Interview Follow Up Etiquette: 3 Tips to Leave a Good Impression
Interview follow up etiquette can make or break your chances of being hired. Imagine this: a hiring manager is torn between Candidate A and Candidate B. They are equally qualified on paper and in areas such as cultural fit. After interviews, Candidate A sends a thank you email or note, but Candidate B does nothing. The advantage now shifts noticeably to Candidate A because he or she has shown more manners and more interest in the company. Here are three tips to be a “Candidate A” and leave a good impression after your interviews.
1. Understand the Time Frame
In an ideal world, interviewers would let you know the time frame; for example, that they are interviewing five people in the first round and expect to have three chosen by this Friday for second-round interviews. And some interviewers do this! Many don’t, so go ahead and ask questions such as what the next steps are. This knowledge lets you plan your etiquette strategy.
2. Say Thank You
A thank you email is normally a better bet than a physical thank you note. Keep the timeline and the company culture in mind as you decide which way to go. For example, longer timelines and older-fashioned companies that still love paper may appreciate a thank you note more than an email. Avoid making thank you phone calls.
Keep your expression of thanks to a few paragraphs. Discuss your appreciation for the interviewer’s time, talk about your interest in the role and your main selling points. If the interviewer expressed interest in seeing some of your materials such as a presentation or portfolio, include them.
3. Avoid Costly Mistakes
Interviewers love to see enthusiasm—but not too much! As touched on earlier, avoid making thank you phone calls. Also, interview follow up etiquette dictates that you forget about “dropping by” in person to check in. Also, if your interview was brokered through a staffing agency or a recruitment agency, you usually do not want to directly contact the employer. Ask the agency for clarification if necessary.