Spending less than five minutes could improve your chances of getting a job by 20 percent, according to a recent survey of employers. That small amount of time should be spent on writing a simple thank you note. More than one-in-five (22 percent) hiring managers say they are less likely to hire a candidate if they don't send a thank-you note after an interview.
Of those who would dismiss a candidate for the faux pas, 86 percent say it shows a lack of follow-through and an additional 56 percent say it sends the message that they aren't really serious about the opportunity. This is from a national survey of more than 2,800 U.S. employers, conducted by CareerBuilder.
And that thank you note doesn't necessarily have to be handwritten; the majority (89 percent) of hiring managers say it is OK to send a thank-you note in the form of an e-mail, with half saying it is actually the way they prefer to receive them.
IT hiring managers are the most eager to receive e-mail, rather than written thank you notes. The majority of those in the financial services like hand-written and USPS delivered notes better, but say that e-mail is still acceptable.
"While the job market has begun to move in the right direction, competition continues to remain high for open positions and job seekers need to stay on their toes," said Rosemary Haefner, vice president of human resources for CareerBuilder.
So what should be included in a thank you note? CareerBuilder gives the following suggestions:
Repeat, repeat, repeat. While a lot of what you include in your thank-you note may seem repetitive, restate your enthusiasm about the job and your qualifications for the position. Include any interesting topic that may have come up during the interview.
Cover all your bases. If you interviewed with more than one hiring manager, send a thank-you note to each person.
Edit, edit, edit. Make sure everyone's name, department and title are written correctly. It's a good idea to ask for a card from each person you speak with, so you can make sure you get everything right.
Related Stories from GlassDoor