Articles for Professionals

Following Up After an Interview – The RIGHT Way


How do you maintain contact with an employer without being too pushy?

Let’s say you feel pretty good about things and the interviewer said, “Keep in touch!”

Awesome. But a couple of weeks go by and nothing’s happened. So what do you do now? Can you follow up without reeking of desperation or looking like a pest?

Many people, would rather do absolutely nothing than risk looking stupid or making the wrong follow-up move. Others can bring themselves undone by coming on too strong.

So what’s the answer, how do you stay front of mind without becoming a pest?

Ask About The Next Steps BEFORE You Leave the Interview.
If you ask the interviewer what happens next, you know exactly when it’s acceptable to follow up. If the they say they’ll be contacting candidates within a week, and it’s day 9? It’s completely OK to touch base and refer to the time frame provided. Don’t be pushy, but a quick note is perfect:

“Hi [interviewers name] – I hope you’re having a great week. You mentioned that your team would be finalising a hiring decision for the [advertised role] this week. I’m eager to hear when you have an update. And certainly, if I can provide any additional information to support the decision-making process, please let me know.”

Get That Thank-You Note to the Interviewer, ASAP.
Thank-you notes matter: They give you a terrific opportunity to follow up with the decision-maker right away. I encourage job seekers to get thank-you notes out (to each individual they’ve met in the interview process) immediately after the interview. Same day. From your laptop in the parking lot, if you really want to wow them. DO NOT do this from your phone with ‘Sent from my [brand name] phone’ in the signature. For the sake of professionalism, use a personalised signature (I accept that not everyone is as troubled by this as I am).

This sort of gesture provides confirmation for the interviewers that you’re on top of things and would bring considerable value into the position. After all, if you can show this attention to clients/members, you’ll be great for business.

If Things Drag Out, Check In (Periodically).
This is the job search technique people tend to stink at the most—the periodic check-in. But it’s so important, and it should be used throughout your career to keep your network fresh and engaged.

Now, this is not about harassment of the recruiting manager: “Did I get the job?” “Do you have a job for me?” “Did you make a decision?” Not at all. It’s about offering something of value to your contact. And in doing so, you will also (by default) remind them that you’re still out there.

If you’ve made good use of advice that the interviewing manager provided, email them to thank them. Keep it simple and brief, and don’t ask for anything back. You might choose to forward an article that you think they’ll find interesting, or congratulate them if you notice they’ve been promoted or earned some sort of recognition. For example…

“Hi [employer], We spoke two months ago about the [job category] role advertised. In our conversation, you highlighted some emerging trends in group training. I noticed this attached article about the same topic and thought of you. No response necessary. I hope you find the information useful!”

Nothing elaborate, and no more than once a month. And you can be assured that you will be remembered, in a good way.

Please note, these suggestions relate to following up after an interview.

Following up after your initial application should only be to confirm your application has been received. Pushing for any more than this is likely to be viewed as pestering/interrupting and has the potential to work against you.

Regards, Dennis.

Picture 15Founder and Managing Director of HealthyPeople and FITREC. Driven to help people enjoy the career/business in fitness that they’re looking for. Catch my HealthyPeople updates via @dennishosking


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