Job searching can be challenging. There are a lot of parts to it, and sometimes it can be a struggle to keep up with everything needed of you as a job applicant. If you’ve applied, after looking at the company’s website and scouring the job description, you might wonder what the next steps are.
If you’ve found a job you’re excited about, you might wish there was an easier way to see how things are progressing. This could lead you to wonder how to follow up on a job application. Unfortunately, some people never hear back from companies they send applications to. Others might not know if they have a chance until weeks after applying.
Since all businesses are different and have a unique hiring method, giving a simple answer to how to follow up on a job is a bit challenging. However, we’ve done all the research needed to ensure you are on the right track. Next, we’ll discuss whether you should follow up, when to do so, how to do so, and even provide some samples to help you.
Is Following Up on a Job Application OK?
The first question you might have is whether it’s appropriate to follow up on a job application. And the answer to this is a resounding yes. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to know where you are in the hiring process or whether a job interview is in your future.
In fact, many career advice experts recommend that you should follow up for several reasons:
- Waiting around without hearing back can be stressful, but following up on an application makes you feel proactive. It can cut down on some of the anxiety associated with job hunting.
- When you choose to follow up, it shows how excited you are about the job. Sure, a company wants someone who has experience and qualifications. But it certainly doesn’t hurt to show your motivation and passion.
- It gives you a chance to show your value. You can reiterate your experience and qualifications to someone at the company. If you have skills that go beyond your resume, this is the time to pull those out and put them into action.
- It also can give you insight into how long you need to expect to wait to find out whether you got the job or not. Without making a call or sending out an email, you could be waiting and worrying for weeks or months on end. Ask about what steps are coming up next and be prepared for them.
When it comes down to it, it’s better to contact someone and ask about a job application than to do nothing but worry about it. Learn a bit about what is happening and when you can expect to hear back. You’ll breathe easier and be able to focus on other things in your life in the meantime.
When to Follow Up on a Job Application
Different people will give unique answers when job seekers ask about the right time to follow up on a job application. However, one survey provided to members of human resources gives insight into what is the best time to ask about your chances of getting the job posting you applied for.
Assuming the hiring manager has your contact information and can reach out to you, most people responded that you should follow up between one and three weeks after applying. Forty-three percent fell into this category, with another 30% saying to wait at least two weeks but no more than three.
The remaining respondents included 19% who said inquire in under a week and 8% who said wait at least three weeks. The most important thing to take from this is that 0% said you should not follow up. So, consider those answers when you contact the employer. And make sure you send out a nice thank you email once you know more.
So, in most cases, somewhere between one and two weeks after applying is ideal for a follow-up conversation. This gives the business time to look over your resume and cover letter and understand how you’d fit in the office. However, keep in mind that there can be exceptions.
For example, let them know if you’ve received an offer at another company but would prefer to work for them if given a chance. Even if it’s been less than a week, this lets them know the situation and determine whether to hire you quickly to avoid missing out.
Of course, sometimes it goes the other way. That’s why it’s also essential to understand how to turn down a job offer if that’s something you ever need to do.
How to Follow Up on a Pending Job Offer
Knowing that it’s okay to follow up on a job application (and when to do so), the next thing to consider is the best manner to approach someone about the situation. There are several options here and the one you choose will depend on your preferences and priorities.
Let’s go over your options and you can decide which is suitable for you in this situation.
1. Make a Phone Call
Assuming you have access to a phone number for the company, you could decide to call to ask about your job application. This benefits from making the call on your terms and speaking to someone immediately. Check if a phone number is on the job description to be sure you get through to the right person.
If you applied in a way where no number is provided, visit the company website. This often offers a phone number or email for the hiring manager. If all else fails, you can speak with someone at the main desk and tell them who you want to talk with. Just make sure you know what to say and how to say it (or check out the script below for some help).
2. Send Out an Email
Those who prefer to gather their thoughts, look over them, and reconsider wording before sending should choose to send an email rather than making a call. Make sure to be polite and explain how you are interested in the position and want to know more about the timeline for hiring.
