At one point or another during the search for a new job, every aspiring employee arrives at an all-too familiar crossroads.The indecision may come the minute you’ve just finished a job interview or sent in your application, or in the hours and days afterwards as you wait to hear news from your prospective employer.
That question generally is: should I follow up with the potential employer after my job interview or application?And a second question typically flows from the first: does it really matter to my chances if I do follow up?
The simple and quick answer to the first question is: yes, you should follow up.
If you’ve been to a job interview, experts say that a simple “thank you” email sent to the employer soon after you leave is one of the easiest but least used tricks to impressing your potential future boss.
It is recommended you write a succinct, professional email of less than 100 words thanking them for their time and expressing gratitude for the opportunity to be considered for the position.
Depending on your time and dedication, some job-seekers even send an old-fashioned letter to the interviewer or employer – it may land on their desk a little later than an email, but a handwritten note can create a point of difference and a powerful impact.
So that’s the thank you note sorted out. What should you do if you haven’t heard back at all?
While there is no golden rule to follow, most experts suggest a timeframe of between three and five days after your interview or job application submission if you haven’t heard anything about an outcome. Make sure you keep your email or call brief, polite and professional. You might want to ask if they need any further information, or in the case of sending in your application to check that they received it.
But before you do, make sure you double-check the job advertisement and any other correspondence with the potential employer to ensure they haven’t stated any type of “do not contact us while we consider the applications” rule. It sends a very bad signal if a job-seeker didn’t pay close attention to any guidelines set down by the employer.
In summary, it is highly recommended you follow up after a job interview or job application, provided you maintain a high level of politeness, positivity and professionalism, and keep your correspondence (either via phone call, email or letter) succinct and respectful.
Your potential employer will notice the effort you’ve made, and in a competitive jobs market it may just give you the edge you need to land your dream job.
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