Congratulations, you successfully finished an interview! But what now? Should you wait and see if someone reaches out to you, should you give them a call, or send an email? When should you follow up? A few hours or a few days? Following up after an interview can be a key factor in whether you get a second interview or are possibly offered a job. However, how and when you follow up can be just as important as what you say.
Step one after an interview is the thank-you note. If you send an email the day after an interview asking if you got the job that is not going to go over well. Companies take time to interview and make decisions, so instead sending a thank-you note within the first day can help influence those decisions in a positive way rather than seeming overbearing or desperate. If you need help crafting a professional thank-you note check out this article.
I know it can be stressful, but once you’ve sent the thank-you note that is your time to be patient and wait for a response. At the end of the interview, if not already stated, you should have asked what the next steps are in the hiring process. If the person that you interviewed with said they would follow up within the next week, giving them that week before reaching out can show that you listened and respect their time. If it has been and week and you haven’t heard anything back, that’s when it’s your turn to reach out with an email.
Drafting this email can seem a bit daunting. You may think you sound desperate or annoying. However, if you do it right, a follow up email can show that you are still interested in the opportunity and are excited to start contributing to the company. Your email should be personalized and professional, while also respectfully reminding the interviewer that they said they would have made a decision by now. Make sure you thank them again for their time and remind them what position you interviewed for. This may seem unnecessary but the company may be hiring for multiple positions and you don’t want to make them work to figure out who you are and what you’re interested in. Try replying to the last email correspondence between the two of you, most people are more likely to open a response to an ongoing conversation rather than a whole new email. You want to keep it short, let them know that you are still interested and are excited to hear an update. You may want to offer to provide additional information if needed, this is a call to action, and may compel the interviewer to reach back out to you. Finally, sign off with a polite conclusion and make sure to include your contact information. Don’t make them work to figure out how to contact you.
Subject line: Checking in RE: (Job Title) Role
Dear (Hiring Manager),
I hope you’re well! I interviewed for the [job title] position on [interview date], and you mentioned your team would be finalizing a hiring decision this week. It was great to meet with the team and I’m looking forward to your update. Please let me know if there’s anything else I can provide to assist in the decision-making process.
(Name, Phone #, Email)
If the email didn’t work, and you still haven’t heard anything, you may want to trying giving them a call. If you get in contact with the hiring manager remind them when you interviewed and when you sent the follow up email. Reiterate that you are interested in the position and ask if they have any updates without seeming demanding or impatient. If you have to leave a message, make it short. State that you were following up on an email that you sent a few days ago and are interested in an update on the opportunity. Again, make sure to include the position that you are interested in and your contact info.
At this point, if you haven’t received a response you may want to make the difficult decision to move on. You’ve tried your best and done all you can do, if they haven’t reached out, they most likely never will. But don’t let this discourage you. This is an all too common part of interviewing, most companies may not have the time to reach out to every rejection, some may not have the heart, and some may not care. Keep your head held high and keep on trying. Your next dream job may be just around the corner!