Thank You For Noticing Me

By CHERY SABOL for the Missoula Job Service

The dinner entrée was delectable and the service was sublime. With dessert still ahead and the check waiting to be paid, it would be unthinkable to dash to the exit doors now, before everything is done. Yet that’s what happens after some job interviews – a premature rush to conclusion that can leave a bad taste in the mouths of both the employer and the applicant.

No matter how technologically advanced we become in matching workers to jobs, a couple of human touches endure.

Thank you

This is provided by the job applicant. Like dessert, it’s a sweet ending to an event. It is the thank-you note that follows an interview and it is as important to a job seeker today as it was to Emily Post a century ago.

A Forbes article on-line this week says a thank-you note can still mean the difference between getting the job and coming in at second place. “I can attest first-hand that failure to follow-up can be the deciding factor in rejecting a candidate who is otherwise a great fit,” one job-search expert told Forbes.

Thank you for noticing me.

A thank-you goes to every person who participated in the interview, with each name spelled exactly right. This is a chance to briefly express your interest in the position and your appreciation for the interviewers’ time.

An e-mailed thank you is just as acceptable as a hand-penned, monogrammed card, according to a survey by The important thing is sending it. More than one in five hiring managers are less likely to hire a candidate who showed poor form by not sending thanks. It shows lack of follow-through and can indicate the job seeker was not serious about the job, according to the hiring managers surveyed. Speaking of poor form…

Check, please

If a job candidate’s post-interview faux pas is failing to send a courteous note, the employer’s counterpart is failing to pick up the check – or providing the finality needed to wrap up the hiring process by letting an applicant know if he or she wasn’t hired.

Too many Missoula-area job seekers report being left in limbo by employers who lack the common courtesy to contact all applicants once a hiring decision has been made. Sometimes this happens to applicants who have been called in for one or even two interviews, only to be left hanging about the outcome.

It is unpleasant work, letting an applicant know that he or she was not chosen for a job, particularly if the hiring decision was a close call among well-qualified people. But it is part of the hiring manager’s job to send that e-mail or letter or make that phone call so job seekers can move on with their searches.

Mediabistro reported in a recent article that 75 percent of job seekers last year reported not hearing back from an employer. That can have unintended consequences for businesses. Job seekers are also consumers and often consumers who applied for a job with a company or organization they especially admire or patronize. When they feel they were treated poorly (and not notifying a job seeker who wants to work for you IS poor treatment), they may withdraw their business and usually encourage their friends and family to do the same. Imagine the damage that could be done by slighting even 20 applicants every time a job opens. A 30-second phone call, a three-paragraph letter or even a mass e-mail to all unsuccessful candidates can prevent that.

It is communication distilled to the basics. “Thank you for your time.” “You did (or did not get the job.” As simple as that is, the whole job-matching process becomes much more satisfying with just those social garnishes.


Looking for a job in Missoula? Be sure to check out our Missoula Job Listings.  Be sure you “LIKE” the Missoula Job Service Facebook Page for daily post on job opening. You’ll also find Missoula-area information on Job Hunting ResourcesJob Hunting Tips, Job Interview Tips, tips for writing Cover Letters and Resumes.


Chery Sabol is an employment consultant at the Missoula Job Service, an organization that offers programs and services to assist employers and job seekers alike. Those looking for employment can view job openings on our job board, website, and social media outlets. Employment consultants provide résumé reviews, conduct practice interviews, and offer skills testing.

The Job Service also provides a self-service area where job seekers have access to phones, a fax machine, a copier, and computers. Our qualified staff also offers business consulting services, including employee recruitment and retention assistance. Additionally, we provide financial support for businesses looking to train both new and current employees.

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