Tips to Writing a Thank You Email After an Interview (With Examples)
By Indeed Editorial Team
Updated February 22, 2021 | Published February 4, 2020
Updated February 22, 2021
Published February 4, 2020
When your diligent work perfecting your resume leads to an interview, there is a period where you wait for a response from the company. Often, a good next step is to send a follow-up email to thank the person for taking the time to interview you. This shows a hiring manager you are serious about the job and know their time is valuable. In this article, we discuss some good ways to approach the thank you email after an interview with some examples you can model your own email after.
What is a thank you email?
A thank you email is a message you send to an interviewer, hiring manager or prospective employer to thank them for interviewing you as a potential candidate. After a job interview, you can send an email to the person who interviewed you to thank them for their time, point out some talking points from the conversation you found insightful, and emphasize how you are the right candidate for the job based on those specific examples. An effective thank-you email shows respect and gratitude to the recipient and refers back to the interview discussion in a meaningful way.
Related: Guide to Thank You Notes
The right and wrong approach to a thank you email
To help you stand out from other candidates, your email should avoid generic platitudes and help the recipient immediately recall your particular interview and the things that make you worthy of a second look. Here are two example emails comparing one that is somewhat effective and another that is more effective:
Dear human resources,
Thank you for allowing me to come and interview today. It was great to be able to share my work experience and learn more about your company.
Like I said in our interview, I truly believe I am a good fit for the job and hope to hear from you soon.
Subject: Thank you for the interview yesterday
Dear Ms. Miller,
Thank you for taking the time to interview me yesterday for the position of senior project manager. It was a pleasure to meet you in person and gain more insight into how Billings Marketing operates day-to-day.
I especially appreciated the panel taking the time to show me the time-tracking software the company uses for project management. It is very similar to one I have been using for the past five years at my current job, and I feel confident I can quickly adapt to a new system and demonstrate the skills that helped me advance to a senior position after only a year.
If there is anything additional you need from me, please feel free to reach me via email, phone or text. As we discussed, I look forward to hearing from you in the next couple of weeks.
Thank you again for your time and thorough discussion.
How to write a thank you email after an interview
Referring to the examples above, here are some important elements to include in a thank you email:
Write a brief subject line.
Include a salutation.
Start the email with a thank you.
Use specific examples.
Close with a call to action.
1. Write a subject line
Consider the hundreds of emails that the recipient likely receives every day, and try to think of a subject line that invites them to stop and read your email immediately. Saying "thank you for the interview" is sufficient, but if you can include something specific, it can help the person make connections in their mind. In the example above, "yesterday" helps tie you to the date of your interview. Keep your subject line to around 50 characters for easy readability on all platforms.
2. Include a salutation
Address the person in the way they asked you to. If they suggested in the interview that you call them by their first name, you can start your email with that, such as "Dear Susan." If in doubt, use "Mr." or "Ms." followed by their last name. Avoid using an impersonal "Dear Sir" or "Dear Madam" or a generic title like "Dear human resources." If you interviewed with more than one person, it's typically better to send individual emails rather than sending a group email.
3. Start with thank you
Begin with sincere words of gratitude that focus on the recipient. Simple and straightforward language is usually more effective than overly formal phrases. "Thank you for taking the time to meet with me" is more clear and concise than "I am writing to express my gratitude for the time spent in our interview." Acknowledge the person's time, and describe anything specific that made you feel comfortable or helped you learn or understand something about the company or the job.
4. Use specific examples
Mention the job title by name, and talk about one or two specific things you found helpful or interesting in the interview. Consider choosing things you can tie into your previous work experience or that introduced a skill you have. In the effective example above, Grace thanked her interviewers for explaining the time-tracking software and then explained how she believes her experience would match their process well.
While your focus should convey an overall feeling of gratitude, you can continue to gently sell yourself as a candidate through the topics you discussed in the interview.
5. Close with a call to action
You can thank the person again, and then reaffirm any follow-up dates that you discussed in the interview. Offer your availability for any further information they might want from you, and use a professional closing phrase like "Sincerely," "Best," "Best wishes" or "Kind regards" with your full name and contact information so they can reach you easily.
Tips for writing a thank you email
In addition to the necessary elements, here are some other guidelines to keep in mind to write an effective thank you email after an interview:
Send your email within 24 hours of the interview. This shows you are courteous and responsible and ensures that your resume and interview are present in the hiring manager's mind.
Wait to fill in the "to" field until you have drafted and proofread the email. That helps you avoid accidentally pushing "send" before you intend to.
Use proper grammar, and proofread your email carefully. This note will reflect your professionalism and show the company how well you write and express yourself. While you can use software spellcheckers, be sure to read it over yourself to catch any areas of improvement in flow or tone.
After sending the initial thank you email, wait an appropriate length of time to contact the person again. If they said they would get in touch in a week, wait at least that long to follow up. If they didn't mention a time frame, a week is a good length to wait that shows interest but avoids being a nuisance.
Thank you note examples
The following are some examples of thank you emails for specific situations. Use these as a guide and include details most relevant to your job search.
Short thank you note after a first interview
Subject: Thanks for the interview
Thank you for the interview on Tuesday afternoon for the senior sales representative position. I enjoyed meeting you in person, and I appreciate you sharing details about the company's exciting goals for the upcoming year. I think my sales experience in the software industry gives me the tools to contribute effectively to the mission we discussed, and I look forward to hearing from you next week.
Long thank you note after a first interview
Subject: Thank you for the interview
Dear Ms. Franklin,
Thank you for meeting with me yesterday to interview for the executive assistant position for Mr. Thomas. I appreciate the time you took showing me around the office and explaining in detail the responsibilities of the position.
After I left, I thought about our brief discussion on time management concerns. You mentioned that Mr. Thomas was looking for someone who excelled in this area. I went back over my notes from the Dale Carnegie Time Management course I completed two years ago, and I'm confident my training and experience has prepared me for this particular job duty.
I am available anytime if you need further information from me. Thank you again for your time and helpful information.
After a second interview
Subject: Thanks for the second interview
Thank you for interviewing me for the human resources position. I enjoyed meeting with Nancy last week, but you provided some really helpful additional details about the day-to-day responsibilities of the position.
I especially appreciate how you took me to meet others in the department. I felt a great sense of unity and focus that speaks of how you manage. I left feeling confident I could work well in that environment and that my skills are a good fit.
I am excited about our future discussions. Please do not hesitate to contact me for anything you need.
After a final interview
Subject: I enjoyed meeting with you again
Thank you for your time yesterday. I have really enjoyed all the interactions I have had at Harris Manufacturing, and you have been a tremendous help in explaining the job fully. The tour of the plant was especially interesting. The workers we spoke to had nothing but good things to say, which speaks highly of your organization.
After I left, I reflected on the steps in my career that brought me to this point, and I feel confident they have been good preparation for this management position. In particular, I think my time as a production assistant gives me a unique perspective on how manufacturing work functions day-to-day. I work well when things are running smoothly and I can handle a crisis calmly and with a focus on solutions.
I have been continuously impressed with each visit to the plant, and I hope I have shown myself to be a good fit for this position.
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