Because how you follow up after an interview is more important than you think.

job interview followup

(And if you’re wondering about the age-old question in the title of this article, see the answer below… )

This is a guest post by Carolyn K. If you’d also like to guest post here on JobMob, follow these guest post guidelines.

You wouldn’t take a pretty girl on one date and expect her to do all the work of getting in touch with you for a second date, would you? I don’t care how charming you are. That’s a recipe for a lonely night.

That same line of thinking applies to job hunting. If you walked out the door of your job interview and thought that was the end of it, think again.

The follow-up is an oft-misunderstood art form. Too often a job is lost because a very well-qualified applicant displays no more interest in the job as soon as the door to the HR office closes behind them.

If you’re looking to master the art of the follow-up, here are a few tips.

Get their business card

Do not leave the interviewer’s office without getting a business card. If the interviewer asks if you have any questions for him/her, make sure you ask for a business card. This will be crucial to the ensuing steps.

Send a thank you email

When you get home from the interview, shoot off an email to the interviewer, thanking him or her for his time and expressing your interest in the job, again. This will show the interviewer that you’re serious about working with the company and will probably separate you from half the field of candidates who did not take time to take this action.

Send a thank you letter

You should also utilize snail mail to show the interviewer how serious you are. While emails and phone calls can come across as somewhat cold forms of communication, handwritten notes are warm.

In your note, thank them for their time and address a few of the things you discussed in the interview. For instance, if the interviewer mentioned that the company is looking for goal oriented people to take on a new project, mention how you have exercised and demonstrated your ability to achieve goals. Tailor the letter to the company you’re sending it to.

Call for a status check

One week after the interview, call the interviewer’s office and ask about the status of the job search. If you can’t speak with the interviewer, leave a message on their phone.

One week after that, send an email to the interviewer basically saying the same thing.

Don’t overdo it

It is possible to come off as overly pushy. The fact is that the HR rep you talked to might be very busy with a lot of new hires. Do not cold call or email more than once in a week. Give them time to respond and when you’re on the phone with them, be courteous and do not simply ask, “Did I get the job?”

The follow-up is a great tool in the interviewing process. It can separate the winners from the losers in the hunt for employment, but it will only help if you do your initial homework on the company and properly prepare for the interview.

Finally- when to follow-up or to follow up? Only when using the term as a verb is there NO hyphen e.g. “to follow up” is correct use, according to Writing Expert Lynn Gaertner-Johnston.

Question of the article

Which follow-up tactic has worked best for you? Tell us in the comments.

About the Author

carolyn k portraitCarolyn is a guest blogger who writes about the job market, LPN programs, and resume workshops for Braintrack.com.

If you liked this article, you’ll also enjoy How to Quickly Recover From Bad Job Interviews.

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--Jacob Share