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Fighting for that job you want doesn't end when you leave the interview. Send a thank-you note afterward to make a lasting impression on your prospective employer. In an interview with Business News Daily, human resources consultant Lori Kleiman says only 20 percent of job applicants actually do this, and it's that 20 percent that gets attention. Not all thank-you notes are created equal, though. You need to follow a few guidelines to make yours successful.
How to Send
A 2012 business survey conducted by Accountemps revealed that 87 percent of employers felt an emailed thank-you note was as appropriate as a handwritten one. Be sure to get the business cards of all the people involved in your interview so you can follow up with each one of them. But beware of being too relaxed; your email should still maintain the structure of a formal business letter. Begin with Dear Mr. or Ms. So-and-So and end with Sincerely. That said, if the business you're applying with has a conservative vibe, send a written note instead, or even both. Never send a thank-you text, no matter how casual the work atmosphere is.
Don't Be Generic
While the thank-you note's big job is to convey your appreciation for being considered for a position, it also provides you with an opportunity to prove you were paying attention during the interview. Forbes recommends mentioning something specific, such as a subject you and the interviewer connected on or an aspect of the job you feel drawn to. Never write a generic thank-you note and give it to the interviewer once the interview is over.
Reiterate Your Qualifications
The thank-you note also gives you a chance to re-emphasize why you think you're right for the job. Mention how your skill set and education make you a great fit for the position. You might touch on what you'd do for the company if you're hired, if appropriate. Include anything you wish you'd said during the interview, says Brittney Helmrich in a September 2014 Business News Daily article, and clarify anything you felt you could have said better. Add your business card or contact information.
Don't get too wordy in your note. Keep it to two or three paragraphs, suggests Lisa Quast in an August 2013 article on the Forbes website. Avoid sounding pushy or pleading. Maintain a professional yet friendly tone. In fact, even if you've been turned down for the job, a thank-you is still entirely appropriate. Simply say it's unfortunate you could fill the position but that you enjoyed the interview and appreciate being considered. This note could go in your personnel file, and if the new recruit doesn't work out you may get a phone call. And before you seal that envelope or press send, double-check and triple-check your spelling and grammar. A poorly written thank-you note will get you remembered, but for the wrong reasons.
Brooke Julia has been a writer since 2009. Her work has been featured in regional magazines, including "She" and "Hagerstown Magazine," as well as national magazines, including "Pregnancy & Newborn" and "Fit Pregnancy."
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