The tensest part of any job interview isn't during the interview itself – it's when you're waiting to hear back whether you got the job or not. If you've been applying for finance positions like wealth management jobs and investor relations jobs, odds are high that interviews are hard to come by. So when you book one, you always want to make sure you follow up and do whatever possible to keep yourself in the interviewer's mind while they decide who to hire.
For that reason, many job applicants now send follow-up notes and emails to hiring managers after they've completed an interview but before they've heard whether or not they booked the job. Like all practices in the business world, though, there's a right way of doing this, and a wrong way of doing this. We've listed a number of tips – accompanied by quotes from industry experts – below. You should keep them all in mind when you're deciding how to follow up after your next interview.
Ensure you have all the contact information needed to follow up before the interview ends
If you're going to follow up with a hiring manager, you're going to need to ensure you know how to contact them personally. The last thing you want to occur is your follow-up email getting lost in a generic company inbox that nobody ever checks.
"Request a business card from the interviewer," advised Jacqui Barrett-Poindexter, a career and workplace expert at Glassdoor, in a blog post hosted by the U.S. & World News Report. "This ensures you have their most basic contact information, which should include their full name, title, email, phone number, and possibly even business address. When following up, you want to show your attention to detail and respect by addressing the interviewer with their correct title and name."
If you're going to reach out after an interview, do it quickly
A number of the experts quoted here offered the same piece of advice: if you're going to send a note after a job interview, you'd do best to do so quickly. If you send your follow-up days after the interview, your aim will be transparent: your email will seem less like a friendly thank-you and more like a nagging attempt to get an insight on whether or not the meeting was successful for you.
"If you're incredibly lucky," Vicky Oliver, author of a book of job interviews, said to CareerRealism.com. "The interviewer will hit the e-mail back to you [after you've followed up] saying she or he really enjoyed meeting you and – voila! – now you're in the running! These rules apply even if an executive recruiter helped you land the interview."
If you're going to follow up, ask a question or create a reason to do so
You don't want the hiring manager you're contacting to think that you're selfishly checking your own progress. So when you interview, ask what the timeline will be for the company in terms of hiring for the position. Then, if the timeline lapses, or if another job opportunity arises for you, you'll have a ready-made reason to follow-up and get an update on if you're in the running for the job.
"You don't want to pester until you get an answer, but rather keep yourself in [the hiring team's] minds as they make the decision," Allyson Willoughby, senior vice president of people at Glassdoor, explained to Mashable. "A great approach is to ask about their timeline for making a hiring decision before you leave the interview. This will help you to properly time your follow-up attempts. In addition, a quick 'thank you' [email] is always a nice touch."
If the company wants to hire you, they'll hire you – whether you follow up or not
With all this said, applicants should remember that – whether they're applying for high-level executive jobs or entry-level accounting jobs – no business is ever going to forget about someone they interviewed. The follow up is more for the applicant's sake – you can trust that if a business is impressed by your interview, they'll follow up with you even if you don't follow up with them, sooner or later.
"Workplace emergencies happen unexpectedly and all the time, so it's important to follow up a couple of times. But if you hear absolutely nothing, then it's time to move on," Chris Fields, a human resources consultant, explained to Mashable. "Some interviewers are complimentary to avoid confrontation; they tell you what you want to hear. Sometimes it's genuine, but there is no way for you to tell. If the company wants to hire you, they will contact you, whether it happens a week later, a month later or even several months later."