How to Follow Up by Email After a Job Interview

Days have gone by after your big interview, but you still haven’t heard back from a company. Waiting for updates from a recruiter can be extremely anxious. You don’t have to wait passively. It’s time to act. Follow up!

Sending a follow up email after an interview may affect your chances of employment in both positive and negative ways. A good follow up can help you land a job while a bad one can make a recruiter change their mind. You’ll need to show your interest and enthusiasm about a company without being pushy and annoying.

Let’s see how to write a great follow up email after an interview and what mistakes to avoid.

When to send a follow up email

Don’t write a follow up email described in this article the next day after an interview. Instead, send a thank you note to a recruiter. It’s a great way to show your motivation and provide additional value for a company.

When should you follow up to ask about the updates on your candidacy? Here is the best way to figure it out: During an interview, ask a recruiter when can you expect to hear back from them. Wait for 24 hours after the deadline you agreed on, and you’re good to go with following up.

If you haven’t discussed any deadlines, wait for one business week after an interview before following up. Remember, it takes some time for companies to interview all candidates and make a final hiring decision.

How to make sure a recruiter notices your follow up email

Writing an email usually starts with a Subject line, but not in the case of follow up emails. 

If you previously communicated with a recruiter via email, find the existing thread and write here. This is the best way to draw a recipient’s attention because your follow up email will appear as a part of the previous conversation. This also provides a recruiter with context as they see your earlier messages and can quickly recall you.

If you’re writing to a hiring manager for the first time, here’s how your Subject line may look:

  • Following up — [your name] interview
  • Checking in — [job title] position

How to write a follow up email step by step:

  1. Greet a recruiter by name. Learn more about the best email greetings to use.
  2. If you haven’t sent a thank you note previously, thank a recruiter for their time interviewing you.
  3. Specify the position you’re checking in on and mention the interview date.
  4. Indicate that you’re still interested and excited about the job. If you have any ideas or questions you forgot to ask during the interview, you can include them here.
  5. Ask a recruiter about the updates.
  6. Close the email with polite phrases like “Sincerely” or “Best regards” and sign off with your full name and contact details. 
  7. Proofread the email and double check the recruiter’s name.

Productivity Tip: Our email app Spark lets you set follow up reminders before sending an email. Spark notifies you if you haven’t received a reply after the due date.

Should you mention other interviews or job offers in your follow up email? Imagine, you’re waiting for updates from your dream company, but you also received another offer and have to make a decision till the end of the week. 

“For me, it’s helpful when a candidate indicates that they’re looking for a job actively and have other job offers. In your email, say that you’re still interested in the company you’re writing to. Tactfully mention the deadline you have for making a decision and say it’s important for you to receive an update till that date,” says Anastasiia Martyniuk, a recruiter at Readdle.

What to do if there is still no response

A couple of business days have passed, and you’ve still received no reply from a recruiter. In this case, try to send the second follow up email. Write in the existing thread and keep your message short and simple: 

If you get no reply after the second follow up, writing more emails won’t help. It’s better to wait for some time and move on with your job search. All in all, communication with a company is a two-way process.

Top mistakes to avoid while following up after an interview:

  1. “Wondering if you’ve forgotten about me...” Blaming a recruiter or making them feel guilty won’t encourage them to share the good news with you. Quite the opposite.
  2. “You said you’d get back to me on Monday. It’s already Tuesday!” Drawing extra attention to the missed deadline will just irritate a recruiter. It’s better to make your email polite and friendly rather than demanding. 
  3. Stalking a recruiter. Reaching out to them on Facebook and Instagram or just silently liking their recent pictures to get noticed is definitely a bad idea. If you don’t want to look desperate and annoying, stick to 1-2 communication channels (e.g. email and LinkedIn).
  4. Writing to other people at the company. When you get no reply, it can be tempting to pick an HR manager or another employee and complain to them about an unresponsive recruiter. Don’t do that. This irritates both a recruiter and a person you’re writing to. Focus your efforts on one person, give them time to reply, and write a second follow up if needed. 

The art of following up is a valuable skill in the professional world. We hope our tips will help you write a great follow up email after an interview and receive the good news from a recruiter. 

Want to get email superpowers like follow up reminders and email scheduling? Download Spark for free and become better at email right now.

Maria Henyk Maria Henyk

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