If you choose to go with an email, make sure to keep it short so you aren’t wasting anyone’s time. When possible, send the email directly to the hiring manager, so it gets to them instead of languishing in some central email for the company. You’ll find email templates below you can follow to make sure it’s done right.
3. Contact the Employer on Social Media
Your third option is to connect via social media – usually through a company LinkedIn profile. This is the best option if you don’t have a phone number or email address for a hiring manager, but you can find their name. You can contact them through a professional social media platform that revolves around employment.
For those who know someone already in the company, let them know that you have sent in an application there. This might give you easier access to the hiring manager to find out whether your resume has been looked at. It might even get your application pushed along farther into the process.
6 Steps to Writing a Follow Up Email After Application
If you’re ready to make a job application follow-up email, the steps below will get you through the process. This starts with finding the right person to contact and goes through to make sure an email is in their inbox so you can get a reply.
Step #1: Wait at Least a Week
When it comes to how to follow up after applying for a job, the first step is to wait. While you might be excited to get things moving and find out if you get the position, the hiring manager has a lot to do. Therefore, waiting for one to two weeks after turning in your application is considered courteous.
Step #2: Make Sure You Contact the Right Person
For your job follow-up email, make sure you have the correct contact information for the hiring manager. You can check the job description, look on the company website, or speak with any connections you might have to the company. LinkedIn can also be an excellent place to find emails from some companies.
Step #3: Be Clear But Keep It Brief
Any follow-up email after applying should be short and to the point. You don’t want to take up too much time when the manager is doing other things. Also, since you’ve already turned in an application and resume, the follow-up is primarily a way to remind a manager that you’d be a good choice for their team. So try to stick to three or fewer short paragraphs when you communicate through email.
Step #4: Mention Your Interest in the Position
After you fill in the recipient’s email address and type up a subject line, the next step is to remind the manager how interested you are in the job position. Then, write out a short statement talking about the application you have already sent in, and make sure to note that you are very interested in the position.
Step #5: List Some of Your Qualifications
Next on your follow-up job application email, note a few of your qualifications that make you an excellent choice for the job. For example, you could write about your certifications or experience that makes you competitive. Alternatively, speak about some of the skills you are most proficient in that relate to the position.
Step #6: Thank the Email Recipient
The last part of the email should simply thank the person reading for their attention and time. Then, you can ask them about the next steps, such as scheduling an interview or providing reference information. Make sure you offer your contact information so it’s easy for the hiring manager to get back in touch with you.
If you follow the steps above, you now know how to write a follow-up email for a job. It might seem like a stressful proposition the first time you do it, but it only gets more accessible from there.
3 Job Application follow up Email Samples
Not sure how to write the perfect email? That’s okay! Below you’re sure to find a sample follow-up letter for a job application status that works for your needs. Keep in mind that you can tailor each template to your own style and personality. The email templates simply give you an excellent place to start when penning your own sample follow-up letter for a job application status.
Try this job follow up email sample when you want to reach out to a hiring manager about your application:
Subject: Inquiring about [Position] at [Company Name] application
Hello [Hiring Manager’s Name],
I hope your day is going well. I am contacting you to follow up on the [Position] I applied for on [Date]. I wanted to share my continued interest in the position and hope to have the opportunity to speak to you about it soon.
My skills and experience would make me a great addition to the team. I especially believe my [Skill or Experience] would be helpful. Let me know if there is any additional information that I can provide to you.
I am looking forward to speaking with you and appreciate your consideration of my application.
If you are sending a follow-up email after sending a resume and speaking with an HR member, consider this email:
Subject: follow up about my application at [Company Name] for [Position]
Dear [HR Manager’s Name],
This is [Your Name]. I recently sent in an application for the [Position] at [Company Name] and wanted to follow up on my application’s status.
I am very interested in working for [Company Name] and believe my skills would make me an asset to the team because of [Skills or Experience]. I’ve worked in similar positions in the past and know I would do a great job in the role.
If you have any questions or need other information, please contact me so I can provide it to you. Thanks for your time, and I hope to speak with you further in the future.
The last job application follow-up email sample to help you is below. Again, you can use this with a potential employer or a recruiter.
