You finished your interview and you are feeling excited because it went well. After a few minutes of elation panic begins to overtake you. What happens if they find someone more suitable? How do you keep them interested in you?
One suggestion is to write a thank-you letter. As someone who does interviewing, I advise against it. In my honest opinion, sending a thank you letter is a waste of your job searching time. Why do I believe this?
To begin with, writing a thank you letter for the interview is cultural. When I was living in the USA it was something I did on occasion and it did not get me the job. Now, I live in the United Kingdom and thank you letter is something that is not done. I have had recruiters advise me, in the United Kingdom, that is not done because the recruiter should be thanking you for choosing to interview with them.
Another reason, with companies having diversity, inclusion, and recruitment policies regarding hiring practices, a thank you letter will have no impact on their decision. This is because, companies need to protect themselves from liability and one way a company will limit its risk, is having an interview process that it is applied consistently to all applicants.
Typically, this will mean having more than one-person interviewing. Then prior to reviewing the applications they interviewers will meet to select the criteria for offering an interview and discuss the interviewing process.
This means, once you walk through the door into the interviewing room, the panel will have the criteria and the method on how they will evaluate your responses. If there is more than one suitable candidate for the role, the panel will look other objective criteria for selecting. Usually the CV, application, experience, and job history will be considered. In all honesty, if you sent a thank you letter before they make their decision it will not sway them one iota towards your application.
So, what can you do to sway the interview panel that you are the best candidate? It starts with your application. First, you will need to ensure your CV matches the job description and person specifications for the advertised role. Next, you need to ensure you cover letter supports your CV and a friendly inviting tone to it.
If you are offered an interview then it is very important to prepare and follow interviewing etiquette. Then, if you are asked if you have any more interviews planned? It is important not to show eagerness since the question is most likely probing your interest in the role. To answer the question, if you have other interviews scheduled then state you have a few more planned. However, if you have nothing scheduled then it is best to say you have been on a few and waiting to hear back. It is important not to give too much information and appear somewhat aloof in your reply. Finally, before leaving the room take the time to thank everyone and let the business contact you about the outcome.
This leads me to the final reason for not sending a thank you letter. It may make you appear over-eager for the role and it can make you look desperate. When interviewing, from my experience, it is better show interest but do not telegraph to the interviewers that ‘this is the job for you.’ Instead, portray this is one of many jobs that interests you. By taking a nonchalant attitude will strengthen your negotiating position with them when it comes to salary.
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