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So, you want to learn how to follow up with an email after a job interview. No doubt the following situation strikes a chord with you:
You’ve completed a job interview, and you’re sure you nailed it. Your resume is on point, your responses to the questions were timely and informative, and you made a great impression with your confidence and charisma.
But the next step is just as important as what came before: you need to send a follow-up email that nails the conversation down further and leaves an even stronger impression on your interviewer. Unfortunately, this part can be tricky.
How should you follow up after an interview? When is it too soon or too late to send a thank-you note?
Worry no more. This post covers many of the above questions and more. It also provides practical tips for executing your email before finishing off with some examples of follow-up emails after a job interview for you to draw inspiration from.
How Long Should You Wait After an Interview to Follow Up?
The hiring process can be lengthy and quite a pain for all parties involved. As a candidate, you want to know as quickly as possible if you got the job or not so that you can go on with your life. It can be just as torturous for the employer to wait for each candidate’s references to check out before deciding.
The timing of your follow-up is crucial: too early, and you might sound desperate; too late, and you’ve lost your chance.
But when is the appropriate time to follow up after an interview?
The safest general rule is to follow the timeline provided during the interview.
It’s normal for an interviewer to say, “We’ll decide in three weeks and let all applicants know by email.” In that case, it’s best to avoid contacting the company until those three weeks are up.
However, this is not always the case. If your interviewer doesn’t give you a specific timeframe to follow up, then you can use the guidelines below:
Professional courtesy demands that you send a thank-you note via email to each interviewer as soon as possible after the appointment (within 24 hours). A staggering 68% of hiring managers and recruiters admit that a thank you note could influence their hiring decisions.
But a template thank-you note won’t get you anywhere. Instead, craft a personalized message that appreciates the interviewer for their time and reiterates your interest in the position. You should also include any additional information they may have requested during your interview or perhaps mention something you forgot to bring up during the meeting—such as a portfolio of your work.
Although sending a hand-written note may have been standard in past generations, nowadays, it’s more acceptable (and convenient) to email each individual involved in your interview. Keep your thank-you note short and sweet—a few sentences thanking them for their time will suffice.
Talking of statistics, 44% of candidates can expect to receive feedback within two weeks after the interview. Only 37% hear back from the company within a week. So, if you don’t hear back after 10-14 days, it’s acceptable to follow up with a polite email reminding them of your interest in the position.
If you still haven’t heard back after 3-4 weeks, it’s okay to send another follow-up email as a last resort.
When done right, these little touches can leave a good impression on your interviewer and help seal the deal in your favor.
Is It Okay to Follow Up With an Email After a Job Interview if You Haven’t Heard Back?
Yes, absolutely! It’s not only okay to follow up with an employer after a job interview if you haven’t heard back, but also highly recommended.
You don’t want to be the only candidate who doesn’t follow up—it could make you seem apathetic and unprofessional. If you don’t hear back in a few days (or a week at most), consider sending a quick email to the point of contact to express your interest in the position. That will also help you stand out from other candidates who don’t follow up.
Your follow-up email should be brief but firm. Please don’t act like the outcome hinges entirely on the company’s response. This will only make them feel overwhelmed and more likely to drag their feet on getting back in touch with you.
If done correctly, following up can demonstrate your enthusiasm for the position.
The truth is that most hiring managers are extremely busy, and it’s easy for things to slip through the cracks. You might have been the perfect candidate for a position, but they may have forgotten about you because of other tasks on their plate. A follow-up email could be what you need to remind them of your candidacy and help move your application along.
Following up can even convey soft skills like attention to detail and organization. Even if it doesn’t directly land you a job offer, it could still indirectly boost your chances of getting hired by showing employers that you’re responsive and dependable.
How to Follow Up With an Email After a Job Interview
Hiring managers may not remember every interviewee or discussion they had with you. But while it’s necessary to follow up with them, there’s a right and wrong way to craft and send such correspondence.
Below are a few guidelines to follow:
1. Who to send the email to
You want to make sure your message gets delivered to the right person—preferably someone with direct influence in the hiring decision.
It’s generally best to send your follow-up email to the person who interviewed you. But also be sure to send a brief email update to the recruiter who arranged your interview in the first place.
The recruiter may not have been in the room with you. But they are typically most up to date on where things stand regarding the recruitment progress and how far along in the interview process each candidate is. They will appreciate a quick line saying how well things went and that you’re looking forward to hearing back soon (the key here is not to overdo it).
However, it’s generally recommended to send separate follow-up emails to each person who interviewed you.
Never address an interview follow-up email as “To Whom It May Concern.” That will undoubtedly come across as impersonal and lazy.
What if you don’t have the interviewer’s contact?
The most obvious case is when you receive an email from one person inviting you to the interview, but other people get involved in the decision or the actual meeting.
In that case, it’s okay to send them a separate email asking for an introduction to whom you should contact about the next steps. Assuming Mary invited you to the appointment, you could try something like this:
I enjoyed my interview with your colleagues on Monday. I wanted to reach out and thank everyone again for their time. Who would be my main point of contact as I move forward in this process? I’d love to stay in touch with all of you throughout this process.”
This will help ensure that whoever responds gets your message and can pass it along internally as needed. And if Mary’s response is, “Oh, we actually don’t have any further news,” then at least you’re finding out sooner rather than later.
2. How to execute the email
A follow-up email done wrong might be more harmful than helpful. You want to appear thoughtful and professional but not desperate or annoying. And most importantly, you want the interviewer to know that you are interested in the job—but how exactly do you communicate that?
Here’s how to craft a thoughtful follow-up email that’ll make you shine in the eyes of a potential employer:
Use a relevant subject line
The average office worker receives more than 120 emails per day. When people are overwhelmed by their inboxes, there’s a chance of your message going unnoticed. Stand out with a relevant subject line.
