Use these 6 Steps to Increase your Impact after an InterviewAdmin
Your behavior and response following an interview can be as influential to a hiring manager as the interview itself. The communication and interaction you have with your interviewer further illustrates what kind of employee you will be. Here are some recommendations from Bradley recruiters to help you make a lasting impression even after the interview is over.
Send a thank you note…ASAP!
We have had candidates ask if a thank you note is really necessary. The short answer is YES. Time is of the essence, so send them as soon after the interview as possible to ensure that you are still fresh in the mind of the interviewer. Sending emails to thank your interviewer/s demonstrates that you are appreciative and courteous. This goes a long way to enhancing your likeability. It is also a chance for you to show them that you are excited about the position and are seriously considering a future with the company. Not all hiring managers are of the same opinion when it comes to thank you notes. In a Monster.com blog article, Sharon Siegel, a recruiter and career coach in the New York City area says “If someone meets the credentials and has a great interview, we’re not going to change our minds on making an offer if a thank you isn’t received. On the other side, if someone has a terrible interview or would not be able to do the job, sending a beautiful thank you doesn’t make me change my mind.” Ken Goldman, a New Jersey-based communication training company partner weights in for the other side. He says “If you’re not going to take the extra steps to get the job, what will you be like six months in? I think it reflects poorly on the candidate.”
Since you don’t know how he or she feels about this topic, you should always err on the side of making that extra effort. Sending a thank you may not affect the final decision; but not sending one could convey a stronger negative message.
An example thank you email might look like something like this:
Dear (Name of the interviewer),
I wanted to take a moment to thank you for allowing me the opportunity to interview for the position with your company. It was a pleasure to meet you. After our interaction, I am even more excited about the possibility of joining your team. I know that I have a great deal to offer the company, and I believe the job would be an excellent fit for my career path. I wish you much luck in finding the best fit for the position, and continued success.
Lay the groundwork for follow up
As the interview is coming to a close, the interviewer often asks you if you have any questions. This is a good time to ask them about their timeline to fill the position. You may phrase it something like this “Do you have an idea of when you will be making a decision about the position?” The waiting game following an interview can be agonizing. Asking this question not only indicates your interest in the opportunity, it sets the stage for you to make an inquiry as to the status of the position if you don’t hear back within the timeframe provided. An article by The Muse indicates that while many job seekers are reluctant to follow up after an interview, it is crucial to stay top of mind. You just have to go about it tactfully. A short, but to-the-point email is best. For example:
I hope you’re having a great week. I know you mentioned that you would be making a decision as to the (position) this week, so I just wanted to follow up. I’m sure you’re quite busy. I’m eager to hear how things are progressing, and I look forward to any update you can provide. I’m happy to provide any additional information from my end that may help facilitate the decision process. Thank you.
This type of follow up is not intrusive or pushy, and communicates interest. Even if you are not the right fit for this position, making a great impression on the hiring manager, recruiter or HR manager will help to foster a connection that could lead to other opportunities in the future.
Go a step beyond spellcheck
Typos, incorrect use of words and improper tenses is a sure-fire way to have the otherwise courteous thank you (or any other follow-up) blow up in your face. Even if you consider yourself a great writer, you should have someone proof-read your follow-up correspondence before you send it. Our recruiters have cautionary tales about several candidates who scoffed at their offer to proofread a thank you email, only to have that candidate send an email with an incorrect name, or a misspelled word. Cover every base and have a trusted source read your email before you send it. If writing is definitely not your strong point, consider employing a friend or a recruiter to help you. Sample thank you notes can be found online, and veteran recruiting firms such as ours will help Bradley Staffing coach candidates through their interview process from the initial interview until the final job offer.
If the silence is killing you
If the hiring manager told you that you should be hearing from them on a specific date, and that date has come and gone, you may wish to send a follow up email or make a quick phone call to find out status. It is possible that you haven’t heard back because they offered the position to someone else. It is also possible that he or she just got busy. You may be about to jump out of your skin with anticipation of the results, but make sure to keep the tone of the email or call bright and positive. If he or she has not made a decision yet, your demeanor can have an impact on the outcome. Make it a positive one by The Muse recommends including something you spoke about in the interview; for example, the organization’s need for someone with Adobe Suite experience and an example of something you created using that design software.
When you didn’t exactly ace it
If you feel like you didn’t exactly blow them away at your interview or maybe the interview left you feeling like you are not 100% qualified. You can use the follow-up to provide some additional information or resources that might help you regain the interest of the hiring manager. Consider a brief note of thanks with an attached letter of recommendation, a certification or award that you may not have included in your resume, or a class or webinar you attended recently that relates to your job responsibilities. A Monster.com article recommends briefly noting a time when you were placed in a situation where you didn’t have the experience, but you took steps to educate and prepare yourself.
Don’t dwell on the negative
If in the end, you are not the employer’s choice for the position, don’t take it too hard. If the hiring manager doesn’t provide feedback when they give you the news, ask him or her if there was anything you could’ve done differently. Our clients often find themselves in a situation where they have to make a difficult decision between two stellar candidates. Sometimes that deciding factor is something you have little or no control over. Learn from the experience and don’t let it affect your job seeking momentum. Look at each interview as a new and exciting opportunity, and all of your follow-up interaction as an extension of that opportunity.
In conclusion, your follow-up communications should always be brief, courteous, to-the-point and focused on the needs of the company. Avoid using “I” too often, in the interview, and with any subsequent interactions. Use language and statements that emphasize your ability to solve a problem or fill a need for that hiring manager. Demonstrating that you have the best interest of the organization in mind will help position you ahead of other similarly qualified candidates.
Bradley Staffing Group is a full-service staffing firm based in Wayne, PA. We are committed to matching A-level talent with best-in-class businesses. Our knowledgeable and well-trained staff brings a combined 70+ years of staffing experience to our clients and candidates alike. http://bradleystaffinggroup.com/job-seekers/