How To Follow Up On A Job Application

The job market is strong, recruiters are busy, so your ability to follow up and check in with the right attitude is a critical skill when you’re looking for a job. The way you follow through could be a make-or-break interaction point in the process. If you’re too eager or pushy, you could alienate an employer. But at the same time, you don’t to fade away or be forgotten.

So what are we dealing with..

The need for follow up is influenced by the job market and the extent to which recruiters are stressed, strained and overextended. 65% of recruiters say their job is more stressful today than it was a year ago and 81% of talent acquisition professionals say attracting top talent has become more challenging in the past year. Perhaps based on recruiters’ busyness, candidates aren’t receiving responses as they wish. 90% of people say they’ve been ghosted and 73% say they’ve lost faith in using recruiters to source a job (poll by Monster). However, despite the stress that recruiters and hiring managers maybe under, it’s necessary to endure—reaching out, checking in and staying engaged in pursuit of the job.

Not sure if you should follow up? Generally, you should. Unless the application instructions have directed you otherwise, it’s typically acceptable to follow up about one or two weeks following your application. But how you follow up is critically important. Keep in mind if the hiring professional hasn’t reviewed your application yet, your note could be their first impression of you.  You’ll need to be professional and ensure your message is high quality. You can “inquire about the status of your application” or say you’re “checking in” or “following up.” Avoid jargon!

You’ll also want to be positive, expressing your continued interest in the position. You want to communicate confidence, but also gratitude for their time and their support. If your message has a tone that the hiring leader owes you something or hasn’t followed up adequately, it will be a turn off. Be firm and assertive, without being pushy or presumptuous.

When you’re checking in, address your note to a specific person, if possible. In addition, make your message easy for them. Do this by including a clear subject line and keeping your note brief. Remind them of the job you’re applying for and include just a bit about yourself and your qualifications. And of course, ensure your note is free of errors or typos. Include an offer to provide any additional information they may need, and invite them to contact you. You’re also wise to demonstrate empathy by acknowledging they’re busy and demonstrating knowledge of the process. With these, you’ll also build credibility. Ultimately, you want your follow up to demonstrate who you are and raise the likelihood the person would want to keep interacting with you.

Ultimately, checking in on an application can be tough, because it can feel like reaching out blindly in the dark. But it will be worth it to keep yourself top-of-mind for recruiters and to demonstrate your commitment, interest and follow through—all of which will set you apart for the job.

Other News