Subjects like “Following up” or “Just checking in” can seem overly generic and even passive-aggressive.
Instead, include a few keywords from your original message for reference. For example: “Following up on our Wednesday’s meeting regarding [position]” or “Great Speaking With You Today, [interviewer’s name].”
Begin with an appropriate salutation
Don’t just jump right into your message like you’re continuing the conversation where you left off—that can come across as rude or inconsiderate. And again, it’s not the time for “hey” or “hi.”
Instead, use their formal title and last name: “Dear Mr. John Smith.” If you don’t know their title, go with the all-purpose and universally appropriate “Dear Ms./Mr.”
Express your gratitude
Start the email body by expressing gratitude for the interviewer’s time. It’s common courtesy. Plus, it’ll immediately put them in a good mood and make it easier to read through the rest of your letter.
Reemphasize your interest in the position
Do this by referencing something specific discussed during your meeting—something that sparked your interest or got you excited about the job.
It’s also a perfect opportunity to address any concerns or clarify anything discussed in the meeting. And don’t forget to invite the interviewer to request further information!
Keep it short and sweet
Don’t write a book. You don’t want your email to be too long that it’s overwhelming for the recipient. But still, make sure to capture the details that matter most.
Check over your email carefully. Typos and grammatical errors can detract from your message. They could mean instant disqualification as they indicate carelessness or lack of attention.
Lastly, don’t forget to sign off by thanking them for their time again. In addition, include something along the lines of “Best regards,” “Many thanks,” or “Sincerely,” and possibly your contact information at the end.
3. When to send the email
Write as soon as you can after the interview is over. Ideally, send your email on the same day as your interview or, at the latest, one day later. That shows the interviewer that you’re excited about the job and eager to move forward in the hiring process.
What Should You Say in a Follow-Up Email After an Interview?
Feel free to customize the following example when crafting a follow-up email after a job interview:
Dear [Interviewer’s last name],
I’m writing to express my gratitude for the opportunity to interview for the position of [role]. It was a pleasure speaking with you and learning more about the role and your company.
I appreciate your insights into this position, especially [list some specific details or information that stood out to you]. After our meeting, I am even more excited about this opportunity and believe this position is an excellent match for my skills and interests.
I’m excited to learn about the next steps in the hiring process. In the meantime, please let me know if I can provide any additional information that could aid your decision-making process.
I look forward to hearing from you.
[Your full name]
How Do I Write a Second Follow-Up Email After a Job Interview?
A second follow-up email becomes appropriate if you don’t hear back from the hiring manager or recruiter within a week after sending the thank you email. However, you should be strategic, and here are some tips for getting it right:
Your subject line should be direct and specific. And since you’re following up about the status of your candidacy, it should be clear that’s what you’re doing. Something like “Quick Question About Position Status,” or “Following Up on [job title]” will do the trick.
In the first paragraph, include a sentence to provide context for who you are and the position you interviewed for. For example: “As we discussed on January 5th, I am writing to follow up on my application for the assistant editor position.”
Follow up by reaffirming your interest in the position.
In the third paragraph, ask about the status of your candidacy. Don’t be shy here — ask straight up what’s happening regarding filling the role in question! Here are some examples:
- “Do you know when I might expect to hear back regarding this opportunity?”
- “Would you mind furnishing me with your timeframe for deciding on this position?”
Next, offer thanks for their time and consideration. After which, conclude with your full name and contact information.
Example email script
Hi [Interviewer’s last name]
I hope you’re having a great week so far! I just wanted to follow up on my application for the [job title] position at [company name]. I’m very interested in joining your team and helping to [something relevant to the job]!
I know you’re busy, but I was hoping we could get in touch so that I could learn more about the status of my candidacy and how you’d like to proceed.
Additionally, if there are any other questions or opportunities for me to provide more information, please don’t hesitate to reach out. I hope to hear from you soon!
How Do You Ask If you’re Still Being Considered for a Job?
It’s been a couple of weeks since you applied for that job you wanted. You haven’t heard back from the hiring manager, but you’re still interested in the position and want to keep your name in the running.
So how do you ask if your candidacy is still under consideration?
Well, there’s a fine line between being proactive and being annoying. The last thing you want to do is make a negative impression by coming across as pushy or desperate. But it helps to stay top-of-mind for hiring managers, especially if it’s an industry synonymous with job scarcity and fierce competition.
You’ve got to strike the right balance between expressing interest and not becoming an annoyance.
A simple email will suffice: express your enthusiasm for the opportunity. Much of the email structure is similar to the follow-up emails discussed earlier. The email template below should be of help.
Example email script
Dear Mr. / Mrs. [Interviewer’s name],
I trust you’re well. Thank you for speaking with me about the open position at [company name]. I enjoyed our conversation, and I think my background and experience make me a strong candidate for this position.
I am still very eager to learn more about the job and would greatly appreciate any information you could provide me with on whether or not I am still under consideration.
Please let me know if there is anything else I can provide before you decide. Thank you again for your time!
And folks, that’s how to follow up with an email after a job interview.
There’s no worse feeling in the interview cycle than letting an opportunity slip through your fingers because you were too busy or unprofessional to thank the interviewer for their time and consideration.
A strong follow-up email continues the conversation after the interview, allowing you to reaffirm your interest in the company and enthusiasm for your position. And who knows that a carefully worded email could be just what you’ll need to land your dream job?
I hope the above tips and examples help you follow up like a pro and increase your odds of success. Best of luck in your job hunting!
If you’re trying to get a gauge on how your interview went, check out this post next: 8 Signs an Interview Went Well