Sending a handwritten thank-you note after an interview can give a potential employee an edge over other candidates, a new survey shows.

In a survey of 150 senior executives, 88 percent said a post-interview thank-you note can be influential when evaluating candidates, according to Accountemps, a Menlo Park, Calif.-based staffing services firm.

Despite the potential benefits, respondents said they had received thank-you notes from only about half of all candidates they've ever interviewed. Though most respondents said they preferred handwritten thank-you notes, many said a simple e-mail message was just as good.

According to Accountemps chairman, Max Messmer, jobseekers should send an email directly after their interview and then follow-up with a formal correspondence.

"E-mail insures immediacy, but hiring managers still favor the personal touch of a handwritten note," Messmer said in a statement.

Published on: Aug 10, 2007