How To Write an Effective "Thank You for Applying" Letter

Updated February 17, 2023

Image description

An illustration of someone holding their briefcase with what looks like a star in the center of the flexible case.

If you’re hiring for a position in your department, sending a thank you letter for applying is a professional courtesy that reflects positively on your brand, as it shows candidates you want to keep them informed throughout the hiring process. Learning the key components you should include in a thank you letter can help you write an effective message to candidates.

In this article, we discuss why sending a thank you letter for applying is important and provide examples and a template to help you create your own.

Business Letter Format
Image description

The image is titled "Business Letter Format" and shows an example letter with the parts of the letter identified on the left side.

The left side includes:

  1. Date

  2. Name and address

  3. Greeting

  4. Opening paragraph

  5. Closing paragraph

  6. Complimentary close and signature

The letter reads:

February 1, 20XX

Deborah Jones
ABC Company, Inc.
1234 East Main Street
San Diego, CA 92101

Dear Ms. Jones,

I am submitting this request for a leave of absence to tend to important personal matters beginning next month. If possible, I would like to take my leave beginning March 15 and return to the office April 3, 20XX.

I can make myself available intermittently to answer questions via phone or email, and am happy to do whatever necessary to ensure a smooth transition before my leave begins.

Thank you for your consideration.

Johanna Jansen

Why it's important to send a thank you letter to applicants

There are a number of reasons why it's important to send a letter to thank applicants, including:

  • Confirm receipt of application. By sending a thank you letter, you assure candidates you received their application and will be reviewing their qualifications.

  • Streamline communication. Sending a letter promotes effective communication and eliminates the need for candidates to call and inquire about their application. You can most effectively streamline communication by sending this letter via email.

  • Improve company reputation. Replying to applications with a thank you letter shows you treat your candidates with respect, which can improve your company's reputation.

Related: How To Write a Business Thank You Letter

How to write a "thank you for applying" letter

Follow these basic steps to write a thank you letter to applicants:

1. Write a clear subject line

Your email subject line should be clear so the recipient knows what the letter is in regards to before opening it. For example, your subject could be "Thank you for your application" or "Your application for [position]."

Related: 23 Examples of Follow-Up Email Subject Lines

2. Format for readability

Even via email, you can use a clear format that ensures the message is easy to read and looks organized. The letter should be single-spaced and written in a professional, traditional font like Arial, Times New Roman or Helvetica. The font size should be between 10 and 12 points.

Related: How To Format a Proper Business Letter (With Examples)

3. Include key elements

As you write the email, include the following components:

  • Contact information. The letter should include your name, title, company address and contact information.

  • Introduction. A simple introduction like "Dear [name]" is professional and ideally suited for a thank you letter.

  • Acknowledgment of receipt. Your letter should open by acknowledging that you received the candidate's application and that you are considering them along with the other candidates.

  • Statement of appreciation. Open the letter by immediately expressing your appreciation for the candidate's interest in the position and for taking the time to apply.

  • Timeline. To save yourself time in responding to questions from candidates about the timeline later, it's best to include a timeline for the hiring process within your thank you letter. Consider mentioning a timeframe, such as within two weeks, or a specific date.

  • Closing statement. Include a closing statement where you reiterate your gratitude to the candidate for their interest and the effort they put into the application.

  • Complimentary close. End the letter with a complimentary close, such as, "Regards" or "With appreciation." Type your name underneath.

Related: Parts of a Business Letter: Examples of the 7 Components

4. Send the letter

Double-check the email address, and send it to the applicant within 24 hours of the time you receive their application. This can help you begin building a rapport since the applicant is likely to appreciate the prompt response to their application. It also allows you to start documenting the steps of the hiring process for an applicant.

Related: How Long Should You Wait To Hear Back About a Job?

Tips for writing a "thank you for applying" letter

Here are some tips to help as you write your thank you letter:

Use a professional tone

A "thank you for applying" letter is a form of professional communication, so it's important to use clear and direct language that recipients can easily understand. Simple sentences can ensure the message is brief and the recipient can quickly read through it.

Be concise

Keep your letter short and focused on the main purpose of writing the applicant. If you reviewed their application and determined that they are not a good fit for the role, be direct and let them know. If you are still considering their application and others, let them know that as well.


Since this is a professionally written business letter, it's important to take the time to read the letter when you're finished to ensure the message is clear and grammatically correct. This is especially important if you are using a template, as you can confirm you correctly filled in all of the necessary information before sending your email.

Related: Employee Thank You Letters: How To Write Them (With Examples)

Template for a "thank you for applying" letter

Here is a template for a thank you letter to help you write to your own applicants:

[Phone number]


[Recipient name]

Dear [Applicant name],

This letter is to inform you that we received your application for [position]. We appreciate you taking the time to apply.

We are currently in the process of taking applications and anticipate beginning interviews [add a time frame]. If you are selected for an interview, our human resources department will be in contact with you by [date/time frame].

Thank you again for the time you invested in your application.

With appreciation,


Download "Thank You for Applying" Letter Template

Related: Job Offer Letters: What Are They and How to Write Them

Example of a thank you for applying letter

Use this example letter to give you ideas of how to craft your own thank you letter to applicants:

Allison Marks
Director of Marketing
Data Corp.
332 First Street North
St. Petersburg, FL 32351

June 18, 2020

Gabriel Harris
938 Winding Lane
St. Petersburg, FL 32351

Dear Gabriel,

This letter is to inform you that we received your application for the web developer position and appreciate you taking the time to apply for the role, as well as for your interest in Data Corp.

We are still in the process of reviewing applications and anticipate beginning the interview process in approximately two weeks. If you are selected to move forward with the interview process, you will hear from our HR department by Friday, July 3.

Thank you again for your interest in Data Corp.

With appreciation,

Allison Marks

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