What to Include in an Interview Follow-Up Letter
When you walk out the door after a job interview, you still have one more chance to make a great impression. Too many job candidates miss the opportunity to gain an advantage by not effectively following up after interviews. Don’t be one of them.
An effective follow-up letter or email message should include more than a perfunctory expression of gratitude for the opportunity to interview. Employers will often gauge your professionalism and motivation to work with them based on the quality of your communication after your meeting. It is important to think strategically about your follow up letter.
Components of an Effective Follow-Up Letter
Here’s what to include in an interview follow-up message to enhance your chances of getting a second interview or a job offer.
1. Convey Your High Level of Interest
The first step in writing an effective follow-up letter is to let the employer know you want the job. Use your email message to establish that the meeting has confirmed your interest in the position.
Be specific and reference some of the information that the interviewer shared about the role which enhanced the appeal of working with the organization.
Example: "Your explanation of the critical role this individual would play with the introduction of your next generation software served to enhance my already high level of interest in the job."
2. Communicate Why the Job is an Excellent Fit
Incorporate a short statement which notes that the job is an excellent fit. Mention some of the key strengths that would enable you to excel in the role. Tailor your list, as much as possible, to the most critical qualifications for the position.
Example: "After meeting with you, it is clear that this role would be an excellent fit given my flair for event planning, ability to coordinate the activity of volunteers and passion for creating publicity content."
3. Add More Information to Support Your Candidacy
Was there something that you wished you had said at the interview but didn’t have the chance to mention? Use this opportunity to furnish any information that you didn’t share during the interview. This statement might include reference to an asset that wasn't probed by the interviewer, or you could provide more information on a question that stumped you.
Example: "I neglected to mention that I have completed an advanced Excel workshop and feel very confident about my ability to generate spreadsheets with complex macros."
Example: "I have given further thought to your question about my emphasis during the first days of my employment if hired. Another focus for me would be an effort to meet with each staff member to hear their appraisal of the strengths and weaknesses of the unit."
4. Provide Information Requested by the Employer
Occasionally, you will have the opportunity to conduct some research and present this information in conjunction with your letter.
Example: If the employer asked you how you would structure an early retirement program in an interview for a Human Resources Manager position you could compose an executive summary highlighting key components of such a program as gleaned from your review of the literature on best practices.
Responding with detailed information, demonstrates how you would handle similar challenges if you were hired and show that you are very motivated to land the job.
5. Ask For the Job
Make a clear statement that you want the job if you have concluded that you would accept a reasonable offer. All being equal, an indication that you would accept the job might give you an edge over other candidates.
Example: “It is clear to me that this job is the right step for me to take in my career at this juncture, and I hope to receive an offer from you in the near future."
6. Say Thank You For the Opportunity
Of course, it’s important to say thank you for the time and consideration. You should express your gratitude for the opportunity to meet with the interviewer, for any accommodations that were made to facilitate the interview, along with a final reiteration of your interest.
Example: "I appreciate the opportunity to learn about this exciting job. In particular, your explanation of the critical role this individual would play with the introduction of your next generation software, served to enhance my already high level of interest in the job."
Don’t Wait to Send Your Message
In order to have a positive impact on the company’s hiring decision, forward your email as soon as possible after your meeting.
Otherwise, it may arrive after evaluations of candidates have already been finalized. Before you click send, review these guidelines for sending professional email messages to make sure yours is perfect.
Review an Example: Email Follow Up Letter