How To Say Thank You in Your Email

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated 14 October 2022

Published 22 July 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Showing appreciation to others can help you advance your career by establishing professional relationships. It is proper business etiquette to send a thank-you email after a colleague performs an action on your behalf, after a former employer provides you with a reference or when a manager recognises your talent. Learning how to write good thank-you emails can give you an edge in your career because it showcases your high emotional quotient. In this article, we discuss what a thank-you email is, why should you send these emails, and what to include in an appreciation email.

Related: Guide on How To Start an Email (With Tips and Examples)

What is a thank-you email?

A thank-you email is a digital letter to express gratitude for someone's kindness. When a friend, colleague or acquaintance offers you help or performs an action for you, you can write them a thank-you note in return. Not only does it acknowledge the person's kindness, but it's also a nice gesture to send a thank-you email.

How to say thank you in an email

When planning how you want to say thank you in your email, keep these five steps in mind:

1. Think of a subject line

The subject line for your email can be simple and straightforward. This appears in the recipient's inbox, so you want it to be informative but succinct to tell them what the email contains. For example, you can write:

  • Thank you, [recipient's name]

  • Thank you for [action or gesture of kindness]

  • Thank you for your help

  • Thank you for the [job title] interview

2. Write a professional opening statement

You can begin your email like a letter, addressing the recipient by name with a greeting, such as "Dear [recipient's name]. For informal emails to coworkers or friends you may choose a greeting, such as "hello" or "good morning". It's important that you address the recipient properly. For example, if you're writing to thank someone for a job interview, include their proper title. Addressing the recipient by name makes your message more personal.

Related: Salutation Examples for Letters

3. Write a body paragraph showing your appreciation

A thank-you email can be brief and only requires one body paragraph. In this paragraph, express what you're grateful for and why you appreciate the recipient. It's helpful to include details about the instance or event that you are thanking them for, reminding the recipient and providing a context for the email.

Ensure that you are sincere and professional when writing the thank-you email. Here are examples of how you can start saying thank you in the email:

  • "Thanks so much for"

  • "I appreciate that you"

  • "I am grateful"

4. Include your contact information

It's helpful to include contact information when writing to a new acquaintance or a professional you met only once for a job interview or other business meeting. This allows the other person to contact you easily and continue the professional relationship. If you're emailing a colleague who has your contact information already, it's unnecessary to include this information.

5. Close your email

A professional way to end your email is "sincerely", "kind regards" or "wishing you well", followed by your name. Consider setting up a professional email signature to give your email a more polished look. You can do this with most email providers. When you open a message to compose an email, there may be a tab on the top to create a signature.

Related: How to End an Email (With Closing Examples and Tips)

Why do you send a thank-you email?

Sending a thank-you email is polite and tells others you appreciate them. It's a proper business etiquette and shows others you're a true professional. Besides maintaining professional connections within your network, these are some reasons why writing a thank-you email is a great idea:

  • It makes a good impression. Sending a message is personal and shows kindness and gratitude. It's a great opportunity to reiterate a discussion you had, for example, in a job interview.

  • It makes you memorable. Colleagues and professionals may take notice of you and remember your personality and professionalism when you send a thank-you note. While it's a polite gesture, not everyone does this, so writing thank-you letters can make you stand out.

  • It shows your communication skills. Professional correspondence, such as a thank-you email, is a great demonstration of your communication skills, which employers value. Writing a thank-you letter can improve your employment opportunities.

  • It shows your interpersonal skills. Sending an appreciative message shows that you care about another person. Doing this indicates that you have interpersonal skills which are useful in a work environment.

Related: Business Letter Formats: Overview and Examples

When to send a thank-you email

There are several occasions that may require a follow-up thank-you email. For example, it's a good idea to send a thank-you letter after all job interviews to show that you appreciate your interviewers' time and consideration. Here are other situations that require a thank-you letter:

  • You earn a promotion from your employer

  • A coworker does a favour for you

  • A colleague informs you of a job opportunity

  • You receive a gift

What to include in a thank-you email

There are several pieces of information essential to writing a thank-you email. Review this list to help prepare your thank-you letter:

  • Subject line

  • Recipient's name

  • Your reason for writing

  • An expression of gratitude

  • Your contact information

  • Professional closing, such as "sincerely"

  • Your typed signature

Related: 63 Email Sign-Offs To Use for Professional Emails

Template for a formal thank-you email

A formal thank-you email is appropriate when you don't have a personal relationship with the recipient. For example, if you write to a hiring manager, new client or board executive. Use this template to write a thank-you email:

Subject: Thank you, [recipient's name]

Dear [recipient's name],

I am writing to thank you for [the reason for writing the letter]. [Include details about what you appreciate about them or what you're grateful they did. Then explain how they have helped you in your career].

[Include any additional relevant information, such as your contact information.]

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

[Website URL (optional)]

Example of a formal thank-you email

Use this example to help format a formal email. This example is in response to interviewing for a job.

Subject: Thank you, Ms. Baker

Dear Ms. Baker,

I am writing to thank you for taking the time to meet with me for a job interview and further discuss my qualifications. It's wonderful that we were able to talk about how I can add value to your team, and I am grateful to have learned more about your company. Likewise, I would appreciate it if you can consider me for the research assistant position.

You can contact me by phone at +65 8888 8888 if you have additional questions about my application. I look forward to hearing from you.

Sincerely,

Chee Mun

Related: What to Do If You Aren’t Hearing Back From Employers

Template for an informal thank-you email

You can send co-workers and professionals in your network an informal thank-you letter because you have a personal connection to them. However, an informal thank-you, such as this, may not be appropriate for a professional holding a more senior position than you, such as your manager.

Subject: Thank you, [recipient's name]

Hello [recipient's name],

[Friendly greeting]. I wanted to take the time to thank you for [action or favour the recipient has performed on your behalf]. You really helped me to [how they helped you].

Wishing you well,
[Your name]

Related: How to Say 'Thank You for Your Support as Always' (With Examples)

Example of an informal thank-you email

Here's an example of an informal thank-you email to a coworker to illustrate the format:

Subject: Thank you, Kumar

Hello Kumar,

I hope you are enjoying your day. I wanted to take the time to thank you for taking notes for Friday's meeting. You really helped me to stay up-to-date with ongoing projects. Though I could not attend the meeting, your notes made me feel included. I value your friendship and appreciate your commitment to our team's success. Please let me know how I can help you in the future.

Wishing you well,

Benny Heng

Related: How To Stand Out if You Can't Impress In-Person

Thank-you email writing tips

To write an effective thank-you email, follow these tips:

Write a brief letter

It's best to keep your thank-you letter short. The purpose is to show your appreciation, which you can accomplish in a few short sentences. Remember to be sincere and polite even when conducting a brief correspondence.

Related: How To Write a Personal Thank-You Letter

Collect a business card after interviews

It's a good idea to get a business card from the interviewer after a job interview so that you have their name and contact information. This ensures that you address them correctly and spell their name accurately. Asking for a business card can also show your interest in the company, which is helpful to make a good impression during interviews.

Be positive

Be positive in your thank-you email. Positivity and kindness can allow you to express your appreciation most effectively. You can be positive by adding specific details about how this person has helped you. You may mention future goals or offer to return a favour in your email to ensure that you're displaying a friendly attitude.

Include specific details

In some cases, the recipient of your email may not have a good memory of the instance for which you're thanking them. It helps to add a specific detail about what they have done for you to appreciate. This also helps remind them who you are and why you're grateful to them.

Related: Tips for Using Thank You vs. Regards in Emails and Letters

The model shown is for illustration purposes only and may require additional formatting to meet accepted standards.

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