Have you ever experienced radio silence after an interview? Even an interview that you felt had gone well? One of the easiest and best ways to overcome radio silence is with consistent and timely follow up. Whether you’ve just completed a screening call or first interview with HR or recruiter, or just stepped away from a technical interview with an entire team or direct hiring manager, following up will go a long way to set you apart from your competition as someone to hire. Incorporating these interview follow-up tips into your job search routine is a great start.
1. Don’t wait!
Take the time to reach out and follow up. Remember, not hearing back from HR, your recruiter, or the hiring manager doesn’t necessarily mean they don’t want to proceed. Set a calendar invite for yourself as a reminder to follow up every 3 to 5 days. If you are actively interviewing or exchanging hiring details for the role, following up every day is preferred.
2. Keep it short.
When sending a follow-up message, think about it in the same way you would if you were texting someone; start with a pleasantry, keep it short, and remember, there is no need to apologize for following up. A quick note of thanks for their time is all you need.
3. Keep following up until you have a reason not to.
Stay positive, remember that delays in getting back to you can happen for a multitude of reasons. Take delays in stride and continue to follow up until you have a good reason not to.
Yet, as important as following up is, knowing when NOT to follow up is important too. For instance, be mindful of timelines. If feedback timelines have been provided to you during the hiring process, or the hiring manager tells you to expect feedback within a specific timeframe, set yourself a reminder to follow up AFTER that timeframe, not before. This is true for HR and recruiter timelines as well.
What if you’ve been rejected for the role? Should you follow up? Even if you’ve been rejected for the role, sending a follow-up note of gratitude for having been considered is a great way to express your continued interest in the company and help you stand out as a potential fit for similar roles as they become available.
Remember, even if the role you interviewed for doesn’t work out for you, by following up you show that you are professional, courteous, and sincerely interested. This way, if an alternate role should become available in the future, you’ll be top of mind for them as someone to reach out to and to hire.
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