The “Do’s & Don’ts” After Your Job Interview

Posted: 10/02/14 | Category: Interviewing Job Search

After a promising job interview, days can seem like eons and your angst can corrode your confidence like a vat of battery acid. It’s critical that you tread lightly in the final stages of the hiring process. Otherwise, you risk undoing all your hard work.

Avoid stepping on any toes by closely following the “do’s and don’ts” after your job interview.

Don’t: Leave the Office without a Plan to Follow Up

Is your job interview coming to a close? Don’t shuffle off without an idea of how to follow up.

Each company has its own hiring etiquette. One might notify you by the end of the week. Another might deliberate for weeks longer. There’s no uniformity, so it’s hard to determine whether your follow up will be perceived as a welcome reminder or the droning buzz of a gnat.

Do: Ask When a Decision Will Be Made

After you’ve thanked your interviewer for the opportunity, be sure to ask the following question:

“When can I expect to hear a decision?” or “When is a good time to check back with you on this opportunity?”

Subtle reminders like this reinforce that you’re still very interested in the job. Moreover, they show you’re willing to take initiative and contact interviewers, if other concerns distract them.

Don’t: Send a Gift

After the interview, it’s customary to send a thank you letter to express your gratitude. Keep it at that. Lavish or even modest gifts can often be interpreted the wrong way.

Even if you learned about the interviewer’s favorite drink or snack or hobby during your face to face, save that tidbit for later. A gift is a more appropriate thank you if you actually earn the job.

Do: Immediately Send Your Thank You Letter

Thank you letters are a given, but the exact timing is paramount. The message needs to go out, by the post or by email, in the first 24 hours.

It’s cordial and sends a reminder that you’re still interested. Whether or not it’ll be a deciding factor between you and another candidate is up for debate. Regardless, it’s a big win for your character.

Don’t: Leave Dozens of Pleading Messages

Here’s a hypothetical situation: the date when your interviewer said you’d hear back comes and goes without a peep from the hiring manager. Do you abandon all hopes about the opportunity? Certainly not. Likewise, don’t take this as open season to leave daily messages.

There are so many internal obligations ebbing and flowing behind the scenes. Hiring managers can get preoccupied by surprise projects just like anyone else. It’s okay to cut them some slack.

Do: Leave a Clear Message with the Right Person

Should you call the interviewer’s direct line to follow up? Should you send out an email? Find out that person’s perform method of communication before you leave the interview and stick to it.

Then, send out a message that goes along these lines:

“Hello [Interviewer’s Name],

Hope all is well over at [Insert Company Name]. I just wanted to send out a friendly reminder that I’m still excited about the position. As per our conversation on [insert date], it seems like your company is an excellent fit for my skill set, aspirations, and personality. Once again, I appreciate the opportunity you’ve given me and I eagerly await your decision.


[Your Name]”

It’s short, reiterates the major points of your interview, and lets your interviewer know you are still as excited as ever.

Don’t: Get Hung Up on One Position

Some opportunities just lead to job search cul-de-sacs. It’s better not to let yourself get hung up on a position. Even if you swear up and down that a job there would be career karma, it’s not worth wasting your time with a fruitless holding pattern. Know when to move on.  

Do: Continue to Apply for Other Jobs

After the interview, don’t just wait. Start applying for other jobs even if this one appears to be in the bag. You never know if a better opportunity will come along while the other company is dragging its heels.

by James Walsh

[Photo Credit]