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So, you spent the afternoon interviewing for a position as a possible lateral associate position. It's 8 p.m. and you're just settling in for a date with your DVR and the latest episode of your favorite sitcom, when you start to get the nagging sense that you have forgotten something--something related to the utterly exhausting afternoon you spent interviewing. From the recesses of your fatigued brain comes the memory of sending thank you notes after your interviews in law school. But could it still be true? Do you still have to send thank you notes after interviews? After all, you've been practicing for a while now. Is a thank you letter after an interview really necessary? Do you still have to resort to these measures to get the job? You may ask yourself, “Should I write a thank you letter after an interview?” The answer is an unequivocal 'YES!'

The Interview Post-Mortem: Don't Forget Your Thank You Notes!

But let's explore why you should send a thank you note for each interview. Undoubtedly, there are associates who interview and get the job with nary an interview thank you card sent. But ask yourself this, "Is not sending a thank you note after your interview the classy thing to do? Is it a sincere and kind act? And, could sending a thank you note for my interview help my chances in getting this job?"

Will sending thank you notes after your interview help your chances in securing the position? According to CareerBuilder, "Nearly 15% of hiring managers say they would not hire someone who failed to send a thank-you letter after the interview. Thirty-two percent say they would still consider the candidate, but would think less of him or her." Think of interview thank you notes as part of your "campaign" to get the job. A failure to send them could actually hurt your chances!

A thank you note for your interview can set you apart from other candidates. Let's say you're the head of the corporate practice group at a large law firm and you just interviewed two really stellar candidates. Both had simply terrific interviews, but you only have one offer to give. The next day you receive a sincere handwritten job interview thank you note written on beautiful stationery from one of the candidates. This candidate, in her note, in essence has asked for the job and expressed her extreme interest in the position. In this partner's experience, highly interested candidates end up working very hard and doing tremendous work. At this point, the partner begins to lean toward this candidate and gives her the offer.

A thank you note can remind the firm of your candidacy. If you are one of ten candidates who interviews for a position, then it will become difficult for the interviewers to clearly remember you and the answers you gave during the interview. Sending a thank you note is a good opportunity to remind the firm of your candidacy and to make a stronger impression in their minds.