The Interview

Sample Thank You Email After an Interview

By Lydia Coffey
Updated June 16, 2017


So, you’ve nailed the interview:

Your resume was gleaming, you had an intelligent answers for both common interview questions and behavioral questions, and you finished up with some impressive questions of your own. You’re done now, right?

Wrong!

The final step to securing that job is: writing the “thank you” letter or email.

What Is a “Thank You” Email and Why Do You Need One?

This email has the potential to ensure you get the position you deserve. It is, as its title suggests, a note which expresses gratitude for the opportunity the hiring managers have given you to interview.

But that’s not all…

A “thank you” email is also an opportunity to rephrase, highlight, or share new information with your potential employer. Writing one which is effective and delivered within 24 hours will show that you truly want the job, appreciate the time that the company has spent on you, and that you are the only candidate who is the right fit.

When Do You Send the Interview Follow-up Email?

Send your “thank you” letter within 24 hours of being interviewed.

Any later than this and it will be out of context for the hiring managers, and potentially give them the impression that you’re forgetful or inconsiderate.  

Refrain from sending it too early though. Because one of the functions of the email is to be a gentle reminder about you to the hiring manager, that point is ruined if you send it five minutes after meeting her.

If your interview is on a Friday, consider sending your email follow-up early Monday morning so that it doesn’t get lost in other weekend emails.

What Should You Cover in Your “Thank You” Email?

  1. First thing to include: The “thank you.”

    It’s the reason you’re writing the email, and should be at the top. Using the sandwich technique of placing a “thank you” at the beginning and end of your note is an effective strategy, as long as you don’t come off as too overbearing or desperate.

  2. Go over specific qualities you know to be important from the interview.

    For example: “My problem solving skills will be used effectively in this role because…”

  3. Include experiences you’ve had which would add value to the company.

    As an intern or entry-level associate, this is the perfect opportunity to share what makes you a good fit, even if you have less experience than someone else might.

  4. Finish up with your second “thank you” and your outlook for the role and company.

Five Tips on How to Make Your “Thank You” Email Stand Out

Hiring managers read many “thank you” emails over the course of the interviewing process. If yours is one among dozens, then it can be difficult not to get lost in the pile. Here are some tips for making your letter stand out from the crowd:

  1. Keep it short.
  2. Avoid using generic terms or phrases like: “Thank you for this opportunity.”
  3. Be sure your email doesn’t sound like you had one prewritten and just filled in the blanks with names and companies. You customized your resume and cover letter (LINK), so do a little extra work here too and avoid sending a generic form letter.
  4. Recap certain interview experiences that you feel show your compatibility with the role. For example, if you had a solid conversation about a certain topic during the interview, mention it again in your letter: “From our discussion of sustainability, I know your company is as forward thinking as I am.”
  5. If applicable, include links to other work that you have or to your social media profiles, such as LinkedIn. In the interview, you most likely won’t have an opportunity to show tangible examples of your work. Now is your chance to do so! If you’re still in school, then you most likely have an assignment which could be used for this purpose.

Six Mistakes to Avoid on your Thank You Email

  1. This is a time to emphasize the good, not highlight the bad. Don’t try to justify or explain anything that didn’t go as you wanted it to during the interview. If the rest of the interview went well, those other instances won’t matter as much as you think they do.
  2. You have a million great characteristics. But focus on two or three that you find most applicable. Don’t make broad statements that you don’t, or can’t, elaborate on. Avoid this by including examples wherever possible, but be mindful of length.
  3. Be sure to proofread your email thoroughly. It may be the first writing sample you’re supplying to the company, and you don’t want to damage your chances by misspelling words or using poor grammar.
  4. Along those lines, keep the email professional. Don’t use slang words or emoticons of any kind.
  5. Avoid sounding desperate or too aggressive. Don’t say anything such as, “I really need this internship/job.” This is not the time to share your personal hardships. 
  6. Keep it short and simple. The hiring manager is a busy person, and will most likely spend a minute or less on your email. They already know you from the interview. You don’t need to retell your entire life’s story.

thank you emailWhat Does a Sample “Thank You” Email Look Like?

With the above advice in mind, you’ll be sure to nail that post-interview “thank you” email. Let’s finish off with a Thank You Email template. Download the template here.

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Subject Line: Thank You: Project Intern Position Interview

Dear Mr./Ms. [Person’s Last Name],

Thank you for the time you spent interviewing me for the Project Intern position. I truly enjoyed getting acquainted with you and the company.

As we discussed, my experience in the technology field through my school work and personal use aligns with what you are looking for from an intern. While I have not worked specifically in your area of development, my experience in other areas will add value to the projects you have going on that we discussed.  Below I have included a link to a website I helped design which shows these skills.

From our conversation, we both surmised that a willingness to learn is an essential for this role. I hope I was able to show you my own drive for gaining knowledge from our discussion of my experience with extracurricular activities apart from my required coursework. 

I appreciate the opportunity you have given me, and am excited for the possibility of interning with your company. Please feel free to reach out to me at any time if you have further questions.

Thank you,

[Your name]

[Your job title/tagline “Information Systems Specialist”]

[Your phone number]

[Links you would like to provide, prefaced]

My LinkedIn profile: [LinkedIn profile url]

An example of my work: [personal website url]