How to Follow Up After a Job Interview

You just completed your first interview, and at the end of the interview the employer told you how their hiring process works. Now, you wait. During this waiting period, there are a few ways that you can follow up without coming across as overly eager or pushy.

Send a Thank-You Email After the Interview

While there are those that believe the act of sending a thank you email after an interview is dying, it can still be an incredibly effective way of making you stand out. You probably already said thank you during your interview, so use the thank you email to reflect on the interview. Point out something said during the interview that you thought was very interesting. Was there information shared during the interview that further convinced you that you’re the one for the job? Use the thank you email as an opportunity to communicate your interest in the job, and why you’re a great match. Here’s a template to get you started:

Dear [First Name],

Thank you for meeting with me to discuss the [Job Title] role at [Company Name]. This position sounds like exactly the type of job I’m seeking, and I’m confident that my experience with [List relevant experience] would make me a great fit.

I’m happy to answer any additional questions you may have. I look forward to hearing from you about next steps in the interview process. Thanks again for your time!

Best regards,

[Your Full Name]
[Your contact info]

If you’re going to send a thank you email, try to reply to the most recent correspondence rather than composing a brand new email. Your thank you is more likely to be read if you retain the existing email thread.

Lastly, make sure you don’t wait too long. Aim to send your thank you email within a couple days. On the other hand, don’t send it too quickly. A thank you note sent just a couple hours after an interview might signal that you didn’t spend time to actually reflect.

Make a Follow-Up Phone Call After the Interview

If you’ve sent a thank you email and a week has gone by without a word, consider giving them a call. During your first interview, the interviewer will likely give you an idea of when you should hear back from them, but if that day has come and gone, it is perfectly acceptable to make a call. Calling any time sooner than that could be taken as a sign of impatience. Before you start dialing, spend some time making a few considerations.

  1. Are you calling during business hours?
  2. Are you calling during what are commonly lunch hours? Chances of connecting decrease when calling between 11 am to 1 pm.
  3. Prepare a bulleted list of talking points you want to make sure to cover.
  4. Prepare a message script in case the call goes to voicemail.

The more that you prepare for the call, the more likely it will be a positive experience for both parties. In your bulleted list, make sure you cover the basics:

  • State your full name
  • Tell them the position that you interviewed for and when you interviewed
  • Tell them that you are calling to see if there is any feedback from the interview
  • Make sure you are speaking with enthusiasm and with a positive tone

You’ve reintroduced yourself and you’ve explained why you’re calling. Now, let them do the speaking. Have a pen and paper handy to notate everything they tell you. In most cases, because recruiters and hiring managers receive hundreds of applications, it might turn out that they just need a bit more time before getting back to you. If that is the case, thank them for their time and tell them that you look forward to speaking again soon.

You might also find out that they decided to move forward with another candidate, and failed to notify you. If this is the case, ask them to give you some feedback on how you could have done better during the interview, or why they went with another candidate. While receiving this news could be disheartening, remember to maintain your optimistic and positive tone. The interviewer will make note of how you deal with rejection. Let them know that you are still interested and ask that they keep you in mind if the position or a similar one becomes available again.


Progressive is committed to providing job seekers across our industries with access to expert staffing and recruitment knowledge, and the tools to get ahead. Contact us to learn more about how you can get the support you need in your job search.

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