The Art Of The Professional Follow-Up


Knowing how to follow-up after an interview can be key to determining if you progress on to the next step in the hiring process.

If you’re not the most assertive person, you may be afraid to reach out post-interview! Here are some important steps to follow that can help make the process less intimidating.

Organize details

Often job descriptions will outline how or if they would like you to follow-up.

Some jobs will state that only qualified applicants will be contacted, and will strictly outline not to follow-up. Make sure you make note of these things as you are sending out applications.

Once you have sent out a follow-up, make sure to make note of a response you have received. This will be crucial in knowing when to follow-up again, or knowing the job status. There is nothing worse than following up when you’ve already heard that a position is closed.

Follow-up with the appropriate person

Just like when you apply for a job, it’s important that your follow-up be directed to the right person.

If you applied to a general HR email, you can try following up to that email, but chances are you won’t hear back. Try and find the exact person that would be in charge for hiring for that particular position.

If you apply via LinkedIn, often you will be able to see who posted the job which will help identify the right person to follow up with.

Know the platform

How should you be following up?

If a position specifically states “no phone calls”, follow-up with email.

Email is generally a safer and less-invasive bet anyways, as it allows for the hiring manager to reply back in their own time – and avoids creating an awkward situation.

You don’t want to catch someone off guard or annoy them by not following instructions that were clearly laid out in the first place.

If you have a more casual relationship with someone involved in the hiring process (but not the key decision-maker), you may want to consider using a social media platform (like Twitter) to touch base.

Send the right message

Not knowing what to share in a follow-up message is a common reason for opting-out.

Don’t over-think it! If you’re following up on an application, keep your message brief and inquire politely about the opportunity you’ve applied to. Reiterate your interest and ask if there have been any new developments in the hiring process.

If you’re following up on an interview, it’s ok to go into more detail! Make sure to share that you appreciated the opportunity to connect, and bring up a few key discussion topics. Close by adding that you look forward to hearing about the hiring process soon.

Let it be and give it time

There is a fine line between following up and annoying human resources by being too persistent.

You’ll be contacted if you are a promising candidate, so imagine your follow up as just a confirmation of interest and an opportunity to (hopefully) gain more information about your application status.

If you don’t hear back from the hiring manager, don’t take it personally.

While you may be disappointed that your carefully-crafted application didn’t get a response, letting go of your disappointment is the only way to move forward.

If the position is taken down and you still haven’t heard back after a few weeks, it’s safe to say they are not interested.

How do you personalize your follow-up emails or phone calls? Let us know in the comments!