with any information the employer may have asked you to provide after the interview.
- Indicate your interest in the company, taking the next step, hearing back from them, etc.
HARD COPY, HANDWRITTEN OR EMAIL?
Thank-you letters can be hard copy typed, handwritten or e-mailed. Hard copy is most formal and is most appropriate after an interview. Handwritten are more personal, and can be appropriate for brief notes to a variety of individuals you may have met during on on-site interview. E-mail is generally only appropriate when that has been your means of contact with the person you want to thank, or if your contact has expressed a preference for e-mail.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU DON’T HEAR FROM THE EMPLOYER
Before your interview ended, your interviewer should have informed you of the organization's follow-up procedures — from whom, by what means, and when you would hear again from the organization. If the interviewer did not tell you, and you did not ask, use your follow-up / thank-you letter to ask.
If more than a week has passed beyond the date when you were told you would hear something from the employer, call or email to politely inquire about the status of the organization's decision-making process. Someone (or something) or an unexpected circumstance may be holding up the process. A polite inquiry shows that you are still interested in the organization and may prompt the employer to get on schedule with a response. In your inquiry, mention the following: name of the person who interviewed you, time and place of the interview, position for which you are applying (if known), and ask the status of your application.