The following post is courtesy of the Recruiting Blogswap:
Thank you letters are another important part of your Marketing Toolkit. The main purpose (besides the obvious thanks) is to ensure that the interviewer knows that, not only are you are a good match for the job, but that you heard everything that was discussed during the interview.
There is an expectation that everyone will send a Thank You letter, and those that don't may not get the opportunity to continue in the interview process. This is your chance to list those characteristics that match the job and company profile.
As with all writing related to your job search process, the Thank You letter should be well written and tailored to the interviewer. While you may have similar text in your Thank You letters, under no circumstances should your letters look similar to other letters for any one interview process (i.e. don't send the same letter to different interviewers at the same company).
There are as many examples of Thank You letters as there are examples of resumes and cover letters. The important thing to remember is that your Thank You letter should be personalized. I've added a page dedicated to the entire (small but growing) series at "Job Search Marketing Toolkit" - take a look.
- Guide Lines for Writing Thank You Letters - This article, from About.com, provides overall guidelines as well as specific links to situation specific formats - campus interviews, general thank you, addressing concerns, etc. Key in this article are each of the paragraphs at the beginning which state, more or less, the real purpose of the letters (similar to what I indicated earlier in this post). And, although I didn't mention it, Proofread as many times as possible concept is listed here as well.
- How to Write a Thank You Letter - Also by About.com, this article lists the "Here's How" as well as additional tips. The time tested standards are here - letters to each interviewer, express your interest in the job and the company, mention specific topics discussed during the interview, etc.
- Free Sample Job Interview and Career Thank-You Letters - Quintcareers.com provides this list of sample thank you letters. The list includes General letters, letters that stress fit, letters that focus on damage control (yes, there are letters for almost every occasion), job fair interviews and more. There is also a link to their FAQ on thank you letters which is certainly worth a read.
- 10 Sample Thank You Letters - Susan Ireland (www.susanireland.com) also offers samples / examples of Thank You letters on her website. Her samples are listed by strategy (interview, offer, rejection, informational and thank you to friends). Click on any of the links and a full sample will be displayed. I do feel obligated to say (as silly as this sounds, it happens all of the time) don't forget to remove any information from your thank you letter that are specific to the sample (like the fictious name of the individual).
- Interview follow-up / thank you letters - One more site with examples, this one from Virginia Tech. The site lists the purpose of the thank you letter, talks about snail mail versus email, what to do if you don't hear from an employer and provides examples as well. Finally, at the bottom of the page is a full listing of additional career links.
Good luck in your search.
Article courtesy of the Recruiting Blogswap, a content exchange service sponsored by CollegeRecruiter.com, a leading site for college students looking for internships and recent graduates searching for entry level jobs and other career opportunities.