Author: Larry Medina (Head of Career Services, Alumni & Corporate Relations) at ESSEC Asia-Pacific
This week, I will discuss how you should follow-up after an interview. The way you follow-up after an interview can impact the final decision, especially if it is a close one between you and another candidate. There are two types of follow-up: firstly, a "Thank you" email; and finally, a polite and professional "Chaser".
“Thank you” email
At a minimum, I recommend that you send a nice and concise "Thank you" email after the interview. Remember to personalize the thank you email and refer to specific items.
A "Thank you" email will have less impact if it looks like a template. It is best to send the thank you email within 24 hours of the interview, while the memory of the discussion is still fresh in the mind of the interviewer.
It creates a positive impact because it shows both appreciation and interest. You can also use it to very briefly clarify if you feel that one of your answers was not clear. This shows awareness and can be a positive way to clear doubts, especially if the rest of the interview went well.
For some roles and some companies, you may not have the contact information for the interviewer.
I'd still recommend that you send a “Thank you” email. Even if you do not have the interviewer's contact information, you can send the message to the HR contact and ask them to convey your appreciation.
Professional “Chaser” email
Now, I would like to discuss a trickier question: Should you send a chaser if you have not received an update or response? First, you should ask, at the end of the interview, when you might expect a response.
There is no hard and fast rule, but in general, it is OK to send a "Chaser" email one week after the date that the company said that they would respond.
The message should be polite and professional. There are many reasons that you have not received a response; a polite and professional “Chaser” email asking about the status will demonstrate your understanding and interest in the role.
If you do not get a response to your first “Chaser” email, should you send a second? There are some cultural differences depending on the country, but for Singapore and many other countries, you should not send too many chasers.
Sending one more chaser is probably OK, but I recommend that you stop there. Unfortunately, some companies choose not to give a final response to close the process. However, it is also annoying and possibly damaging to your reputation to continue to chase.
To recap, you should follow-up on an interview with a "Thank you" email if possible. It can leave a positive impression that can be helpful, especially if the decision is close for the hiring manager.
You can also send one "Chaser" email, two maximum, if you do not receive a response from the company promptly. Please remember that chasing too aggressively can damage your reputation.
Larry Medina is the Head of Career Services, Alumni & Corporate Relations at ESSEC Asia-Pacific Business School. For more career tips, follow #careertipswithlarry. Read previous tips from this series.