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Why You Should Send a Thank You Card after Every Job Interview

5 February 2009 202 Comments

Saying Thank You at the Interview Isn’t Enough

 

Some job seekers think that if they thank the interviewer for his or her time before leaving the interview, they don’t have to send a thank you card. This kind of thinking can and has seen the job go to the candidate that sent the interviewer a thank you card the day after the interview. It’s not simply a matter of being polite.

 

 

While it’s true that thanking the interviewer for his or her time is the main point behind sending thank you cards, it also serves to let the employer know that you’re still interested in the position one or two days later. Of course, you should specifically state in the card that you’re still very interested in the job and hope to hear back from the interviewer at his or her convenience.

 

 

Sending a Thank You Card Can Make the Difference between Getting the Job and Not Getting It

 

 

Think of the situation from the interviewer’s point of view. In most cases, there is only one job, but many qualified applicants. Even after narrowing down the list and weeding out obviously unsuitable candidates the short list may not be that short. How does the interviewer choose the best person for the job if several applicants all seem to have the needed qualifications and a likeable, professional attitude?

 

 

At this point, the interviewer is likely to consider the applicant that seems the most interested and motivated “the one that goes the extra mile.” Sending a thank you card is often the extra mile that gets the job. It makes sense because taking the initiative and being self-motivated are qualities that many employers find desirable in employees.

 

Sending a thank you card after a job interview also shows the ability to follow up and the willingness to communicate. It also acknowledges the tradition of sending thank you cards as business etiquette. If the company you’re interested in working for seems extremely modern in its culture, simply pick a modern looking card. Then say something specific that you think the interviewer will respond to such as mentioning a particularly interesting detail he or she said to you about the job during the interview.

Sending a Thank You Card Gives You a Chance to Voice Your Expectations

 

 

Being sure to follow up the job interview with a thank you card gives you the opportunity to mention your expectations. After thanking the interviewer for his or her time, you can mention that you’re still very interested in the position and hope to hear back from the interviewer at his or her earliest convenience. If you’re sending the card after the first interview, you could express your hopes for a second interview by saying clearly that you hope the interviewer considers you for a second interview.

 

Being able to voice your expectations politely, yet in a compelling way shows excellent business communication skills. The ability to communicate well in all work situations is absolutely essential in today’s workforce in all industries and professions. Be clear and use plain, yet polite language such as “Thanks again for your time and I hope to hear back from you soon.”

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