The Importance of the Thank You Letter
I’ve been asked many, many times, “Do I really need to send a Thank You letter to the employer?”… and the answer is always, “Yes! Yes! Yes!”.
Okay, so I am a bit anal about Thank You’s. I know that. I get pretty irritated if I don’t get one after spending gobs of money for showers, weddings, birthdays, etc. It takes about 1 minute to write a thank you note. It’s a nice way of saying, “Thank you for spending one of your precious days/nights off work with me/us and driving almost 3 hours round trip to get here.– it means a lot”. But do we need to do it after an interview? Does the employer really care? Does it really make a difference?
Studies repeatedly show that candidates who follow up the interview with a thank you always gets chosen before their peers. Sending a customized thank you note gives you an edge. It helps remind the interviewer who you are. Many recruiters of Fortune 500 companies admit that some candidates get lost in the shuffle, only to rediscover them when receiving a thank you note.
A thank you note reiterates your strong points. It reminds them why they should hire YOU. Here are a few tips about writing a thank you note:
1- Proofread. Double check and make sure that not only is your thank you error-free, but that you are sending it to the right employer!
2- Restate Your Strong Points. Hiring managers state that a thank you note is “literally the last chance candidates have to sell themselves to an employer”. Remind them why you are the best candidate.
3- Impress Them With Your Listening Skills. State something in the letter that relates to the conversations you had at the interview. Show them you really were listening to them, not daydreaming about what the benefits and compensations are going to be.
4- Thank Everyone. If 3 people interviewed you, then they each get a thank you. Not only will they be impressed, but they may show it to each other in an attempt to get the others to want to hire you, too. Just remember to customize each letter. A letter that is not well-thought-out (or the same to each) can only hurt you. If you are stumped on what to write, just think about the topics you discussed during the interviews.
It only takes about 2 minutes and a stamp to make a lasting impression.