According to one survey, 68% of hiring managers said that post-interview thank you notes impact hiring decisions. That means, if you’re not sending a thank you, you’re jeopardizing your chances of a second interview or a job offer.
Your thank you note needs to be timely – sent within 24-hours to each person that sat in on the interview. Hint: this means you need to get everyone’s contact info before leaving the interview. If you wait too long, it shows the interviewing team you lack follow through. Avoid sending a generic thank you. You want your note to count. That means you don’t want the interviewing team to realize you sent the same note to everyone. Personalize it just a bit.
Now that you understand how important thank-you notes are, here are a few tips on how to present your thank you using email. The post-interview thank you email subject line is your introduction. It needs to draw attention to your message and stand out from the 100s of emails in their inbox.
Your email subject line is the first thing the hiring team will see. In fact, 47% of all emails are opened base on the subject line. That’s almost half. That same study showed that 82% of experts recommend subject lines less than 60 characters likely because 46% of emails are opened using a mobile device. Most experts recommend using sentence case, that is, capitalize the first letter of the first word; however, one email marketing expert interviewed in the study said that using all lower case yields higher open rates – 80% higher! Her logic is that using all lowercase is similar to what you would use when sending an email to a friend. People are more likely to open emails from friends or personal contacts.
Here are five tips for writing great post-interview thank you email subject lines.
Tip 1: Include the date of your interview and position applied for in the subject. This immediately lets the recipient know why you’re sending a note. Using the job title separates the email from others in their inbox. Here are some examples:
- “Thank you for our Feb 14 interview for the manager role”
- “It was great meeting Monday and learning more about the technician role”
Tip 2: Use the interviewer’s name. This is one way to catch their attention and personalize your thank you. Be sure to use the name they use. For example, if the hiring manager is Jonathon but goes by Jon, use Jon. Otherwise, you risk showing that you’re not paying attention.
- “Thank you for meeting with me, Jon”
- “I really enjoyed talking with you, Sue”
Tip 3: Include your name in the thank you subject line. This works for the really busy HR executive. It shows them you are writing a the thank you. The hiring manager doesn’t need to open the email to see who it’s from.
- “Thank you – Jon Smith”
- “Thank you for the interview, Chelsi”
Tip 4: Refer to something from the interview. A great thank you note should always include some detail from the interview. You can start by using the subject line. Whatever reference you make in your subject line should match the detail you intend to mention in your thank you note. Here’s an example.
- Subject line: “Thank you for sharing your company vision with me”
- Email: Your vision to grow your company to XYZ is inspiring. I would welcome the opportunity to be part of that growth by putting my skills to use.
Tip 5: Introduce new information. If you will be giving the interviewer new information in your follow-up thank you note, allude to that in the subject line. This gives the interviewer a head’s up. It also allows you to lead into what you will be presenting in your email. Use this type of subject line as a leader.
- “I wanted to include more about my experience”
- “I’ve been thinking about what we talked about during the interview”
You can always include a compliment or ask a question. However, I don’t believe those are the most effective ways to introduce your thank you email. Often compliments appear too general such as, “Thank you for sharing details of the industry with me.” That is much different than saying, “Thank you for sharing industry growth projections expected over the next five years.” This is an appropriate compliment but much too long for an email subject line.
Over the years, emojis have made their way into typed conversation. I’m not a firm believer in using emojis for two reasons. The first being interpretation. Not everyone interprets emojis the same way. Secondly, emojis are not supported by all operating systems. This means that happy face emoji might show up as a square with an “x” in it.
Use your post-interview thank you note as an opportunity to overcome objections, clarify details in the interview, and reiterate your interest in working for the company. Keep it short but impactful. Sending a thoughtful thank you note will improve your chances of a call back, especially if the company is deciding between you and one other candidate.
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