The interview process can be an exciting yet stressful time for candidates. Fortunately, you’re in a position to assuage anxieties. Employers who know how to write a business email appear compassionate and helpful while introducing the company in a way that stands out from competitors. 

This guide will explain how to reply to an email for an interview, whether candidates are looking to come in at a particular time, asking you to set something up, requesting a call, or asking follow-up questions. 

How to respond to an email requesting an interview

Busy candidates who have prior work or family commitments may specify an ideal time for an interview. Whether or not you can accommodate this request will determine how the email unfolds. 

If you can accommodate the request, try this template:

Subject line: [COMPANY] Interview Confirmation

Dear [FIRST NAME],

Thank you for your interest in interviewing for the [ROLE] position at [COMPANY]. I am available on [DATE] at [TIME] and look forward to meeting with you to discuss this position in more detail.

Please let me know if I can provide any additional information prior to our meeting.

Sincerely,

[YOUR NAME & COMPANY SIGNATURE]

 

You may also consider a longer template that provides added details to make the candidate more comfortable:

Subject line: [COMPANY] Interview Details 

Dear [FIRST NAME],

We look forward to meeting you in person at [TIME] on [DATE] to discuss the [ROLE] position at [COMPANY] and want you to feel comfortable and prepared when you arrive. Below, you will find some information about us to help you plan for your interview.

You will be meeting with [INTERVIEWER #1], [INTERVIEWER #1 JOB TITLE], and [INTERVIEWER #2], [INTERVIEWER #2 JOB TITLE]. The interview will last no longer than [LENGTH OF TIME].

During the interview, you will be asked to complete a brief skills assessment and answer a few questions about your recent work history. Please bring [SAMPLES, RESUME, OR OTHER DOCUMENTS], as well as a form of identification for admittance into the building. 

Our office is located at [ADDRESS], near [LANDMARK]. We are close to [PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION OPTIONS] and have ample parking in the lot adjacent to our building.

You will find our office dress code is [DRESS CODE], but we encourage you to wear whatever makes you most comfortable. For your safety and ours, we ask that you please wear a mask, regardless of your vaccination status. 

If you have any questions, feel free to call me at [PHONE NUMBER].

[YOUR NAME & COMPANY SIGNATURE]

 

If you cannot accommodate the request, here is a formal template offering an alternative date and time:

Subject line: Interview Invitation at [COMPANY NAME]

Dear [FIRST NAME]:

Thank you for considering the [ROLE] position at [COMPANY]. The best dates and times for me to participate in an interview are [DATE & TIME OPTIONS]. If this range is not suitable given your schedule, please provide a list of alternate dates and times, and I will do my best to accommodate your request.

I look forward to meeting you to discuss your qualifications for this position in greater depth.

Sincerely,

[YOUR NAME & COMPANY SIGNATURE]

 

Or, if you prefer, you may use this casual template to offer an alternative:  

Subject line: Upcoming Interview at [COMPANY]

Dear [FIRST NAME]:

Thank you for your timely response. [INTERVIEWER], [INTERVIEWER JOB TITLE], was really impressed by your application for the [JOB TITLE] position, and we are excited to invite you to interview at our office.

Due to prior commitments, we are unavailable at [SUGGESTED TIME] on [SUGGESTED DAY, MONTH & DATE]. Can you come in at [NEW TIME] on [NEW DAY, MONTH & DATE]? If not, please provide a few options, and I will do my best to accommodate your schedule.

I look forward to hearing more about you!

Best,

[YOUR NAME & COMPANY SIGNATURE]

 

These templates provide best email practices and guide you on how to reply to an email for an interview. Notice how all examples reinforce the date and time. Plus, be sure to include the interview location at the bottom in your company signature, along with your contact details. Above all, responses should be concise, positive, and helpful.

How to respond to an email for scheduling an interview

Candidates may respond to your interest by open-endedly mentioning they are “available for an interview at your earliest convenience.” This puts the ball in your court for scheduling. In deciding how to reply to an interview email of this nature, you may want to offer several different times to avoid needless back-and-forth. Consider how you want to brand your company, whether formal or casual.  

Here is an example of a formal interview scheduling email:

Subject line: Invitation to Interview at [COMPANY NAME]

Dear [FIRST NAME],

Thank you for your interest in the [JOB TITLE] role at [COMPANY NAME]. 

We would like to invite you to interview with [INTERVIEWER], [INTERVIEWER JOB TITLE], at our office, located at [ADDRESS]. The interview should take no longer than [LENGTH OF TIME].

We are scheduling interviews for:

  • [DAY, DATE, & TIME]
  • [DAY, DATE, & TIME]
  • [DAY, DATE, & TIME]

Please reply directly to this email to let us know your availability.

We look forward to speaking with you. 

Sincerely,

[YOUR NAME & COMPANY SIGNATURE]

 

If you prefer a more casual response, consider the following template: 

Subject line: [COMPANY NAME]: Interview Availability

Hi [FIRST NAME],

Thank you for applying to the [JOB TITLE] position at [COMPANY]. We have reviewed your application materials carefully and are excited to invite you in for an interview!

