After the Interview’s Over: Advice Most People Ignore and Why It Hurts Them


EntryLevelLifeButton_E So all the hard work you put into creating your résumé, building your references list, and networking with individuals in your field of interest paid off for you. You landed a job interview, and you feel like it went really well. So, what’s the next step? Following up. You haven’t received a job offer yet, so you still need to stand out in the interviewer’s mind and let them know you want the job.

Following up after an interview is a major part of the job search process that a lot of people know but choose to ignore. When you don’t show interest in finding out how your interview went, the employer could take that as a sign you’re not really concerned about working for their company. Instead of spending your time worrying and waiting after your interview, follow this advice to help advance your way to a second interview, or even better, to getting a job offer.

Ask about the decision making process. At the end of your interview, ask the interviewer what their timeline and process is for making a decision. The goal is for you to find out when you should expect to know their decision or next step. This way, you’re not just sitting around wondering about when they’re going to call.

Send a thank-you letter. This is common courtesy and an important gadget in your job search toolkit. Within 24 hours of your interview, be sure to send a thank-you letter to the interviewer. Sending a letter this soon after your interview will keep your meeting fresh in the employer’s mind and you can easily personalize the letter with key points you discussed. Thank them for taking time out of their day to meet with you. Also, use this as an opportunity to reiterate your interest in the job opportunity, your excitement for it, and what value you can bring to their business. Let them know you look forward to hearing from them, and be sure to include your contact information. And, FYI, if you make it to a second interview, send another thank-you letter after that meeting.

For more tips on writing a follow-up thank you note, click here.

Call the interviewer. After you submit your thank-you letter, sit back and wait. Be respectful of the interviewer’s time. Yes, you can be the squeaky wheel who calls the interviewer every day, but constantly contacting them to check the status of the job could end up causing you to lose points in their eyes, and even worse, miss out on a great job.

If you haven’t heard from the employer by the follow-up date they gave you at the end of your interview, contact them about the status of the job. Let them know you’re still interested in the position and ask them if there’s anything else you need to do or any other information you need to supply to help with their decision about you. 

Ask for feedback. If by chance you didn't get selected for the job, be sure to politely ask the interviewer for feedback on why you didn’t get the position. Also, ask if they can provide you with some tips on things you could improve on. This will help you better yourself for the next interview that comes your way.

Thank them … again. Regardless of the outcome of the interview, take a moment to say a final thanks to your interviewer for their time. Let them know it was a pleasure to meet them, and ask them if they have an account on LinkedIn or Twitter so you can stay in touch and continue to build a professional networking relationship.  

These are a few simple steps to help you make the most of following up after an interview. But, always make sure to contact your interviewer after you’ve met. In today’s job market, it’s important to stand out from the competition in a positive way, and following these tips will help you do that. Taking this initiative to go the extra mile in pursuing a job speaks volumes about your character to an employer, giving you a great advantage over those who don’t follow up.

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