Thank you notes should be sent within 24 hours of the interview. They can be handwritten, typed, or sent via email. Any of these three methods is generally acceptable, but here are some things to think about:
- Send a handwritten note only if you have very good handwriting.
- Use good quality paper for a typed letter, preferably matching the paper on which your resume was printed, and enclose it in a matching envelope. Also use the same font as your resume.
- Keep in mind that email can be thought of as impersonal. If you know that a hiring decision will be made very quickly, however, this is the best method to use. If you are presently employed, DO NOT send the message from your work email address or during business hours. In addition, because "spam blocker" software may prevent email messages from reaching the person, consider following them up with a note sent through regular mail.
Thank you notes should be no more than three or four paragraphs, and should never be longer than one page in length. Here is a suggested format:
FIRST PARAGRAPH: Mention the position and the date of the interview. Tell the interviewer that you appreciate his or her time, and how much you enjoyed meeting with him or her.
SECOND PARAGRAPH: Express excitement for the company and the job. State your key qualifications, relating them to the goals and needs of the open position as much as possible. Stress a specific point that was particularly well-received by the interviewer. If you forgot to mention something pertinent during the interview, or if you wish that you had conveyed certain information more effectively, address it here.
LAST PARAGRAPH: Thank the interviewer again, and restate your interest in the job. Encourage him or her to contact you with any questions, and provide your home and/or mobile telephone number and personal email address. Tell the interviewer that you plan to follow up by telephone (indicate when), and that you are looking forward to speaking with him or her again.
If you met with multiple interviewers, send a separate thank you note to each one. Each letter should be written with an individual person in mind, including topics you discussed with him or her.
If you have any doubt about the interviewer's correct name and title, call the employer to check. Proper spelling, grammar, and punctuation are also necessary. Proofread the letter several times before sending it, and think about asking a friend or family member to review it as well.
Send a thank you note even if you are no longer interested in the position. In this situation, it does not need to be as detailed as the suggested format. The important thing is that you show professionalism and good manners.
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