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After the Interview: 10 Tips On Making Your Follow-up Stand Out
Did you know that only 2 percent of applicants get offered an interview? If you've already had your interview, that's a huge accomplishment.
The question is, what do you do next?
Following up is immensely important to seal the deal. You could've had a great interview, but so could the other hundred applicants. How can you set yourself apart?
By reminding the recruiter who you are and why you're qualified. But, that's just the start of why following up is important. Keep reading for ten follow-up tips for after the interview.
1. Don't Wait Too Long
It's 100 percent acceptable to follow-up within 24 hours of your interview. If you're following up via email, do it sooner than 24 hours.
Even if you're unsure of how the interview went, express how grateful you are. A speedy follow-up shows you're still interested in the position after the interview. It's your chance to tell them so, and to say thank you.
Some people prefer to send an email, a phone call, or a physical thank you note. Consider how the company you interviewed with communicates most.
Did they call you to offer the interview? Or did they email you? You can take their lead and use their communication method.
2. Send a Follow-up Email
If you choose to send them an email, use professional and polite language. Now is not the time to use internet slang or acronyms. Show your professionalism and intelligence.
Restate your interest in the position. Thank them for the opportunity to interview. Remind them of who you are and your qualifications.
Let them know you're looking forward to hearing back from them. Sign it professionally with your full name.
3. Follow-up Phone Call
If you decide to follow-up with a phone call, consider making some notes first. This is your chance to put a voice to the interview notes they have in front of them. Address them formally and with professionalism.
Introduce yourself with your full name. Mention the date and time you had your interview. Express gratitude and restate your interest in the position.
Making a phone call like this shows your communication skills. This is especially important to a company that does work over the phone.
4. Send a Thank You Note
Although emails and phone calls are great, don't discount physical thank you notes.
A physical note sent to their office is an unexpected gesture that shows your interest. It takes more effort to physically write a note and arrange its delivery than send an email.
Write your follow-up note the same way you'd write an email. Be professional, conversational, and polite. Be gracious; restate your interest. Let them know you're keen to hear back with the verdict.
5. Always Be Positive and Professional
No matter how comfortable you felt during the interview, you must remain professional. It's great that you were able to joke with the interviewer and build a rapport.
But, they are ultimately hiring someone to represent their brand. Being too casual or informal doesn't make the brand look professional.
Your follow-up message is not the time to nitpick the interview. Don't mention anything negative about it because that will put you in the "no" pile. Stay positive no matter what.
6. Restate Your Qualifications
You may be thinking, "Why do I have to restate my qualifications? They have them on my resume." But think about this: the interviewer won't have your specific resume on-hand at all times.
Your follow-up message reminds them of who you are and why you should get the job. Do the work for them by restating why you're qualified. Mention your key credentials or work experience; be brief and concise.
7. Resolve Interview Mistakes
It's normal to make mistakes in an interview. Your nerves were running high and it's easy to fumble your words. Your follow-up message is a chance to fix that mistake.
If you forgot to state a crucial part of your background or qualifications, state them now. If there was a question you didn’t answer the way you wanted, try again.
Remember that if you're doing a follow-up phone call, they might not have much time. Keep it short and concise. Emails may be more useful in this situation.
8. Proofread Before Sending
Always proofread your emails and notes before sending. Read them out loud to yourself to make sure they make sense.
Install the free Grammarly app onto your computer to spellcheck your emails. Misspelled words and incorrect grammar reflect poorly on you.
9. Don't Be Pushy
Sending a follow-up message via email, phone, and a note is too much. Recruiters won't hire you if you appear too eager or pushy. Show that you respect their time.
Send your follow-up message via the method of choice, and then wait. It can take weeks for the hiring process to finish, so be patient.
After a couple of weeks without hearing back, send a check-in message. Don't assume you didn't get the job; people and businesses are busy!
In your message, restate that you're looking forward to hearing back about the job. Be friendly and professional; show that you're interested, but not desperate.
10. Ask for Feedback
So, you had an interview but didn't get the job. Do you still have to follow-up?
There's no need to follow-up for that position anymore. But, you should call and ask the interviewer for feedback.
Ask them if they have a few minutes to explain how you could've done better in the interview. Maybe you didn't smile enough; maybe you lacked confidence. Feedback is crucial to improving so you can ace the next interview.
Want More 'After the Interview' Tips?
Your work isn't done when the interview ends. Following-up is an important component of the job search process.
Whether you send an email, note, or give them a call, make sure you thank them. They chose to spend that time interviewing you over someone else. Gratitude goes a long way.
No matter what happens after the interview, keep improving yourself. There are always things you can do to improve your resume and job search skills.
Check out our blog and articles for more info. And don't forget: practice makes perfect. Keep applying and keep interviewing.