You did your research, tailored your resume, and applied for a great position. You may have even scored an interview, came prepared, and impressed the interviewer. Now it’s just time to play the waiting game, right? Wrong!
If you’re sitting around waiting for your dream job to find you, you’re ignoring a crucial part of your job search: the follow-up. Job seekers should follow up after applying for a job and after interviewing for a position. Following up is essential in your job search because it reinforces your interest in the position for which you applied or interviewed and it helps you stand out among other candidates.
Following up could even be the difference between getting the job or getting the hose — almost 15% of hiring managers said they wouldn’t hire someone who didn’t send a thank-you note after an interview, and 32% said they would think less of a candidate who didn’t follow up.
Here are 5 tips for following up:
1. Do it soon
Don’t waste time after your interview — send an email follow up within 24 hours, and a snail-mail follow up soon thereafter.
If you’re pre-interview stage, a recent survey found that job seekers should follow up within two weeks of submitting a resume; specifically, 38% of senior managers surveyed recommended following up in one week or less, and 43% said one to two weeks.
2. Ditch the keyboard
Email is a great way to follow up quickly, but nothing replaces a hand-written note. You don’t need to do this unless you’ve formally interviewed with a company; if they gave you their time and consideration, you can surely take the time to write a note thanking them. A handwritten note will show that you’re thorough, detail-oriented, and very interested in the position.
3. Reiterate your qualifications
Use your follow up as an opportunity to reiterate why you’re qualified for a position. If you’re following up after an interview, take this time to say anything you had forgotten to say during the meeting. This is your last shot to sell yourself and your services!
4. Keep it short and sweet
Hiring managers appreciate follow-ups, no doubt — but don’t ramble on and don’t be repetitive. Keep your thank you email to one or two short paragraphs, and limit your handwritten note to the size of a basic thank-you card. Remember, you’re saying thank you and reinforcing why you’re right for the job, not applying a second time.
5. Don’t limit your follow up
Following up is necessary after submitting an application and after interviewing for a position; but, another important time to follow up is after networking. In times like these, send a quick email to your new contact saying how nice it was to meet them and that you hope to stay in contact in the future.
How do you follow up? How important do you think following up is to a job search? Let us know below.