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After interviews | thank-you letters | follow up

Career Services > Job & internship search guide > Interviewing > After interviews | thank you letters | follow up


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Hard copy, handwritten or e-mail?

What to do if you don't hear from the employer

Sample letters



Following an interview, promptly (within 2 business days) write the interviewer a letter expressing appreciation and thanks for the interview.  The purpose of this letter is to:

Show appreciation for the employer's interest in you.

Reiterate your interest in the position and in the organization.

Review or remind the employer about your qualifications for the position. If you thought of something you forgot to mention in the interview, mention it in your follow-up / thank-you letter.

Demonstrate that you have good manners and know to write a thank-you letter.

Follow up with any information the employer may have asked you to provide after the interview.

See samples below:

Sample 5.4:  Thank-you for initial interview

Sample 5.5:   Thank-you for on-site interview

You can also follow up after speaking with an employer at a career fair. The employer might have given you instructions to do something [research, follow up later, apply on the employer's website, etc.]. A letter/e-mail to follow up later at an appropriate time is a good way to show initiative and continued interest. You can also simply thank the employer for her/his time in speaking with you; perhaps s/he gave you advice you found helpful.


Hard copy, handwritten or e-mail?

Thank-you letters can be hard copy typed, handwritten or e-mailed.

Hard copy not-handwritten are most formal and are appropriate after an interview.

Handwritten are more personal, and can be appropriate for brief notes to a variety of individuals you may have met during an on-site interview.

E-mail is appropriate, particularly as a supplement (i.e. do both e-mail and hard copy) when that has been your means of contact with the person you want to thank, or if your contact has expressed a preference for e-mail, or you know your contact is travelling and will not have access to hard copy mail in a timely fashion.

(Also see guidelines and business etiquette for using e-mail in your job search.)


What to do if you don't hear from the employer

Before your interview ended, your interviewer should have informed you of the organization's follow-up procedures — from whom (same person who interviewed you, someone else), by what means (phone, e-mail, etc.), and when you would hear again from the organization. If the interviewer did not tell you, and you did not ask, use your follow-up / thank-you letter to ask.

If more than a week has passed beyond the date when you were told you would hear something from the employer (and barring some major event in the news like a merger or acquisition or other event that would be taking employees' attention), call or e-mail to politely inquire about the status of the organization's decision-making process. Someone (or something) or an unexpected circumstance may be holding up the process. A polite inquiry shows that you are still interested in the organization and may prompt the employer to get on schedule with a response. In your inquiry, mention the following: name of the person who interviewed you, time and place of the interview, position for which you are applying (if known), and ask the status of your application.


Sample letters

Sample 5.4:  Thank-you for inititial interview

Sample 5.5:   Thank-you for on-site interview


Sample 5.4 - Thank you for initial interview

400C Hunter Ridge
Blacksburg, VA 24060
(540) 555-1111

October 26, 201X

Ms. Glenna Wright
Human Resources Manager
Fashion Department Store
2000 Line Drive
Fairfax, VA 22030

Dear Ms. Wright:

Thank you so much for your time and the privilege of having an interview with you yesterday, October 25, during your recruiting visit to Virginia Tech. The management trainee program you outlined sounds both challenging and rewarding and I look forward to your decision concerning an on-site visit.

As mentioned during the interview, I will be graduating in December with a B.S. in Fashion Merchandising. Through my education and experience I’ve gained many skills, as well as an understanding of retailing concepts and dealing with the general public. I have worked seven years in the retail industry in various positions from sales associate to assistant department manager. I think my education and work experience would complement Fashion’s management trainee program.

I have enclosed a copy of my college transcript and a list of references that you requested.

Thank you again for the opportunity to be considered by Fashion Department Store. The interview served to reinforce my strong interest in becoming a part of your management team. I can be reached at (540) 555-1111 or by e-mail at should you need additional information.


Marianne Boles


Sample 5.5 - Thank you for on-site interview

170 Roanoke Street
Blacksburg, VA 24060
(540) 555-6241

March 3, 201Y

Ms. Patricia Smith
Personnel Manager
Sheldon E-Solutions
1212 Lark Lane
Richmond, VA 23230

Dear Ms. Smith:

Thank you for the opportunity to visit with you and see your facilities last Wednesday. Both the interview and the tour made for an exciting and complete day.

I was so very impressed with your warehousing procedures.  Mr. Allen was so thorough in explaining your process to me, and I will be corresponding directly with him to express my appreciation. Incidentally, the process you use is quite similar to one I have been researching through an independent study this term. Perhaps I can share my final report with you and Mr. Allen.

The expense report you requested is enclosed.

Again, thank you for your hospitality during my time in Richmond and for all your efforts to arrange my visit. Having seen your operation, I am all the more enthused about the career opportunity that Sheldon E-Solutions offers. I look forward to your decision.


Jan Richardson






Job search skills >

Interviewing topics includes

> interview attire

> handshakes

and much more...

Handshakes are a critical job search skill