How To Write a Perfect Thank You Email After An Interview

"Thank you" note

After all that tireless job search preparation and research you did to not only stand out and land the interview, but to also seamlessly nail it, what is the next step?  A thoughtful and timely follow-up message, of course!  We’re here to help you write the perfect thank you letter after an interview.

Have you ever wondered if you should send out a follow-up email thanking those who interviewed you?
If you are like most job candidates, you’re not sure if you should send out a thank you note. You might be wondering if thank you emails have become an ancient and pointless practice. Alternatively, even if you do decide to write one, you might not be sure where to start when it comes to crafting a professional follow-up.
In this article you’ll find:

  • Reasons to write a thank you letter.
  • 6 steps to writing the perfect follow-up letter.
  • Thank you email after an interview samples.

Why Send a Thank You Email After an Interview

Many people seem to overlook job interview thank-you letters or see them as antiquated and outdated. The hiring process is already extremely time-consuming, and it can be hard to see the value in taking additional time to follow-up. However, it is a crucial detail not to be overlooked. While you probably won’t land a job by merely writing a thank you letter, you could be penalized for not sending one.
For some hiring managers, a thank you letter is a barrier of entry. They will not even consider a candidate who hasn’t taken the extra effort to thank them for their time. Jess Liebman, executive managing editor of Insider Inc. said, “I came up with a simple rule: We shouldn’t move a candidate to the next stage in the interview process unless they send a thank you email.” Many hiring professionals follow similar rules. Liebman even advises others to do the same, stating, “You should never make an offer to someone who neglected to send one.”
Additionally, writing thank you letters can make you stand out among other candidates and help you land the job. Consider a scenario where the interviewer is having a hard time deciding between two candidates.  If you send a follow-up note while the other candidate doesn’t, or, if you send a well thought out, personalized letter while the other candidate sends one that is generic or unprofessional, it could be enough to push you ahead of the other candidate.
According to CNN Business, “Yes, you have to send a thank-you note after your interview.” A note signals that the person is eager and wants the job. It shows the interviewer that you are organized, well mannered, and posses fundamental communication skills. “Thank you notes not only show gratitude, but also keep you top of mind and provide another opportunity to re-emphasize your skills and interest.”

6 Steps to Writing a Perfect Post-Interview Thank-You Email

You now know that that sending a thank you email after the interview is a must, but what should that letter entail??
Applicants often struggle with the difficulty of writing a follow-up thank you letter that gives the correct impression. Creating a note that is personalized, genuine, and professional can be daunting since you want your email or letter after the interview to stand out from the crowd. It should highlight your interest in the position and be a final reminder as to why you’d be perfect for the job. Here are our 5 tips for writing the perfect follow-up thank you letter.

Step 1 for writing the perfect post-interview thank you email: Start with a clear subject line

Keep your thank you email subject concise and to the point. Make sure you personalize the subject line with their name or company.

Step 2 for writing the perfect post-interview thank you email: Create a unique and personalized thank you letter for each interviewer

It can be tempting to copy and paste from a generic thank you email template every time you are sending out post-interview letters.  Personalization can go a long way in helping you secure the job, especially if you are sending multiple emails to people within the same company. Add specific details about the conversation and interaction, and don’t make the mistake of sending out the same letter to everyone who interviewed you.

Step 3 for writing the perfect post-interview thank you email: Open the letter with a personal greeting and express your appreciation

The letter should be addressed to the interviewer directly, by their name. Also, since this is a thank you letter, the first sentence should include that sentiment. Be sincere and authentic when expressing gratitude and appreciation. Include a genuine note thanking the hiring manager for their time and that you appreciated the chance to talk and learn more about their company.

Step 4 for writing the perfect post-interview thank you email: Reflect on the interview and restate your interest in the job

Be sure to mention a few key details from the conversation. References will help the interviewer recall and reflect on the discussion you had. Including a reinstatement of your interest will go a long way in showing your enthusiasm and commitment as a candidate.

Step 5 for writing the perfect post-interview thank you email: Close the letter professionally

The entire message needs to be professional along with the sign-off. Thank the interviewer again, and let them know that you’re looking forward to speaking again. Highlight the agreed-upon date of when a decision is to be made and close with a professional signature.

Step 6 for writing the perfect post-interview thank you email: Double-check to make sure you have correct spelling and grammar

You should always proofread any professional email you send out, and especially this one. If need be, you can use proofreading services like Grammarly to help avoid any errors.

Post-Interview Thank-You Email Examples

As mentioned above, you should never send the same generic thank you email after the interview, but using these samples can help highlight what needs to be included.

Subject line thank you email examples:

  • Thank you,(Your Interviewer’s Name)
  • Thank you for your time
  • It was a pleasure learning about (Company’s Name) 

Post-interview thank you email samples:

Hello, [Mr./Ms. Last Name],
Thank you so much for taking the time to meet with me to discuss the position of the [Position Name] yesterday. It was a pleasure to learn more about your business approach and specifically [add a specific scenario].
Our conversation made me even more excited to join [Company Name]. What interested me, in particular, was [something specific you discussed during the interview].
I’m confident that my experience can translate into similar success as your new [the name of the position you’re applying for].
If you need any additional information from me at this point, or have any questions about my experience or accomplishments, please feel free to contact me. I look forward to hearing back from you on [the specific date established during the interview]
Thanks again for your time!
Best Regards,
[Your sign-off]

Thank you email after a second interview sample:

Dear, [Mr./Ms. Last Name],
It was a pleasure to come and chat for the second time; thank you for the opportunity! Now I’m even more certain that I will be able to help deliver great results working as [the name of the position] with [Company Name].
The information you shared about your future projects [include specifics] convinced me that this job is a perfect fit for my professional and personal interest and one where I could make a valuable contribution.
Thank you again for your time. I look forward to hearing from you on [the established date] as discussed.
Best Regards,
[Your sign-off]

The Bottom Line

Now that you’re armed with the knowledge of how to write a thank you email after the interview, you’re probably asking yourself, “When is the right time to follow-up?” The sooner, the better! It’s best to send a letter while you’re still fresh in the interviewer’s mind. Don’t hesitate to contact the interviewer(s) right away. It is important to always send your thank you email within 24 hours of the interview.
Remember: Personalize every after interview email you send. Be sure to reference specific conversations that you had and always compose a separate thank you letter to every person you interviewed with.
Be genuine with your gratitude and continued interest in the job. You want to ensure that your letter reads as a sincere gesture, and not merely a chore that must be done after an interview.
You’re now well on your way to writing the perfect post-interview thank you letter, so get to work, and go get that job!!

For More Employment or Job Search Advice, Visit 4 Corner Resources

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Pete Newsome

About Pete Newsome

Pete Newsome is the President of 4 Corner Resources, the staffing and recruiting firm he founded in 2005. 4 Corner is a member of the American Staffing Association and TechServe Alliance, and the top-rated staffing company in Central Florida. Recent awards and recognition include being named to Forbes’ Best Recruiting Firms in America, The Seminole 100, and The Golden 100. Pete also founded zengig, to offer comprehensive career advice, tools, and resources for students and professionals. He hosts two podcasts, Hire Calling and Finding Career Zen, and is blazing new trails in recruitment marketing with the latest artificial intelligence (AI) technology. Connect with Pete on LinkedIn