According to a study conducted by TopResume, 68% of hiring managers have said that follow-up messages play a role in their hiring decision. In fact, this study also found that one in five interviewers have completely dismissed a candidate due to lack of follow up. Following up is a simple way to show gratitude, convey professionalism, and remain top of mind for hiring managers. However, when deciding how to construct and deliver your follow up, there are critical factors that must be considered to maximize the impact and effectiveness of this action. The tips below will help you stand out as a prime candidate for the role.
- Frequency – Whether it be a phone, video, or in-person interview, it’s imperative that you follow up after every interview with each person you met. Send your initial follow up message within 24 hours of your meeting. Timing matters, especially when the role needs to be filled quickly. After you’ve sent your initial message, rest easy for a bit. Follow up is key in demonstrating professional persistence, but it’s important to remember not to overdo it at the risk of coming across as overbearing or desperate. During the interview, ask when you should expect to hear back from them to give yourself a reasonable timeline to base your outreach. If you still haven’t heard anything by the given time, check in. Limit this follow up to once or twice a week until you get a response.
- Method – There are a plenty of ways to follow up, but it’s important you pick the right one. For example, if the hiring manager has indicated that they’re going to make a quick decision, email would be the fastest and best option. If the role is primarily client-facing or requires a lot of verbal communication, call to demonstrate your strong interpersonal skills. It’s also important to evaluate the company culture when determining the best method. For example, if the company is more traditional, send a letter for your follow up. However, keep in mind that you always want to send your initial follow up within 24 hours of meeting.
- Content – Now that you’ve determined the best outreach method, it’s time to map out your message. Start with your full name, the role you’re being considered for, and when you met with this contact. Next, thank them for their time in a unique way, customizing this element with details from your meeting to show genuine gratitude for the experience. Mention anything you forgot to say during the interview, convey your enthusiasm for the role, and remind them why you’re qualified for the position, reiterating your career experience that they liked during the interview. If you’re calling, make a list of key points ahead of time to avoid forgetting something important. Remember to keep it short and simple, don’t reiterate your entire resume. If your message takes an email or letter format, proofread. Then, proofread it again. Proofread it one more time and take special care with names. The importance of this step cannot be reiterated enough, as spelling or grammatical errors may result in disqualification for the role.