Most job seekers are accustomed to multiple interviews with an employer, who requires two or more sessions before making hiring decisions. Also, most people believe that the seriousness and intensity increases after passing each interview stage -- including critiques of your professionalism when accepting interviews. However, the first and the second interview aren't that much different, except that the hiring employer might actually become more open and forthcoming about the job position. Human resource departments use at least three methods to extend second interview opportunities, and the formality of your response is commonly based on the tone of the person who extends the offer.
Send a reply to the company's email. Use the same format that the hiring employer used in her original email. For example, if she starts off with, "Dear, John" or "Hello, Mr. Doe," then use the same tone. Thank her and express your appreciation for the opportunity for a second interview. Be sure to answer each question, including the date and time for a second interview.
Enclose copies of additional documents, if requested by the company. For example, hiring managers may want to review samples of your written work. Also, note these enclosures in the body of the text. You should try to respond to the email offer within 24 hours.
Proofread your email message and letters for grammar and accuracy. Type your email address in the blind carbon copy (BCC) field so that you can get a confirmation email that you submitted the message correctly.
Answer the incoming telephone call from the employer with a professional, "Hello" or "Hi, this is John, speaking." Wait for the hiring personnel to respond with an in-kind greeting. If small talk about the busy day or weather ensues, naturally and comfortably follow along, but remain professional.
State your thanks and appreciation, after the HR representative states that you are being called back for a second interview. Sound a little bit surprised, especially if you are competing against several other applicants. Don't be presumptuous.
Listen for the caller to state any details about what you need to bring or do to prepare for the second interview. He will then schedule a date and time for the interview. Ask for a moment, if necessary, to check your calendar, and then confirm your availability. Disconnect after the caller releases the line.
Use the standard business letter format to respond to an interview request that was mailed to your address. Most employers use this format, by default, sometimes including official company letterhead, while others are less formal. You, however, should always use business letter format because you don't know who will read your response -- such as the hiring manager or CEO.
Make sure that all text is flushed to the left in your word processing document. The date should be at least four spaces below the letterhead heading. It's position should center the text of your letter on the page. After at least four spaces, type the following company information in a block of text on separate lines: the HR person's name, title, company name and physical address. After another line of space, type the word "RE:" (regarding) and then include a description about why you are mailing this letter: "RE: Second Job Interview Acceptance."
Type a greeting or salutation two spaces below the reference line. For women, find out if they prefer "Ms.", "Miss" or "Mrs." Respond to the questions in the original letter, making sure you answer scheduling queries. Close the letter, type your name and sign above the latter. Include a notation of "Enclosures:" at the bottom of the letter, if you have inserted your enclosures. Do not staple anything to your cover letter.
Address your envelope with the recipient's return mailing address. Be sure to include any departments, if indicated in the original letter.
Ask the post office clerk for delivery confirmation for your business letter.
Do not hit "Reply All" in the email when responding back to one hiring member of the company. It is customary for human resources departments to carbon copy, or "CC," department managers when making next-step or final selection decisions. Your reply to all email recipients might break the chain of command and create confusion.
- Human Resources IQ; Conducting Effective Interviews with Potential Job Candidates; Chris Mattie; March 2010
- BLR: HR Daily Advisor; Interview Etiquette--Shud U B Concerned? R U at Fault?; Steve Bruce; September 2008
- "U.S. News and World Report"; The Job Interview Starts From the First E-mail; Alison Green; May 2008
- Dummies.com; How to Keep Business E-Mails Professional; Barbara Findlay Schenck
- Legal Authority: How to Handle the Interview Scheduling Call
- Dummies.com; How to Format a Business Letter; Sue Fox
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