In the past, hard copy letters were sent via "snail mail" for a variety of reasons, including inquiring about open positions, setting up informational interviews, accepting job offers, withdrawing an application, accepting job offers and rejecting offers. Some of these official letters have gone the way of the rotary telephone and these days, most of your communication with employers and graduate schools will be through email and telephone. Outlined below are some guidelines for writing professional emails and tips for when hand-written or hard copy letters are appropriate. Refer to Components of a Job Offer regarding accepting and declining job offers.
Thank You Note
This is an important piece of the job search and can play a significant role in the hiring process. The thank you note is critical for effective interview follow-up! After any interview (informational, full-time employment, graduate school, internship or summer job) it is extremely important to send a thank you note to the person(s) with whom you interviewed. If this is not feasible, send a thank you to your interview "host" or to the highest ranking manager you met with and include a request to extend your thanks to the entire group. When used to follow up on employment interviews, thank you notes should be sent within 24 hours.
- Hand-write a note to send in the mail if you know you will not hear back from the employer or graduate school for a week or more. If your hand-writing is not legible, consider typing the note instead.
- Email the thank you if the employer or graduate school plans to contact you in less than a week.
- Thank you notes for informational interviews can be handwritten or emailed.
- Don't forget to send a thank you to your references.
What to include:
- Thank the interviewer for their time and the opportunity to interview with them.
- Express continued or enhanced interest in the position.
- Bring up something you enjoyed talking about or learning during the interview.
- Reiterate your skills or bring up additional information not discussed in the interview.