You will meet with [INTERVIEWER], our [INTERVIEWER JOB TITLE] here at [COMPANY NAME], located at [ADDRESS]. The interview should last no longer than [LENGTH OF TIME].  

Please review the date and time options provided below and let me know which one works best for you:

  • [DAY, DATE, & TIME]
  • [DAY, DATE, & TIME]
  • [DAY, DATE, & TIME]

Thanks again for your interest in joining the [COMPANY] team! Once I receive your response, I will send a confirmation email with additional details. We look forward to exploring what you can add to our team.

Best,

[YOUR NAME & COMPANY SIGNATURE]

 

There is also a possibility a candidate you aren’t considering will express interest in scheduling an interview. In this case, you’ll need to craft a respectful email reply to gently let the candidate down. 

Consider this template:

Dear [FIRST NAME]:

Thank you for expressing interest in the [JOB TITLE] position at [COMPANY]. It was a pleasure to learn more about your skills and qualifications. At this time, however, we have chosen to pursue another candidate for the role. 

We appreciate your time and wish you the best of luck in your career endeavors.

Sincerely,

[YOUR NAME & COMPANY SIGNATURE]

 

It’s never easy letting someone down, but if your email is polite and professional, you’ll keep favorable rapport and potentially the door open to overflow candidates who may be perfectly qualified and exceptional. If you do a lot of hiring, you may consider adding a line to this template that says, “We will be posting [JOB TITLE] positions over the next few weeks. We welcome you to reapply, as we believe you would make a great fit at our organization.”  

How to respond to an email requesting a call to schedule an interview

Often, phone interviews are the next step in the hiring process. If you’re pressed for time, emailing to set up a phone interview date and time can be the ideal solution. 

Here’s how to respond to an email for an interview by phone:

Subject line: [COMPANY NAME]: Phone Interview Availability

Hi [FIRST NAME],

Thank you for applying to the [JOB TITLE] position at [COMPANY]. 

After reviewing your application, we are pleased to offer you a phone interview with our [INTERVIEWER JOB TITLE], [INTERVIEWER]. We will go over what the position entails and ask you a few follow-up questions regarding your experience. 

We have the following interview slots available:

  • [DAY, DATE, & TIME]
  • [DAY, DATE, & TIME]
  • [DAY, DATE, & TIME]

Please reply directly to this email to let us know if you are available at any of the above times. From there, I will coordinate with [INTERVIEWER] and send you an email confirmation. If you have any questions, you may contact me at [PHONE NUMBER]. 

Best,

[YOUR NAME & COMPANY SIGNATURE]

 

Opening with a thank you sets a friendly tone. You’ll want to confirm the company name and the position applied for, as the candidate likely applied to multiple job postings. Also, note that this template offers flexibility in days and times to reduce the potential for scheduling conflicts while narrowing down the options to make your life easier. Be sure to include a phone number where they can reach you. 

How to respond to an email with follow-up questions

If you have several promising candidates and want to narrow down the playing field a bit more, you may send an email containing follow-up questions. Here are some common questions employers use to assess applicants, along with a template for this type of preliminary email for an interview. 

What are your salary requirements or expectations?

There’s no use calling a candidate in for an interview if your offer is well below their expectations. Some candidates will answer with a minimum amount or a range they’ll accept, while others may vaguely mention that they’re “looking for a competitive offer with benefits” and may want to know more about the position before making a decision. 

Can you tell us more about [TOPIC REQUIRING CLARIFICATION]?

You may wish to clarify something in a candidate’s resume to help you make a more informed decision. It could be that you’re wondering why there is a two-year gap in employment, what skills and proficiencies the candidate possesses, why the candidate left the last employer, or what experience they gained in a particular role.

Why do you want the [JOB TITLE] position at [COMPANY]?

Employers may ask fun personality-based questions to get to know a candidate and break the ice prior to the interview. Or, they may probe deeper for insight into why a candidate is interested in the position and/or the company. The well-studied candidate with the most enthusiasm will often shine through. 

Here is a template you can use to ask follow-up questions:

Dear [FIRST NAME]:

Thank you for your interest in the [JOB TITLE] position at [COMPANY]. Before we begin scheduling interviews, we have a couple of questions for you.  

  • [QUESTION #1]
  • [QUESTION #2]
  • [QUESTION #3]

We appreciate this opportunity to get to know you better. Please send your responses by [DAY, DATE & TIME], and I will get back to you as soon as possible to touch base with the next steps.

Sincerely,

[YOUR NAME & COMPANY SIGNATURE]

 

Again, always start with a polite thank you and clearly remind the candidate why you’re reaching out. In this email, you explain the questions as part of the preliminary process before interviews are scheduled and let the candidate know you’ll reach out once you receive the responses.   

Get more tips for interviewing candidates with Twilio SendGrid

So now you know how to reply to an email for an interview. As you can see, email writing is both a science and an art. Gathering tips and templates will ensure your company appears professional at all times while keeping all doors open for acquiring top-notch talent. 

We have many more articles on mastering email etiquette and hiring processes on the Twilio SendGrid website, including this timely blog about Combating Unconscious Bias While Interviewing. Thank you for visiting, and good luck with your prospective hires!



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