How to follow-up after an interview

Congratulations! You’ve officially completed your first interview with an internship or job position. The hard work is all over now, isn’t it? Not so much. Now that you’ve already spent time preparing for the role and going through the actual interview, it’s time to implement the last steps necessary to leave a great impression.

Here are the five steps on how to follow up after an interview.

Step 1: Send a “Thank you” email.

If you’ve read some of the other articles on interviewing or follow our Instagram, you probably know we are big advocates for sending thank-you emails after an interview. As internship providers, we work with over 1500 global companies closely, and many of them have revealed they are very impressed when a candidate sends a thank you email following their interview. We couldn’t agree more.

Ideally, it would be best to ask what is the best way to follow up at the end of the interview itself. However, if you forget to ask, don’t panic! Here a few steps to take on how to follow up after an interview:

  • Go back and look through your emails – Did your interviewer email you directly? If so then you can send your thank you email there. Often the interviewer may not have been the one who set up the interview.
  • If this is the case, then check out the company’s team page – See if the company has a team page with their employee’s listed on there. If they do, check to see if your interviewers are listed as well as their email address. On the off-chance that their email address isn’t listed then see if you can find it through the company Linkedin page.
  • If your interview was scheduled through a recruiter, ask them – Try giving your recruiter a call or email to see if you can obtain their email from them. If so, when you email them, be sure to note that you have received their email from the recruiter.
  • Try calling the company’s front desk, if all else fails – Tell the receptionist that you recently had an interview and want to send an email to your interviewer for their time.

Once you have the email, be sure to reiterate what was discussed in the interview.

You can also touch again on what your skills and previous experience can bring to the role. From there, it’s also important to talk about your excitement for the job, the company as a whole and your excitement for the opportunity to bring your contributions to the team. You can also ask for feedback, though they may not be able to provide it. If you had multiple interviewers, send each other of them an individual email with different content.

Do not copy and paste the same wording for each interviewer; they will know. Lastly, be sure to send a thank you email after every round of interviews if they are with different people. They will pick up on this and will leave them feeling quite impressed about the extra effort you put into it.

Ensure you send a follow-up email if they asked for additional information

If they asked for you to complete a task or send them additional recommendations, be sure you do so promptly. You do not necessarily need to do this in your thank-you email, but it’s essential to address that you will follow up with the requested information on time in your initial thank- your email. Following this, if discussed, send them a tailor Linkedin request. Similarly to a thank-you email, use the 300 words to thank them for their time and your interest in the role. For your Linkedin message, you want to make sure it’s short, sweet, and straight to the point.

Step 2: Conduct a self-evaluation

Now, that you’ve taken the first take on how to follow up after an interview, it’s time to reflect on your performance. In our opinion, this is the most crucial step. Spend ten minutes thinking about the questions they asked you and how you responded to them. Did you struggle to answer them? If so, why? Note down what about the question tripped you up and how you think you could have better responded to it.

How about the areas you thought you did quite well in? You also want to jot these down as well. Touch on why you believe you excelled in this area. Once you’ve completed this, begin thinking about how you can further improve it and also, how you can highlight it if you have to do additional interviews. You can also spend some time reflecting on the company itself. Did you like them? Why or why not?

By reflecting later on your interview, you will be to see what areas need improvement and what areas you did well in so that you can highlight it more in other interviews. You can then spend time improving and tweaking your responses so that for the next interview, you are an even stronger candidate than the interviewer before. A self-evaluation is especially useful if it’s a multi-round interview process. Ideally, you want to become a stronger candidate as you go through the rounds so that at the end of it, they are left with little doubt about your ability and competency for the role.

Step 3: Keep up the search

Though you may feel that you smash the interview and without a doubt, you got it, it’s best not to get ahead of yourself and begin applying or preparing for other interviews that you may have. This is helpful for a couple of reasons.

  1. You aren’t leaving all your eggs in one basket, so to speak – Even though you may have done exceptionally well in the interview, it’s always best to have a backup plan. So, if on the off chance, you did not receive the role or job position, you know that you already have other interviews set or have been proactive with applying for other opportunities.
  2. If you like the industry, try seeing if any of their competitors are also hiring for a similar role – Again, this step is simply about generating more opportunities for you to get into the industry. You can also use your self-evaluation as preparation for an interview with their competitors. More so, their competitors might be a better fit for you.

It doesn’t hurt to be proactive when it comes to looking at other opportunities even if you did well. It just means more opportunities for you to choose from! As the saying goes, “the more, the merrier!”

Step 4: Be cautious on how frequently you follow-up

Though you may be itching to contact them every day following your interview, it’s best not to do that. As a good rule of thumb, you can send a follow-up email one week after your thank you email and only if they mentioned follow-ups being okay. There is a fine line between over contacting them and appearing desperate and simply just following up. Be aware of where you stand.

On the other hand, the recruiters say “We will be in touch” or mention they will follow-up with you instead. It’s best to hang tight. If you are an excellent candidate, they will follow-up. If it’s been awhile, it’s probably best to restart your job search.

Step 5: Final thoughts

So, now that you’ve done your initial preparation and interview, it’s important to not drop the ball on how to follow after an interview. By taking these extra steps following the interview, it will help reiterate why you are the best person for the role and help eliminate any doubts that they have following your interview.

More so, it’s not only helpful for your recruiter, but it’s also beneficial for you. You can walk away from the experience knowing you did everything you were supposed to do, and you spent some time reflecting on your performance, thus helping you become a stronger candidate in the process.

Don’t forget to share this post!

Julia Hurtado

Julia Hurtado

Having spent an entire summer dedicated to travelling abroad, Julia now focuses on helping other students experience life outside their home country. As an American now working in London, Julia enjoys sharing advice on interning abroad, sipping tea (with 2 sugars, 1 milk please) and reading in her spare time.

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