Thank You Letters

The primary purposes of thank-you letters are to express your appreciation, reiterate your relevant background, qualifications, and successes, and differentiate you from other job seekers. Most hiring executives appreciate a thank-you correspondence after an interview. And “some employers may expect a job interview thank-you card.” However, it has been said that only 20 percent of all job seekers take the time to write a thank-you note. If so, writing a thank-you note can differentiate you from other job seekers. And not sending a thank-you note may reflect negatively on your candidacy.

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An important secondary purpose is to make sure the hiring executive remembers you. In a survey by The Ladders, a combined 76 percent said a thank-you note was “somewhat important” or “very important” to their hiring decision. That’s three out of every four! Therefore, capitalize on this opportunity to reinforce your skills and accomplishments. Write a thank-you note after every interview. And keep it short. This is a thank-you letter, not an interview transcript.

To maximize the impact of your thank-you letter, use the following approach:

1. Express your appreciation

2. Match

3. Emphasize past achievements

4. Close

Let’s look at each step in more detail:

Express your appreciation

Thank the hiring executive for their time. Then, build rapport, depending upon the circumstances. Your first paragraph could look something like this:

I appreciate you taking time to meet with me regarding your implementation consultant position. I enjoyed learning how you derived the concept behind your state-of-the-art system. As we discussed, my knowledge in this area could assist your department with the challenges it will face in the coming months.

Or, perhaps like this:

Thank you for meeting me on Tuesday regarding the regional sales position. I appreciate your time. And, by the way, good luck to your son during tryouts for the starting quarterback position!

Match

Because you were interviewed, you should know what the hiring executive is looking for in the position. Briefly restate and match your qualifications to the need.

During our plant tour last week, I was impressed with your use of robotics in the manufacturing process. I can honestly say I have never seen such an efficient after-market manufacturing plant! With over fifteen years as an industrial engineer from near identical manufacturing environments I am well-suited for the challenges of this position.

Emphasize past achievements

Express your interest in the position, and link two or three job requirements with your accomplishments. For maximum impact, try to make them relevant to company needs, a position’s special qualifications, or topics mentioned in the interview. Your paragraph could look something like this:

I am interested in joining your company in an engineering operations capacity. As we discussed, my recent accomplishments include:

• Implemented a manufacturing process improvement system resulting in an $800,000 savings.

• Designed and implemented an inventory auditing system that increased turnaround time by 30 percent and reduced spending by 12 percent.

• Developed and implemented a “Visions” business plan that forecast budgets for a variety of business operations including equipment and technology upgrades, new facility construction, and reduced operating expenses.

Close

Here, express your continued interest and outline your plan to contact the hiring executive. Here’s an example of this final paragraph:

What I achieved for Sinc Company, I can do for you. I will follow up with you in ten days, as you requested, to discuss additional steps.

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