Job Interviews

5 Tips For Following Up After A Job Interview

Happy man on laptop follows up with an employer after a job interview

If you’re not using the best, most effective methods of following up after a job interview, you’re missing out on the chance to score some easy points that could push you over the top and out of the unemployment line.

Make sure you’re going above and beyond to impress interviewers and secure the job. Here are some guidelines for the perfect interview follow-up strategy.

1. Sooner Is Better

In a CareerBliss poll asking how soon people follow up after a job interview, 39% of respondents said they do it the next day. Good answer, according to career expert Vicky Oliver. Oliver, author of 301 Smart Answers to Tough Interview Questions, says the best time to reach out after an interview is within 24 hours. The 61% of poll respondents who said they wait two to three days, a week, or never follow up should take note.

“If you’re incredibly lucky,” Oliver says, “the interviewer will hit the email back to you saying she/he really enjoyed meeting you, and voila—now you’re in the running! These rules apply even if an executive recruiter helped you land the interview.”

2. The 3-Paragraph Rule

Your follow-up email should be short, sweet, and personalized. Generally, a good rule of thumb for the length is three paragraphs, with no more than two or three sentences in each paragraph.

  • First Paragraph: Briefly thank them for their time and reiterate your interest in the position.
  • Second Paragraph: Discuss a couple of your strengths and how the company would benefit if you were hired. Consider using bullet points to break up your text.
  • Third Paragraph: Include any points of clarification you might have. Include answers to questions that you weren’t able to answer during the interview, or add new info about yourself that was left out of the interview. But remember, keep it brief.
Oliver suggests indicating your next point of contact by saying something along the lines of, “Look forward to hearing from you within the next two weeks.” If no date was set at the interview, either ask for one or specify you will loop back to them for a decision in two weeks.

3. Double-Check Their Names

Candidates should “double check the spelling of the interviewer’s name, his or her title, and the address of the company,” Oliver says. While you’re at it, don’t forget to spellcheck the entire letter. These steps may seem obvious, but all too often minor spelling and grammatical blunders get through, making the candidate look careless.

4. Avoid Follow-Up Faux Pas

After you have written your notes, double-check to ensure that you have avoided these common mistakes:

  • Repetition
  • Negativity
  • Cheesy emoticons and exclamation points
  • Informal language
  • Grammar/spelling errors

5. Don’t Call Them, They’ll Call You

Usually, toward the end of an interview, hiring managers will indicate a general time for when they will contact you. If this was not addressed, be sure to ask them to give you an idea in your initial follow-up email. Only call the employer if that date has passed. Call any time before then and you will come off as desperate and bothersome.

Need more help with your job search?

Become a member to learn how to land a job and UNLEASH your true potential to get what you want from work!

Man on laptop enjoys summer while working full time

There you are: sitting on the beach, covered in sunscreen, reading your favorite book, drinking your favorite drink under the cool shade of an umbrella. Life doesn't get any better than this. Suddenly, a door slams, a phone rings, a printer turns on. You jolt back into consciousness. You're at work, sitting in your cubicle, without even a hint of sunshine streaming in from outside.

Read moreShow less