Last time I shared a blog post to help you ace the job interview, but now what? Waiting to hear back after a job interview can be one of the most nerve-wracking times for a job seeker. You might wonder how well you communicated during the interview and then feel like you have no control over the impending decision. The good news is that there are a few strategies you can use to follow up that may help your chances of getting an offer.
Ask questions at the end of interview
Before you leave the interview, ask the interviewer for a business card so you have their contact information. Ask when you can expect to hear back, and if you may follow-up if you have not heard back within that time frame. For example you might say, “I enjoyed our conversation, and I’m very interested in this opportunity. If I haven’t heard from you within two weeks, may I follow up to check on the status?” If they don’t have cards, ask for a phone # or email address.
Follow up via email
If you don’t hear back within the stated time frame, do take the time to send an email. This will be at least the second email you have sent, since you already sent a thank you email immediately after the interview, right? Following up politely will not hinder your chances, and it could be positive because it demonstrates your strong interest (and continued availability). Here is a sample email:
Dear Mr. /Ms. Last Name:
I wanted to follow up with regarding the Software Engineer we discussed on 11/25. I remain highly interested in the opportunity, and I believe this is a strong fit with my education and skills. I can provide any additional information you need upon request.
Please feel free to contact me at any time if further information is needed. My cell phone number is (555) 111-1111. I look forward to hearing from you soon. Thank you again for your time and consideration.
The extra interaction that you have with the manager helps build the relationship, particularly if you get and accept the offer. In addition, even if you end up as the second choice for one job, you might be considered for another position in the organization, based on your enthusiasm. If you and this particular interviewer had an exchange during your interview, feel free to mention it again. For example, I’ve had an interview where I’ve asked the interviewer what publications they read regularly to stay up to date. In a follow-up email I might mention how I looked into the publication and what I learned from or liked about it. Do this only if you’ve followed through—don’t lie about it.
You should continue seeking other opportunities, even if you felt very positive about an interview. There are factors beyond your control (hiring freeze?) so until you have an actual offer, keep looking. If you do get another offer, then you may have the leverage to accelerate a hiring decision, one way or the other.
Following up does not guarantee a job offer, but it keeps the communication going! If you do something different, I’d love to hear about it—leave a comment to share!