Tips for Following up After a Job Interview

how to follow up after a job interview chart

© The Balance, 2018

After you have a job interview, it's important to follow up and thank your interviewer for taking the time to meet. 

Along with expressing appreciation, your thank-you letter, email, or call is an opportunity to:

  • highlight your relevant qualifications;
  • show your enthusiasm for the role;
  • mention important details that didn't come up during the interview.

When you are selected for a job interview, it means that you're a serious contender for the job. That's why it's important to take the time to follow up after every single job interview, including in-person and phone interviews, as well as second interviews

By following up, you'll remind the interviewer that you're a strong candidate for the job. You'll reinforce that you're qualified and should be given serious consideration.

Sending a thank-you note also shows that you're interested in the position. If an employer is deliberating between two candidates with similar qualifications, a thank-you note could give you an edge over the competition. 

Here's more information on what to say and how to time your communication. 

How to Follow up After a Job Interview

If possible, collect business cards from everyone you meet during your interview. That way, you'll have people's contact information on hand.

If that isn't feasible, check LinkedIn for the interviewers' job titles, contact information, and the correct spelling of their names. If the information isn't listed, look up interviewers on the company website or call the company's mainline. A receptionist should be able to access the company directory and help you gather up details. 

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What to Include in Your Follow-Up Email or Letter

Promote your candidacy. Use your follow-up note to reiterate your interest in the job and the company.

Tell the interviewer why you are qualified. Highlight your relevant skills that are specific to the job's requirements.

What did you forget to say? Mention anything you wish you had said, but didn't, during the interview.

Clean up interview mistakes. If you misspoke during your interview or answered a question poorly, your thank-you note is a good place to rephrase and clarify what you intended to say. 

Include your contact information. Make it easy for the interviewer to get back in touch by including your phone number and email address in your correspondence.

Follow-Up Email Message and Thank-You Letter Tips

Follow the guidelines below when crafting your follow-up notes.

Send a thank- you letter or email  to everyone who interviewed you. It can be helpful to jot down some quick notes immediately after your interview to remind yourself of topics discussed and points you want to cover. 

Review examples of thank-you letters if you're not sure what to write.

Email is the fastest way to say thank-you after a job interview, especially if the interviewers hinted that they'll be making a quick decision. It's perfectly acceptable to send a thank you email message.

Consider sending a handwritten thank-you note in addition to your email message. Keep a box of thank-you cards and a book of stamps handy. Taking the time to write a note, put a stamp on it, and mail your thank-you will serve as another reminderthat you care enough about the job. In some industries, such as print publishing, handwritten notes are more common. Make sure to use your best handwriting! 

Don't wait. Send your note within 24 hours of the interview, sooner if you're emailing. The saying "he who hesitates is lost" can hold true when you're on the job hunt. 

Proofread your follow-up letters before you send them. A typo or a grammatical error can knock you out of contention. Be particularly mindful of people's names; spelling those incorrectly will definitely be noticed. 

Review an Example

Subject: Thank You – Customer Service Associate Position

Dear Mr./Ms. Last Name:

Thank you for taking the time to meet with me regarding the Customer Service Associate job. The position seems like a strong match for my skills and abilities, and I believe I would be an asset to your company.

The customer-first culture of the Bates Company meshes closely with the customer service skills I have acquired during my previous employment. 

In addition to my enthusiasm, I will bring to the position strong communication skills, attention to detail, and the ability to effectively and diplomatically resolve challenging customer issues.

If you have any questions, or I can provide you with further information regarding my candidacy, please don’t hesitate to ask.

I very much appreciate the time you took to interview me. I am very interested in working for you and look forward to hearing from you regarding the position.

Sincerely,

Your Name
Phone
Email

Follow-Up Phone Call Tips

Even though it's easier to send a quick email, making a follow-up phone call can help your candidacy for the job. What's more, if the job at hand involves a lot of phone time, calling to say thanks shows you have the strong communication skills required for the position. In addition to saying thank you for considering you for the job, you can share a few of your key qualifications.

If you're feeling nervous, you can make a list of points you want to mention ahead of time.

Always start by saying who you are (use your full name), the position you interviewed for, and when you met. You can also mention anything you forgot to say during the interview. 

Follow-Up Phone Message Example

Hi, Mr. Matherly. This is Janice Burlington. I interviewed for the Customer Service Associate position, and wanted to thank you for taking the time to meet with me yesterday.

I am very interested in the position. Please don't hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions or there's any additional information I can provide. You can reach me at 555-555-5555. Thanks again, and I hope to hear from you soon.

Key Takeaways

Always say thank you after an interview: It's your single most important post-interview action. 

Send your email or letter ASAP: Don't delay. Aim to send a letter within 24 hours of the interview. Send a thank-you to every interviewer. 

Reinforce your qualifications: As well as saying thanks, use your letter to show why you are a good candidate for the position.