Oh, the bittersweet process of interviewing for a new job. It’s incredibly exciting, but also nerve-wracking as you’re hoping to make a great impression and land the gig!
Sending a thank you card after an interview is a crucial step in the job search process—one that is sure to make you stand out if it’s done correctly. However, many people struggle with what to write in a professional thank you note to make it effective.
It’s important to show appreciation for the time each person has spent with you throughout the hiring process, whether a recruiter, hiring manager, administrative assistant, or other interviewer. It’s not only polite and courteous, but saying thank you has sadly become a forgotten trade nowadays. Recognizing each person who’s helped you could be a significant differentiator between you and the other candidates.
There are some very important things to keep in mind when writing thank you messages after an interview:
- Time is of the essence: always send a thank you email or ecard within 24hrs to everyone you’ve spoken with. The quicker you say thanks, the better. Check out these simple ecards
- Be sure to make each note unique—people tend to share and compare! Your expression of thanks needs to feel candid and true, not like a copy-and-pasted message.
- If you make it to the last round, send a handwritten thank you card to the hiring manager and anyone else involved in the final stages of interviewing. The card should be professional in appearance (for instance, it’s not a good idea to use your stash of cards with cartoon characters on them). Pick a simple design. Here are a few of our favorites.
- Spell the person’s name correctly (triple check it!)
Now comes the tricky part…what to write? Be sure to hit these areas in each note:
- Thank the person for their time and consideration.
- Express your continued interest in the position.
- Mention something you learned about the company during the interview (this shows that you are invested and were paying attention).
Here are a few examples broken down by phases of the interview process, to get your creative juices flowing.
Thank you ecard/email after initial phone interview:
Keep things short and to the point, but express your appreciation for the person’s time and your interest in continuing through the process.
- Thank you so much for taking the time to speak with me today.
- It was nice to learn more about [Company Name] and the [name of the position you interviewed for] role.
- I’m very interested in furthering my career with your company and can assure you that I am [restate any of your skills/qualifications here that were discussed].
- I hope I have the opportunity to contribute to the organization’s success!
- I’m looking forward to the next steps in the interview process; please let me know if there is any further information I can provide on my qualifications.
Handwritten thank you card sent during the latter stages of the interview process, or anytime you’ve met with the hiring manager directly:
This is the time to really show your interest and prove that you are invested in the job.
- Thank you so much for the opportunity to meet and discuss [name of the position you are interviewing for].
- I enjoyed learning more about [Company Name] and was especially impressed to learn ____. (Mention something here that the hiring manager shared with you; for instance “I was especially impressed to learn that the employees on your team have worked for the company for over 20 years. Their tenure speaks volumes and it definitely sounds like an organization that values its employees.”)
- I would like to further express my interest in becoming part of the group and I think I would be a great fit. (Include a sentence here as to why you are a great fit—remind the manager of your skills.)
- Please let me know if there is further information I can provide regarding my qualifications or my enthusiasm for this position.
- Thank you again for your continued consideration.
Now that you have a few ideas regarding what to write in a thank you card after an interview, remember: it’s important to be kind and appreciative toward everyone you encounter! Express thanks throughout each step in the job search process. You simply can’t go wrong.
Jenelle Maddox is a freelance writer living in Northeast Ohio.