How to Write a Post-Interview Email & Thank You Note

How to Write a Post-Interview Email & Thank You Note

They liked your resume enough to call you in for an interview: Congratulations! We’re sure you nailed it, but your work isn’t quite done yet. Now, it’s time to follow up.

The Interview Follow-up Email

Send follow-up email(s) the same day to your interviewer and anyone else who was involved in the process.  We hope you took everyone’s business card while you were there! Everyone from the secretary who scheduled the interview and brought you a glass of water to prospective co-workers who may have popped in to ask a few questions should get a thank you.

  1. This email should be brief: One sentence thanking so-and-so for taking the time out of his/her day to meet with you. Include a detail or two refreshing his/her memory about the conversation (chances are they are meeting several applicants that day). For example, a shared alma mater or a shared affinity for U2 make great reference points. 
  2. If your interviewer assigned you “homework” (ideas, a writing sample, etc.), indicate in your day-of email that he/she can expect to have it by the deadline provided (then, try to provide it earlier than that date).
  3. Be sure to start your email with a proper greeting (Dear Ms. Evans) and end with a proper closing (All the Best, Jerome). Remember that this is an email to a potential employer, not a friend — proper spelling and grammar are a must. Even if you are sure of its accuracy, have a friend or family member look it over before you hit ‘send.’ A second pair of eyes is always a good thing.
  4. Don’t:
  • Request a confirmation of receipt.
  • Email from jujulovebug@hotmail.com: Create an email address that is simple and professional.
  • Use LOL, OMG or any other “Text Talk”.
  • Send a generic, blanket email if you interviewed with several companies that day. After all, they didn’t interview you at the same time as everyone else.
  • Use a colorful or ‘fun’ font. Black Times New Roman should do just fine.

The Interview Follow-up Thank You Note

You’ve sent your follow-up email(s), now it’s time for the big finish: the Thank You Note. The Thank You Note — which you can write on either personalized stationery or professional-looking boxed stationery — should be sent no more than a few days after the interview, and it is much like writing one for any other occasion. The bones are the same, but there are a few slight differences.

  1. Like your follow-up email, begin your Thank You Note with a proper greeting (Dear Mr. Barnes).
  2. Begin your note with an expression of gratitude. In this case, that would be for taking the time to meet with you. Elaborate with a sentence or two about the company. For example: What inspired you to apply, why you can see yourself working there or a particular fact or figure that impressed you during the interview.
  3. Share details. Elaborate on highlights of the interview. This not only helps the interviewer remember who you are (he/she may have had 10 interviews that day), but also creates a deeper connection between the two of you. If you spent a moment talking about white water rafting or how you both have twin daughters, it’s worth mentioning again.
  4. Finally, it’s time for closure. End with wishes of luck in his/her search as well as your own desired outcome. Now isn’t the time to be cryptic.
  5. End with a professional closing, like ‘Best Regards’ or ‘All the Best’.
  6. Be sure to send an individualized note to every person you interviewed with, as well as anyone who helped schedule it, such as a Human Resources manager or executive assistant.

We’ll leave you with an example, and best wishes for a successful job hunt!

Dear Ms. Peters,

Thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to meet with me. As someone who spent his weekends identifying butterfly species in his backyard, speaking with the director of the Natural History Museum was quite the treat.

I especially enjoyed hearing about the new Brazilian exhibit and your recent trip to Rio de Janeiro. I am now even more excited for my visit there next year. Best of luck with the rest of your search, and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

All the best,

Murphy Charles

9 Comments
  1. My guidance, after years of being in business and also teaching business writing, is NEVER to send a thank you note on thank you stationery. Just use standard 8.5×11 paper and standard business envelope. Nothing cute!

    1. I agree that printed ‘thank you’ stationary is better suited for a social engagement than business correspondence. However, a handwritten note of thanks on simple, heavy card stock is perfectly appropriate and generally much appreciated whether it’s monogrammed/engraved/embossed with the sender’s name/initials or not. And for reference, I’ve been a bank executive with hiring responsibilities for junior to senior staff for over 10 years.

  2. Good, concise information on how to make a good impression post-interview (coming from a recruiter who still believes in the art of the written Thank You note!!) And you can’t go wrong on Crane stationery!

  3. So well said.
    As. A very fond Person of Crane Beautiful Offerings, I only use Personalized Notes to Thank with.

    They have been so helpful in my success professionally.

    Thanks for continuing to help me be expressive beautifully.

  4. Thank you for providing very distinguished cards. I have been helping people who are out of work for over 15 years through my parish, Holy Trinity and the CTM (Career Transition) Ministry, in Lenexa Kansas. I suggest Cranes but have never suggested using the Gold foil envelopes or Gold pre printed thank-you on the front of the card, since this strikes me as more of a wedding/anniversary type of thank you and not corporate. Most of the people who come through CTM are in mid level management and above, however, we help all who come through our doors. Our parish is a dynamic parish that extends a helping hand not just within the parish boundaries but also with our outreach ministries of which CTM is part of this group.

    I go to your Boxed Folded Notes and Flat Cards section and look for sets that have distinguished borders on the card or folded note card and business envelope with a unique liner without the word Thank you pre-printed on the front. I use these and have had much success in being remembered and have secured the new career position. I suggest to our attendees of CTM to have at least 2 – 3 kinds of boxed sets from which to pull a card for each encounter with the interviewer and the type of follow up. I also provide tips on thank you wording to increase the probability that a follow up with the prospective employer is increased as much as possible so the attendee can secure the career position they are seeking.

    Cranes has always had unique cards and it is important to be unique, even in the Thank You area of the interaction between the interviewer and the prospective employee, to set you apart from everyone else in a professional way.

    CTM is hosting a Networking Conference again this year in March and as one of the giveaways, a boxed set of Folded Note Cards is under consideration.

    Thank you for your time and consideration of my input on Thank You cards for business. Wishing Cranes much success in 2018!

    Warmest Regards Always,

    Judy Ambler
    CTM Program Director

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