What Should I Do After My Job Interview?
You just left the interview and think it went great. Now it’s time to keep the momentum going.
Send a Thank You
You can send a thank you via email (quick, but not very personal), mail (lacks the immediacy of an email, but offers a bigger impact due to the perceived time and care in writing it), or by dropping off a handwritten note the next day (a good strategy for big companies when you can hand the envelope to the receptionist). Select the best option based on personal preference and timeframe (if known).
Thank the interviewer for the opportunity to talk with him or her about the job. (If you interviewed with multiple people, send a personalized thank you note to each person.) Reiterate your interest in the position. Mention something specific from the interview, or take the opportunity to share something you may have forgotten to note in the interview. Wrap up by stating you’ll follow up on a specific date.
What Else You Should Be Doing
Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Keep applying for other positions, even while you’re waiting to hear back. It will give you more leverage in negotiating a job offer if you have more than one position being offered to you, and second, some jobs never get filled.
Begin researching salary.You can look on a site like Glassdoor for company-specific information or on sites like the Bureau of Labor wage and statistic data and Salary.com for salary data for similar job titles in your geographic area.
Reach out to your network. If someone you knew at the company had passed your resume along, check in with him or her. Your contact may be able to provide you with insight about the number of candidates interviewing, how you were perceived, or other information about the process and company culture.
Touch base with your references. Let them know that you’ve interviewed for the position (give them the job title and company) and that they may be contacted. Make sure they have an updated copy of your resume. Ask them to let you know if they hear from the company.
Start preparing for the next round of interviews. Research the company further. If you anticipate being asked about a specific project, put together a brag book or portfolio to use. Google the company and find out what they’re working on and how this job might impact their future plans.
How and When to Follow-Up
If the interviewer did not mention a timeframe for making a decision — or you didn’t ask — wait a few days (more than three but less than seven) before reaching out.
A phone call is usually the best way to follow up (unless the interviewer said otherwise). Try to reach the person directly and only leave a voicemail if you can’t reach them after a couple of tries.
Remind the interviewer of who you are (including a five-second blurb that can act as an audio clue to help the interviewer remember you: “I’m the candidate who managed Brown Corporation’s transition to a fully online platform”), and say, “I just wanted to reach out to you and make sure you had everything you needed from me in order to consider me for the (job title) job. Do you need anything else from me at this time?”
That makes it easy for him or her to say, “No, we have everything we need” (the usual response), but it also flows into your follow-up questions, which can include:
- Have you decided on candidates for the second interview yet?
- Is the next step still (whatever the interviewer had outlined as the next step in the process)
- Would it be okay if I checked back in with you (and be sure to ask when you should do that)
If the interviewer did state a timeframe that has since passed, don’t panic. It’s extremely common for hiring processes to take longer than anticipated. People get busy, get sick, go on vacation, or have to deal with emergencies. Sometimes priorities change and an urgent hiring situation becomes less urgent. All of these can lengthen the timeframe without being communicated to you. Other delays can include reference checking or the job being offered to another candidate, but rejected.
Follow up with every job application and interview until you’re told the position has been filled. This is where persistence comes into play as one of the keys to a successful job search.
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