Q&A: Send Thank You Before Or After 2nd Interview?

I had a great phone interview today. The employer said he will contact me later this week if he wants to set up an in-person interview. Should I send a thank you note now, or wait until after the next round of interviews?

First, Congratulations on making it this far in the hiring process. To increase your chances of staying in the running, send a thank you note ASAP.

At each step of your job search, you want to thank the people who took the time to talk with you or help you. This includes everyone who interviews you (even if you decide you do not want the job), and your networking contacts for helping you connect with employers.

Send a note today thanking the people who interviewed you for their time and for considering you for the job. E-mail the thank you note so the employer gets it as he/she decides who to bring in for second interviews.

It’s common for employers to pick their top candidates only from those who send than you notes. (I know that I’ve done this when hiring – if a candidate does not send a thank you note, they do not get called for a second interview.)

Why are thank you notes good?

  • A thank you note shows that you are still interested in the job.
  • It’s an opportunity for you to restate why you want the job.
  • You can also take the opportunity to re-answer an interview question you wish you had responded to differently.

In the note, be sure to mention at least one specific thing you talked about in the interview. For example: “I’ve been thinking of ideas on how to approach the blah blah project you mentioned …” Don’t give too many details of your ideas, yet. Save those for your next interview.

Keep the thank you note short, no more than four paragraphs. But take the time to show your sincere interest in the job.

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