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Why post-interview thank-you notes aren’t an equitable way for managers to judge a candidate

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A post-interview thank-you note shouldn't be the reason a candidate is selected for a job.
A post-interview thank-you observe should not be the explanation a candidate is chosen for a job.

  • Career coaches previously told Insider candidates ought to at all times ship post-interview thank-you notes.
  • But employers should never require them or use them to make hiring selections. 
  • Three HR consultants, managers, and profession coaches stated a thank-you observe should not be a dealbreaker.

In mid-October, Jennifer Howe was scrolling via LinkedIn when she got here throughout a submit about thank-you notes

The LinkedIn consumer, who was a recruiter, had a clear message: If a candidate does not ship them a thank-you observe after an interview, then they won’t move the job seeker’s supplies on to the hiring supervisor for additional analysis, Howe recalled. 

“It made my blood boil a little bit,” Howe, a freelance human-resource guide and recruiter for the healthcare group Sparrow Health System, stated. “For them to say that a person isn’t worthy to be passed on because they didn’t send an email is preposterous.” 

While there’s a debate over the apply of sending thank-you notes after interviews, it is in a candidate’s finest curiosity to ship that follow-up as a result of it exhibits professionalism and curiosity, career coaches previously told Insider. But the expectation that a candidate ought to ship a observe of gratitude does not think about the period of time job seekers put money into the hiring course of or the propensity for the apply to scale back the range of the expertise pool into account, three human-resource consultants, managers, and profession coaches informed Insider. 

Here’s why post-interview thank-you notes aren’t an equitable way for managers to judge a candidate, in accordance to three human-resource consultants, managers, and profession coaches.

It worsens an already exhausting course of

Candidates already spend hours making use of to roles, tweaking their résumés, and tailoring their cowl letters, solely for hiring managers to spend mere seconds reviewing their purposes, Julia Firestone, the founder and CEO of her eponymous career-coaching and consulting agency, stated. The course of is already “exhausting” with out including this unstated rule of requiring a thank-you observe, she added.  

“If they’re a great candidate, then I don’t think sending or not sending a thank-you note should make or break that decision,” Firestone stated. “I think it’s a real problem that anyone would take a candidate out of the running because they don’t send a thank-you note.” 

For Howe, it begs the query: Why do recruiters count on job seekers to thank them for their time when recruiters aren’t anticipated to, and infrequently do not, thank candidates for theirs? 

“These candidates end up being ghosted or don’t even know if the position is filled,” Howe stated. “We can’t expect certain things of candidates that we ourselves are not going to reciprocate.” 

It creates a biased hiring course of 

Disqualifying candidates who do not ship thank-you notes may also create a biased hiring course of, Nora Morikawa, the previous director of linguistics for the recruiting platform Datapeople, stated.

“You can’t expect a person to know what they don’t know, and so you can’t assume everybody was taught this,” Howe stated. “If you’re going to really determine a person’s professionalism by a thank-you note, then you have missed an entire interview.”

There are so many different elements of the expertise search that give perception into a candidate’s capabilities, Howe stated. What’s extra, to take a look at thank-you notes as an “obvious” or “natural” subsequent step in a hiring course of shouldn’t be inclusive, Morikawa added. Using this apply to decide a candidate’s competence typically means equating professionalism with “white or educated,” she added. 

“It’s an arbitrary social convention and, just like any other arbitrary social convention, it’s not intuitive,” Morikawa stated. A candidate might not assume they want to thank an interviewer in writing after already doing so on the finish of their interview, she added.

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