Interviews take place before you get hired for any position, no matter what position you are applying for. It is because of this that you need to do all that you can in order to stand out from the rest of the candidates for that position. What you will notice right off the bat is whether the interviewing committee liked you or not, but what you won’t know is whether they liked you enough to extend a job offer to you.
When it comes to interviews the one thing most people forget is the thank you letter following it. Whether you get a quick phone interview or a more personal one-on-one interview doesn’t matter, you still should send a thank you letter. Being that most people have never sent a thank you letter I am going to walk you through some of the things you should include in it, when to send it out, and benefit of sending one out following the interview.
Benefit Of A Thank You Interview
- Get Back In Front Of The Interviewer – The first benefit of a thank you letter is that it is sometimes enough to get you back in front of the interviewer. This is what you need and want. The reason why a thank you letter works is because interviewers will see that you are really determined to work with them. Just know that sometimes you won’t get another chance to talk with them for that particular position, but you never know when another position will become available.
- Gives Additional Information About Yourself – Another very important part of the thank you letter is to give additional information about yourself that you may have forgot to mention in the actual interview. The best part about doing this is that you can think of what you want to say and then go from there. Most people never think about putting more information in the letter and that is part of the reason why it doesn’t get the response that they were looking for.
- Acknowledges The Interviewers Time Spent With You – Do you know how much the interviewer has to do during the day? Do you know what the value of that person’s time actually is? I ask these because most interviewers don’t have a lot of time to do anything, yet they spend time with you trying to find the next valuable person for their company. It is because of this that you need to acknowledge their time spent with you. Trust me, the interviewer will appreciate the gesture.
- Ask For A Second Interview – Yes, you need to ask for a second interview. Even if you are the front-runner for this position, you should still ask because it shows that you are serious about this position. What you need to understand is that the best jobs out there will require multiple interviews with many different people. I know that asking for another interview might seem weird, but a “Call to action” here is the perfect way to get them to act now.
- As you can see, it is best to send a thank you letter soon after the interview. Most people don’t do this because they have never heard of anybody doing it, however, it is the people who do send thank you letters that get additional interviews and usually the job. If you want to be one of these people, then it is imperative that you send a thank you letter after your next job interview.
Tips For Writing Thank You Letters
- Write With A Purpose – What is the purpose of the thank you letter? If it is to say thank you then you are right? The only reason you should be writing is to thank the person for spending time with you and giving you a chance to work alongside of them. Don’t make the letter about all the skills that you have, this will come off more pushy than anything else.
- Give More Information Last – The thank you should come first in the letter and any additional information should follow that. The reason you do this is because the whole purpose of the letter is just to say thank you. As long as you follow this very simple rule, you should have no problems getting some kind of response from the letter.
- Gifts Are Not Needed – It is never a good idea to send a gift along with a thank you letter. The reason you don’t want to do this is because some people will construe this as a bribe. You may not think about the gift that way but I can assure you that they will think of it like that. It is because of this that you should just send a thank you letter and forget the gift altogether.
- Give A Cell Number – Do you want to really get their attention? If so, then you need to give your personal cell phone number. I know that most people give this in the beginning, but you need to do it a little different here. You need to give them your cell phone number and ask them to call you back when they receive your letter. By doing this you will get a call back 95% of the time and then you will get the chance to tell them more about how you can benefit their company.
- Keep Letters Short – Letters are meant to be fairly short. Never make them long because most interviewers won’t have the time needed to read all of it. It is also because of this that you should never make it more than 1 page. In 1 page you should have enough space to tell them a little more about you, ask for another interview, and thank them for spending time talking with you. Trust me, short letters are better than long ones.
As you can see, whether you had a phone interview or a face to face interview, the goals of the thank you letter are all the same. You need to get the interviewers attention once again and make sure you stand out from the crowd. Where you will succeed is in this thank you letter, as the interview probably doesn’t stand out from the crowd.
Do yourself a favor next time you have an interview, send a thank you letter after it.