I can’t tell you how many times I receive a thank you note from someone I’ve recently interviewed and it’s riddled with errors. Once I see those errors, it’s difficult for me to overcome and typically their candidacy falls to the bottom of the pack, even if they were previously a top candidate. Am I putting too much weight on the thank you note? Or, should I just be happy they actually wrote one verses the candidate who didn’t take the time or extra effort.
In the world of recruiting we talk about behavioral or performance based interviewing. Performance based interviewing is based on the premise that past performance is a predictor of future performance. As such, questions are designed to get at how an applicant has performed in the past, in the hopes that we can predict how they’ll perform if they got the job. In the same vain, if they write a thank you note with grammatical errors and misspellings, isn’t it fair to predict they’ll do the same quality work once hired?
A thank you note to an employer following an interview should be taken as seriously as one’s cover letter and resume. Unfortunately too often thank you notes are written like they were done in a rush upon return from an interview. Candidates need to remember that anything they send to an employer can have a direct impact on their candidacy for a position.
When it comes to writing thank you notes, candidates should keep a few simple things in mind:
Send it within 24 hours following an interview
Use the note as another opportunity to tell the employer about your skills and experience and why you are the right person for the position
Make sure there are no spelling (including the interviewers name) or other grammatical errors.
Do you agree? Is it fair to dismiss a candidate (or at least move them to the bottom of the barrel) as a result of a poorly written thank you letter? What are your thoughts?
This article was written by Kendra Bissonette, Executive Recruiter at Insight Performance