How to Reply to an Interview Email- Sample Examples
There is nothing like receiving a positive response from a potential employer inviting you to come in for an interview. This means that you have progressed to the next stage, and it is time to move the discussion along.
While you might be thrilled to type a quick message and hit ‘Reply,’ it would serve you well to hold back first and think through your response cautiously.
After all, even your email reply contributes to the overall impression your potential employer has of you, and you should treat it as part of the interview.
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How to Reply to an Interview Email
When you get that email asking you for an interview, you might want to just reply ‘yes’ as soon as possible.
However, you should first take a minute to think about how to actually reply to that email because the job is not yours yet. Instead, you should think about that email as part of the interview, which means that you need to really craft a good reply.
While you do not need to respond right away, you do need to respond promptly. This means within 24 hours, or preferably within the same day.
Responding quickly will show your potential employer that you are enthusiastic about the job and that you respect their time. Ensure that you do not miss the email accidentally. Set up notifications to ensure you see your emails, check those emails regularly, and remember to check your spam folder, too, just in case.
If you respond a week later, you might have already missed the opportunity to respond at all.
Check the Job
You have a whole 24 hours, so before you respond haphazardly to that email, just remember to check the job advertisement. Especially if you had been applying for a lot of interviews at once, you should make sure the interview request is for a job you really want to work in.
If you do not actually want the job, there is no point in going through with an entire interview.
So, what should you say in response? Start by thinking about general guidelines here. That means being polite throughout the email by first thanking the employer for the opportunity. From here, just get to the point. You do not need to write another cover letter or go through all your experience.
It is essential to be professional too. Do not use abbreviations, and be careful with exclamation points, making sure to lean towards being more formal. Make sure you proofread everything to make sure that there are no mistakes you have missed.
Also, take note that if there were multiple people on that email chain, make sure to “reply all” too, just to be sure everyone knows what your response is.
What to Say
More specifically, start with a simple ‘thank you.’ If you can, agree with their suggested day and time, but there is nothing wrong with politely suggesting another option, too, if you are still working at another job or if your schedule is otherwise too busy.
Make sure to reinforce the date of the interview, along with the location, time, and any other details. Ask if there is anything you need to prepare, and if they have asked for any documentation, send that over too.
Here is an example:
This email reply is simple, positive, and cuts straight to the point. Confirming the location and date of the interview also ensures that there is no misunderstanding or miscommunication regarding the interview details.
Confirm the Details
You might get an email telling you the details and asking you to confirm the time and date of your interview.
However, you might also get another notification asking you to call to set up a time to call. If that is the case, you do still need to email to confirm your details.
Let them know that you will indeed be calling, and give a time for when you plan on calling—and follow through on that time.
No matter whether you have a potential in-person, virtual, or phone interview coming up, make sure you have confirmed your details. Check people’s names, check the spelling, and make sure you got the details right.
If the employer asks you to answer some questions or sends some questions your way, you need to answer them just like you would answer questions in an interview. Think of this as part of the formal interview process and answer with as much professionalism as possible.
Questions About the Company
If the employer asks you any questions about the company, be sure to give specific and well-elaborated responses. Do your research and find out more about the company through their blogs or social media accounts.
If you are asked about your salary expectations, there are a few ways you can tackle this. First, it is crucial to understand that employers just want to ensure that your salary expectations are in line with what they are able to offer.
You could answer in this way: “I would like a competitive offer that comes with benefits but I would like to learn more about the job scope first.”
Another way to respond is to give a range instead of a specific figure. This ensures that you do not accidentally close any doors by replying with a specific figure that is not in line with what the employer wants to give.
Questions About Your Career Path
Sometimes, the employer might ask you some questions about your career path. Before you type your response, be sure to reference what you have already written in your CV. Make your zeal for the role obvious and show how you are a good candidate and match for the role.
Questions About Skills You Do Not Have
When asked about specific skills that you might not have, it is always beneficial to be honest. Ultimately, it will be clear if you do not possess these skills. However, it does not mean that you have to give up or that you definitely will not be chosen for the role.
Instead, make it clear that you do have transferable knowledge and skills and that you are a fast learner who can quickly adapt. Highlight that you have a positive attitude to learn.
Employers want to hire candidates with excellent attitudes, so do not be discouraged if you do not possess the specific skills that they are looking for.
Finish the Email
You need to end your email, and to do that, make sure that you include your contact information. Let them know how to reach you, whether by phone or email, and if you include that email, make sure it is not the one for your current employer.
After this, take a second to thank your potential employer and tell them how excited you are to meet with them.
Declining the Interview
If you have decided that you do not want to go ahead with the interview, you will still need to craft a professional response.
After all, you do not want to shut any doors in case you still want to work with the company in the future. Any contacts you make can prove to be useful in your career path down the road, so you still want to respond politely.
Here is an example of how you can decline the interview politely:
If the job isn’t right for you, you can still take the meeting. You’ll be top of mind for other, more suitable positions after the interviewer gets to know you. If you still want to decline the interview, here’s a sample response.
Responding to an interview request in the right manner is crucial as you want to keep presenting a positive image. When you get an interview request, it means your application has progressed to the next stage, so be sure to set the right tone to keep your chances of getting hired high.
Sarah is an accomplished educator, researcher and author in the field of testing and assessment. She has worked with various educational institutions and organisations to develop innovative evaluation methods and enhance student learning. Sarah has published numerous articles and books on assessment and learning. Her passion for promoting equity and fairness in the education system fuels her commitment to sharing insights and best practices with educators and policymakers around the world.