So you've had an amazing interview, and you think the job is yours. Don't start celebrating yet. You haven't really finished your interview until you've written a thank you note to your interviewer. Here are some tips for writing a great thank you letter that moves you one step closer to getting the job you want.
Write the Note Immediately
Your first task after you finish your interview should be to write the thank you letter while details from the interview are fresh in your mind. Don't pre-write the thank you, and don't use a generic template to write it. Write and send the thank you letter on the same day as the interview.
Refer to Specifics From the Interview
Use your thank you letter as a way to refer to something you discussed in the interview. This can be a point you made and want to reiterate, or it can be something personal. For instance, you might want to send along a link to an article you mentioned. Don't recap the entire interview, but choose a key point to remind the interviewer why you're different from all the other candidates.
Say More Than "Thank You"
A generic thank you letter thanks the interviewer for taking the time for the interview. Skip this part, since all it does is point out that the interviewer was doing his job. Instead, make a personal connection, and take one last moment to point out why the interview made it clear that you are indeed the right person for the job.
Send It by Email
Although some extremely traditional companies may expect to receive printed or even handwritten thank you letters, the vast majority of companies find emailed thank you letters perfectly acceptable and even preferable. An emailed thank you is easier for a job interviewer to track down if he wants to reach you, and it opens a channel of communication between you. It also makes it easy for you to get that thank you on the record as quickly as possible.
Don't Go Too Far
Some job applicants go a little overboard in responding to job interviewers, sending gifts or making other inappropriate gestures. Avoid doing anything that a hiring manager might find odd or even creepy. Even if you made a great personal connection during the interview, or even if you have a personal relationship with the interviewer outside the job environment, your thank you note should be completely professional.
Many hiring managers check to see whether they received thank you notes from their top candidates, sometimes using the fact as a key element in their final hiring decisions. Get your thank you letter mailed out immediately after your interview, and use it as a practical tool to help the interviewer make the right decision: namely, the decision to hire you.
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