Application Acknowledgment Letters: How to Send Them and Why You Should

If you have the resources to do so, it’s a good idea to send a simple message to every candidate to acknowledge the receipt of his or her resume and application materials. Even if your job listing draws hundreds of responses, make sure each sender is thanked for her interest and assured that her resume has been properly received and filed.

A standard form message sent automatically to every applicant can cost almost nothing and can offer valuable support to your workplace brand and company image. The principles of good customer service apply to potential employees as well as customers, and non-responsive companies tend to come off as disorganized, faceless, cold, or all three. An application acknowledgement letter sends the message that your company is competent, capable, and a positive place to work. It can also keep the attention of talented applicants and help you compete with other firms that may be making a better effort to establish a connection.

So what should your letter say? Don’t get yourself into trouble by making misleading statements, but stay friendly and professional. A standard, impersonal message addressed to “Dear Applicant” will do, but it’s better to address the applicant by name. Try a variation on the following:

Dear (applicant’s name),

Thank you for your interest in (company name). We’ve received your application materials for the position of (position), and will be reviewing them soon. We will begin scheduling interviews by the beginning of March and will be contacting you if your application is selected for consideration.

We have received an overwhelming number of responses to our post and unfortunately, we do not have the resources to reply individually to every applicant. But we thank you sincerely for your interest in the position and will give your materials careful consideration. 

(HR director or hiring manager)

Feel free to provide specific instructions to applicants in your acknowledgement letter. A professional letter can include a statement encouraging candidates to contact or not contact your company by phone or email. Candidates can also be instructed to follow up if they do not receive a response by certain date. Before sending the message, make sure you remove any statements suggesting that a candidate is in a position to receive an offer if this is not the case. For more examples of applicants letters and additional guidance with the hiring process, contact Palmer Group today.