Interviewing

Your Job Search Follow-up Stinks

follow up

Job search follow-up is deplorable! It’s the weakest part of the job search process.

Follow-up, at a minimum, means sending thank you notes, but most people don’t even do that. Thank you notes and follow-up communications are not optional for job seekers. They are required.

Great follow-up can put you ahead of other candidates because:

  • It shows persistence.
  • It allows you to expand, reinforce or clarify something discussed in an interview.
  • Good manners are always valued.
  • It prevents companies from forgetting about you.
  • It reinforces that you want the job.
  • Not following up is risky because some hiring managers will dismiss an applicant who does not send a post-interview thank you note, saying it indicates poor follow-through and a lack of interest in the position. Also, other candidates will follow up, so you could lose the opportunity to compete for the job.

Here are the 6 steps to writing a memorable thank you note:

  1. Send a note within 24 hours while it’s still fresh in your mind — and while you are fresh in the interviewer or hiring manager’s mind.
  2. Address a note to each individual person you met.
  3. Spell everyone’s name correctly, including the company’s.
  4. Start by thanking them for the opportunity to meet, and acknowledge that they took time out of their day to do so.
  5. Next, note why you think you’d be a good fit for the role. No more than three reasons. Bullet points are optimal as well. This is an opportunity to elaborate on why you are a great fit, in writing, beyond your initial cover letter and interview.
  6. In your close, hit these three points: Express your interest, commit to following up with them again within a specified timeframe, and thank them, again, for their time and consideration.

About the Author

Dana Manciagli is an executive career coach, keynote speaker and the author of Cut the Crap, Get a Job! A New Job Search Process for a New Era. Find out more on danamanciagli.com.