Writing a Thank You Letter following an Interview
Traditionally, we associate thank you letters following interviews with our American friends, but it is becoming a more common practice in the UK too. Indeed, there is evidence that it can make a difference to the success of your application. In the US, a survey by an online recruitment agency found that 75% of employers said that this did impact on the final employment decision (as cited on http://www.businessnewsdaily.com/5578-sample-thank-you-letters.html).
So how do you write an effective thank you letter? Here are some key pieces of advice:
- Keep it brief and timely – ideally send it by email within 24 hours of your interview.
- Address it to all of the interviewing panel if appropriate. Use their direct contact details if you have them to avoid being filtered by a generic administrative email address.
- Some great examples can be found online (for example, http://www.businessnewsdaily.com/5578-sample-thank-you-letters.html, http://jobsearch.about.com/od/thankyouletters/a/samplethankyou.htm and http://www.quintcareers.com/sample_thank-you_letters.html) . As a general guide, state what you enjoyed about the interview and/or assessment experience, reiterate your suitability for the position and perhaps how you fit with the ethos and values of the company, state that you would appreciate feedback on the process and provide your contact details again.
- Proof-read it for spelling and grammar – a great interview could be ruined by a poorly written follow-up letter!
- It can be a good opportunity to send documents discussed at the interview i.e. a project summary, a further reference.
- It can also be a great chance to mention those things that you really wanted to mention but didn’t get the time or opportunity to in the interview itself. It can be a chance to say some of the things that only sprung to mind as you traveled home!
- If you were not given a time frame in which to expect a result of your interview or you have queries about a start date, here is where you can chase this.
In essence, you are demonstrating initiative and interest. Both of these things keep you memorable to your employer and it really could make a difference.