Following Up After the Interview

March 2024
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Have you ever walked out of an interview feeling like you nailed it in every way? There is nothing quite like that glow of confidence. You displayed your skills with enthusiasm, answered every unexpected question with certainty, and maybe you even cracked a well-received joke or two. Sure, take a bow and text your mom — you’ve earned it! 

The show doesn’t end there because it’s now time for the encore. What, pray tell, would that entail? Well, it’s not dancing across a stage to the latest hit song. Everything you do from this moment onward is still being closely assessed by hiring managers. 

Your interview follow-up is what seals the deal in a subtle and strategic way that can turn a good interview into a job offer. If you’re worried about seeming annoying or even desperate, then fear not. There is a delicate way of approaching post-interview communication. The key is to blend appreciation, professionalism and just the right amount of eagerness. 

Write a thank-you note.

First, within 24 hours of your interview, be prompt and send a thank-you email to your interviewer. In the email, express your gratitude for being given the opportunity to have a conversation about their hiring need. 

Reiterate your continued interest in the position. Also, mention something specific from the discussion that highlights your qualifications. 

In your follow-up email, and in any communications afterward, be professional and concise. Try to focus on key points and avoid unnecessary details. You also want to politely inquire about any next steps, as well as the timeline for the decision-making process. Express your eagerness to move forward in the hiring process and put a bow on that package — you’re done!

There are a few things you definitely should avoid in your thank-you note, such as any assumptions about starting work, making negative remarks about a former employer, or being overly familiar. Another thing to avoid is being too general, so be mindful to tailor every thank you email that you send.

Connect on LinkedIn.

If you haven’t already, then this would be a great time to connect with the interviewer on LinkedIn. When you send the connection request, include a brief, personalized message. Just a sentence is fine, because the preview text will usually get cut off from view unless the reader clicks to expand it, anyway. 

Confirm your interest.

Now, let’s say the expected time period has passed. If you don’t receive a response — feedback, a decision, or (hopefully) next steps — then this is a great moment to send a polite, composed follow-up. In this note, reiterate your interest in the role and the company. Ask if there is any additional information that you can provide and let them know that you’d be happy to engage in another round if needed. Remember to always express your thanks for being considered. 

Remain professional.

I’ve said it before, but I do want to stress that remaining professional is critical. The PR profession is closely interconnected, so work to maintain a gracious and mature tone in all your communications with interviewers. Whether you receive a positive or negative response, aim to take their feedback in stride. Every interview is a learning experience. You want this person to remember you positively, and you want them to think of you for future opportunities.

Be authentic.

Allow your authenticity to shine in your interview conversations, thank-you notes and follow-up emails. These moments are strategic moves in the job hunt, and every interaction is an opportunity to leave a positive impression. You may not get an offer, but at the very least, you have successfully expanded your network. 

Best of luck after the interview and may your next follow-up email be the prelude to a new chapter in your professional journey! 

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