Interview Follow-Up Best Practices for Returners

So you’ve spent a considerable amount of time in refining your resume, you’ve landed that coveted interview for the job that will kick-off your return to work journey, and you feel like you’ve aced it! You should be getting your offer any time now. But as the days go by, turning into a week, or maybe two with no response, you might begin to question if your interview actually went as well as you thought. What are your next steps? Should you chalk it down to an unsuccessful attempt and move on to other opportunities? 

Instead of waiting around to hear back from your employer, being proactive is the best approach when it comes to interviewing in order to improve your odds of being called back for a second round, and perhaps even landing the job. The team at Women Back to Work has a few best practices for you to keep in mind when it comes to following up after your interview.


  • Send a Thank-you note: A well written thank-you note is a must after you finish your interview. As a rule of thumb, reaching out to your interviewer later the same day is best, and wait no longer than a day to send your thank-you. Make sure to get titles and contact information of all the individuals who interviewed you and sincerely thank them for taking time out from their day to meet with you. Express your interest in the job once more; and emphasize why you would be a good fit for the role. Ask what the next steps are, and if they require anything further from you. This would be a good time to add anything that you may have missed during the course of your interview. Keep the email brief and to-the-point, and the tone positive. You want to convey eagerness without appearing desperate.


  • Connect on social media: Once you’ve sent your follow-up email, it is a good idea to connect with the interviewing team on LinkedIn. Make sure your own profile is up to date and presentable before you do so. Connecting on LinkedIn gives you an additional touch-base with your potential employer, and can help you stay on their radar.


  • Notify your references: Having solid references who can vouch for your professional experience and work ethic is essential to a well-rounded resume. It is a good idea to get their consent and check if they would be willing to endorse you before you put them on your resume. No one likes to be caught off guard, so make sure you send your references a reminder that your potential employer would be likely reaching out to them via phone or email. This will allow them the time to formulate their answers in a way that will do justice to your resume, and improve your chances for success. Give them a brief overview of the job that you are applying to, and any points on your work experience that you might want them to highlight. 


  • Check-in again: If some time has gone by after you sent your thank you note, and you haven’t heard from your interviewing team, you may be beginning to feel a bit despondent. Do not be afraid to check in once more, and simply think of it as part of the process. A quick, professional email reminder to convey your availability and interest will suffice. Be patient; and remember- interview timelines can vary depending on the industry or the size of the company. You may find that the process is quicker in small to mid-size companies, whereas it could take you a while before you hear back while interviewing with large global organizations.


  • Stay connected: In the time following your interview you may be anticipating and hoping for the favorable news that the team thought you were a great fit; and wants to hire you for the role. If, however, things don’t go as well as you had hoped, and the team declines to bring you on board, you are sure to feel disappointed. While you personally deal with the emotions that follow, staying connected and on good terms with the employer might prove valuable to you in the future. Take this in your stride, and don’t forget to thank them once again for their time and effort. Treat this as an addition to your growing professional network, and a resource that you might be able to tap into at a later time.