Subject: Application for [Role] at [Company Name]
Hello, my name is [Your Name]. I am reaching out to you to follow up on my application for [Company Name]’s [Position] on [Date].
I continue to be excited about the potential of joining the team and being a part of its success. I think my [Skills or Experience] make me an excellent candidate for the job and hope to speak with you about it in the future.
Please reach out if you have any questions or need information I can provide to you. Thanks for considering me! I look forward to talking to you again soon.
What to Say When Calling After Applying for a Job: 4 Tips to Follow Over the Phone
If you decide to make a call, you might wonder what to say when following up on a job application. The good news is that this is similar to the information you’d put in an email as described above. So, should you call after applying for a job? Sure! It can be a great option if you’re confident about your speaking voice.
But before you do, let’s look at a few tips.
Reread the Job Posting
Before you look to move forward in the application process, make sure you reread the job description. Look at timelines and dates that might be mentioned to see if you even need to make a call. For example, if there is an application window and it’s over, it might be better to apply elsewhere.
Follow Company Requirements
Even if you know the hiring manager’s name, have their phone number, and are ready to dial – don’t do it if the job description asks you not to. This will often frustrate someone and make it less likely for you to get the job. It shows you either didn’t read the description or decided the rules don’t apply to you.
Choose the Right Day
While you can make a follow-up call any day of the week, some are better than others. For example, Monday is often best to avoid since most people are just getting back into things and tend to be busy. Fridays can also be bad since many people clean up loose ends and then head out of the office.
Know What You Plan to Say
Before you call, have an idea of what you’d like to say. Consider any questions you have and what topics are important to you. Being prepared is helpful to ensure the call is quick, easy, and leaves you without lingering questions. Be professional and polite at all times while on the phone.
Sample Follow Up Phone Call Script
Below is a short script that will get you through a phone call with a potential employer:
“Hi, my name is [Your Name], and I’m an applicant for [Position] at [Company Name].”
Give the person time to respond and follow what they say with an appropriate sentence or two. Something similar to the script below will often work well:
“I wanted to check in and be sure you received my application and see if there’s additional information I can provide. I don’t want to take up too much of your time or interrupt, though!”
Let them speak and they’ll let you know if they have enough time to talk. Then, if the conversation continues, bring up the questions you decided on earlier. But make it short, be sure to thank them at the end, and let them take the lead throughout the conversation.
How to Follow Up on a Job Application: 3 Extra Tips to Keep in Mind
At this point, you should be prepared to follow up about a job application for a position you are interested in. First, however, we want to provide a bit of additional information to make sure you impress the hiring team.
1. Consider Company Culture – When you talk to someone after applying, make sure you show you’d fit the team culture. You can often learn about culture and challenges by looking over the company blog and perusing their LinkedIn page. If you know more than the typical applicant, that’s a point in your favor.
2. Show Your Value – If you notice a blog post from the company talking about how they want to expand into a particular market, talk about how you once did exactly that with your last company. Find a way you can stand out in a good way. It lets them see you as a member of the team.
3. Get a Little Personal – When possible, share something personal with the hiring manager. LinkedIn is an excellent place to find something you have in common. Whether you like the same movie genre, do the same type of workouts, or just both like Thai food, it’s something that can connect you.
We also want to take a moment here to talk about how to ask about a job application status after an interview. Once you’ve gone through the interview process, you probably want to know right away whether you nabbed the job. Then, as before, you can call, email, or reach out on social media to get answers.
Wait at least a week to reach out and politely ask where you stand. You can even adapt our templates above and use them for your emails and calls after you’ve managed to score an interview.
Key Takeaways on How to Follow Up with a Recruiter
Whether you found a position on a job board, a job listing on LinkedIn, or through a friend, applying is only the first step. The job hunt often leaves you wanting answers about where you stand in the process. Our best advice is to wait at least a week and then inquire about where things stand.
The worst that can happen is finding out you aren’t moving forward. The best might be that you’re coming in for an interview or they want you for the position. Even if a follow-up doesn’t lead to the position, you have new skills you can use as you move on to your next job hunt. Good luck!