Many people who are going through a career change assume that their job is done after the interview. After that final hand shake, it’s not up to them anymore. After that final goodbye, it’s up to the hiring manager to make contact and determine if another interview or an offering is necessary. However, this is actually not the case. In fact, it’s not over after the interview. Not quite yet.

So what’s next? After the interview, you will need to write yet another cover letter. This cover letter is the follow-up/thank you letter that demonstrate to your interviewer that you are really keen for the position, that you are really grateful that they thought of you and that you are committed to the company.

The main purpose of a thank you cover letter is to re-iterate your enthusiasm. A well written cover thank you letter will also demonstrate your politeness and mannerisms. The best time to send a thank you cover letter is less than two days after the interview. Anytime after that and the hiring manager has mostly likely already made up his mind. There are various ways you can deliver your thank you letter. Some people prefer to use email which is fast and easy. However, only use email is this is your main form of communication all the way through- if you applied via email, if they responded via email, then it is appropriate to send a thank you letter via email. If not, however, it’s always nice to send it through snail mail. Many people choose to hand write the thank you letter which makes it a little more personal. This is entirely up to you; however, the more professional approach is to type a brief thank you letter and deliver it through mail.

So what should your cover thank you letter say?

The cover letter should always have the human resource manager, hiring manager or interviewer’s information (name, address, company position) in the top corner followed by Dear Ms. Name. In the first paragraph let the interviewer know that you enjoyed the interview at the place and the date. For example “I enjoyed interviewing with you at Tuff Companies on March 10th.” In the same paragraph make sure you demonstrate your enthusiasm for the position and hope to hear from them soon concerning a decision.

In the next paragraph, briefly re-iterate your skills and experience that make you right for the position. It’s a good idea to begin with “As mentioned in the interview I....” which can help them remember your interview process as well. Four to five sentences is sufficient. You do not need to write your entire resume out.

In the final paragraph, thank them again and give your contact information- phone and email- in case they need any more information. Sign with “sincerely, your name”.

Many companies will ask for references and this is often done at either the interview, or after. If the hiring manager has asked for additional information, such as college transcripts, certificates, references or a criminal record check, include these things with your thank you cover letter.

Author's Bio: 

David Couper is a career coach and writer who for the last twenty years has worked in Europe, Asia, and in the USA with major organizations including the BBC, Fuji Television, Mattel, Sony, and Warner Bros.

He has successfully coached individuals at all levels including CEOs of major companies wanting a new challenge, frustrated souls wanting to make their dream come true, and front-line employees laid off and desperate to get a job.

David has published seven books. His works on interpersonal skills, counseling in the workplace, and management issues (published by Connaught, Gower, HRD Press, Longman, Macmillan/Pearson Publishing, Oxford University Press) have been translated into Swedish, Polish, and Danish, and published in the UK and the USA.

David has a degree in Communication, a postgraduate qualification in education, is certified in a number of training technologies, and has a Masters in Psychology. He is a member of the American Society of Training and Development, Society of Human Resources Professional, Writers Guild and the British Academy of Film and Television.

He has dual US/UK citizenship and speaks French and Japanese.

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