Writing a thank you letter after being interviewed for a job is not an optional courtesy and it is not "kissing up." It is a formality that should never be overlooked by any serious job candidate.
Sending a thank you letter is a smart business move as well as just plain nice. It is also a chance to directly reference your conversation with the interviewer, add any new and relevant information about yourself and confirm your continued interest in the position. Candidates who take the time and care to craft a thank you letter after a job interview are more likely to stand out in the mind of the person doing the hiring.
Be sure to reference the job for which you've applied, including the date you were interviewed. Additionally, thank him or her for their time and perhaps state that you enjoyed meeting with him or her.
Try to specifically reference something that came up during the interview, such as the fact that you're intrigued by a particular aspect of the company, expansion plans or other development the interviewer let you in on. Don't hesitate to overtly or subtly remind the interviewer of your key qualifications, but resist the urge to revisit your resume in the context of a thank you letter.
Keep it short. Three or four short paragraphs are usually sufficient; a full page is really pushing it. Close by once more thanking the interviewer for his or her time and perhaps add additional contact information for the interviewer's convenience.
Use high-quality paper just as you would for a resume, and make sure the envelope matches. However, conventional wisdom dictates handwriting the recipient's address for a personal touch. Get someone to proofread your letter before you send it, as you might miss your own errors of spelling, grammar or misplaced humor.
Mail your letter no later than 24 hours after the interview; sooner is better. Typically, job-related thank you notes are typewritten (keyboarded into a word processor), but depending on the circumstances a handwritten note might be more appropriate. Take your cues from the tone of the interview and the culture of the office. This same litmus test may be applied to determine whether it's appropriate to send your thank you letter via email. Some choose to send both an email and a hard copy of the same letter via the postal service. Hand-delivery is not out of the question either.
If you were interviewed by more than one person, write a thank you letter to each one. Not only that, don't use the exact same wording in each letter. Above all, be sure to address the letter to the actual person or persons who interviewed you, not to the company in general.
Job-related thank you letters are not limited to the interviewer. Also take time to personally thank anyone who assisted you in making the connection for the interview, wrote you a reference letter or otherwise paved the way for you to move forward in your career. Thank you letters are also appropriate in other networking situations, such as following an informational interview.
Index of Thank You Letter Examples