A good information interview email makes all the difference when looking for a job. They help you meet new people, share your professional skills, and uncover opportunities you will never find if you just look around job boards.
But asking someone for An Information Interview can be a challenge. Professionals are busy and their schedules are full. Asking them to make time for you can be daunting.
The good news is that most people are very willing to share their time and knowledge with job seekers. But you have to speak up yourself and ask for an Information Interview.
During the job search, you may find a company or career that interests you. If you would like to find out more about the company or the job, you can ask for an Information Interview.
Briefing sessions can help you decide whether you would like to work in a particular company or in a particular career.
In this article, we explain what an informational interview email is, how to request one, and provide an email template and example.
What is an Information Interview?
An Information Interview, also known as Information conversation, is a meeting at which you discuss a company or a particular career with a current employee.
Questions you have compiled based on previous research can help you learn more about the organization.
An Information Interview is a great way to gather information about specific organizations or company roles when looking for a job or a change of occupation.
In contrast to a formal interview, an informational interview is more informal and does not relate to a specific open role
How to request an Information Interview by email
When requesting an information meeting, there are a few steps to take. With the right approach, this briefing can lead to other networking opportunities or even a job. Here are a few steps to request An Information Interview by email:
- Research the company.
- Create a compelling subject line.
- Be brief.
- State your intention for the meeting.
- Suggest flexible dates and times.
- Prepare questions for the interview.
- Follow up.
1. Research the company
Before sending your email, do some research on the company and make sure you are sending your request to the right person. You can check their website to collect the information that you can use during your interview.
If you’re requesting An Information Interview to learn more about a specific role, make sure you have the correct employee email address.
For informational meetings about the company, you may need to send an email to a general human resources email address.
If you do some research and send the email to the right person, the process can move quickly.
2. Create a compelling subject line
The first thing the recipient sees is the subject line. So, by creating a concise subject, you can grab their attention and increase the likelihood that they will open your email.
Imagine a short subject line that contains only the necessary information, for example, “Martina Rogers – informational interview request”. In a few words, you can state your name and the purpose of the email.
3. Be brief
Your email should be short and straightforward. The email is intended to ask you to meet with the recipient’s current role and learn more about the business.
You should have two to three short paragraphs quickly letting the recipient know the intent of the email so they are more likely to read all of the content.
4. State your intention for the meeting
Since informational interviews can serve multiple purposes, it is helpful to explain why you are asking to meet. Add if you want to know more about the recipient’s position or the company.
You can briefly describe the questions you can ask, such as: on the career path, educational background, or daily tasks.
Describing your intention for the meeting can help prepare for the interview so that both of you can benefit from it.
5. Suggest flexible dates and times
Suggest a few options for when to meet with them. After offering times, you can ask if there are better times for them. Suggesting specific dates and times can make it easier for the recipient to review their schedules and respond appropriately.
6. Prepare questions for the interview
While waiting for an answer, you can prepare specific questions that you want to ask. It can be a good idea to rehearse the questions to make them sound chattier during the briefing.
Prepare questions about the employee’s career path to show them your interest in what they are doing.
If you want to learn more about the company, you can ask questions about culture, management, departments, and the typical expectations that executives have of employees.
7. Follow up
When you receive the briefing, be sure to send a thank-you email. Thank you for taking the time to sit with you and answer your questions.
The point of follow-up is to show your appreciation and to keep in touch with someone who could be relevant to your future career.
Information Interview email template
This informational interview template can serve as a guide for creating your own email:
Subject: [your name] – informational request
Dear [recipient’s name],
[Write how you learned about the company or the recipient]. I find your work incredibly interesting and I would like to learn more about your work.
I would love to hear about [insert useful information].
I know you are probably busy, but would you be available for An Information Interview [suggest at least a date and time]? Let me know if there is any one of these times for you to meet or if there is a better time for you.
I appreciate your time and thank you in advance.
Email example for an Information Interview
Here is an example of how you can break your thoughts down into shorter paragraphs.
* Subject: Karen Learner – Informational Discussion Request *
Dear Ms. Hennepin,
I recently read about the Loren Corporation’s stake in the Dog Days Foundation, a charity that I volunteer with on a regular basis. My name is Karen Learner and I am reaching out to you because I would like to learn more about Loren Corporation.
As a fundraising director, you must have organized many charity events at Loren Corporation. I am currently doing my Masters in Philanthropic Studies and I would like to discuss with you what your position entails.
Would you be available for an information meeting on September 12th at 3pm or 3:30 pm? I would also be happy to meet you for lunch or coffee near your office. Please let me know if these times work or we can find something else.
Most experts are open to helping the younger generation, and the feeling that they can help is a great motivator to get in touch with you.
But it often works best if you don’t just tell them in advance that you want to schedule an informational interview.
- A Simple Email Template for Landing Informational Interviews-macslist
- The Email Template That’ll Get You a Meeting … – The Muse
- How to ask for an informational interview via email – Resume
- How to Create an Informational Interview Email | Indeed.com