How To Follow Up On A Job Application (5 Email Examples)
Following up on a job application can be a powerful way to ensure that you get an interview. In fact, most jobs are landed by those who go the distance to show that they’re enthusiastic about the position. Wondering how to follow up on a job application?
We’re going to go through the steps required to follow up on your application and give you five sample emails you can use.
Why Following Up Is Good
The reason why following up after your job application is so important is that it makes you stand out. Plain and simple. When hiring managers put job openings up online they receive hundreds or thousands of applications. And getting through all of them is nearly impossible.
When you follow up, you are showing that you are genuinely interested in the position and are willing to initiate a conversation with the company to try and understand what your current status of the job opening is.
The other reason following up is good is that you might learn the job opening has changed. It’s not uncommon for job openings to close but not inform those who applied. Nearly 20% of job openings either get filled or potential close without the applicants knowing that has happened.
Pro fact: Job seekers who link to a comprehensive LinkedIn profile from their resume or job application have a 71% greater chance of landing the interview, says ResumeGo.
Job openings might close for a variety of reasons. But the biggest one is that the company has decided on another route. For example, maybe the company was trying to hire a graphic designer. But instead of hiring decided that working with a freelancer was a better option. They may have still posted the job opening but while receiving applications made this executive decision.
How Many Emails Is Too Many
Before you follow up to your application, it’s important to recognize how many follow up emails are too many. Firstly, it is okay to follow up with your application. But if you send more than two emails, you are probably starting to badger the hiring manager. And that won’t look great.
Keep your emails to roughly one follow up and then another follow up after that if you really don’t hear back. If you are searching for the optimal time to send your follow up email, it’s recommended that you send early on Monday mornings. This is when nearly 65% of the workforce is more active in their email protocols, catching up from Friday and the weekend.
Who Do You Follow Up With
If you submitted an application online, let's say via an online application portal, then you’ll want to use LinkedIn to search for someone in the HR department, particularly someone in talent acquisition or on the talent side. If they don’t show their email address then you’ll need to use tools like Hunter.io to be able to reverse search the email syntax and then give that cold email a shot (a cold email is an unprompted email to someone you don’t have a personal relationship with).
If you submitted an application to someone directly, let's say an email address like firstname.lastname@example.org, then you’ll want to reply back to that email with your follow up. You might not know the name of the person who is fielding the applications through that email address, so it’s best to use one of our templates that’s shorter and more generic.
How Soon Do You Follow Up
Deciding how soon you should follow up on your application once it’s been submitted is a tricky thing. Generally speaking, you should follow up after five business days and seven actual days. If you haven’t heard anything back after fourteen days, then most likely the job opportunity has shifted.
Have your first follow up email ready to go after five working days and then be sure to send your next follow up email three days after that if you haven’t heard a response. That will reach your two email max.
If You Haven’t Heard Back
If you sent a follow up to your application after five business days and your second follow up email three days after that and still haven’t heard anything, then what do you do? Reality is that your application most likely won’t proceed to an interview. Your best bet is to stop trying to push forward on this job opportunity and continue your job search.
It’s a harsh reality that you’ll need to apply to a significant number of jobs and also follow up with those applications. This will mean a considerable amount of work for you. It’s best to manage this process in a spreadsheet, so you can keep track of which companies and positions you applied for and what their status is. The status would be your application being submitted, your application is received, your follow up email is sent and an interview scheduled or not.
Should You Call Them
Contrary to what other articles tell you, you should only call the employer on special occasions. Opportune times to call someone would be if they’ve replied to you and then went silent. Or if you spoke with someone at the company, then submitted your application, then they went silent.
The reason for this is that calling someone without any prompt to doing so will make you seem overly aggressive. That won’t work in your favor. Email is still the best etiquette if you are applying to job opportunity where you don’t have a preexisting established relationship.
Following Up On Your Application In Person
There aren't too many jobs where following up on your job application in person is a good idea. The first thing you need to do before you decide to follow up in person is to understand if this is the type of environment where you can do that. Ideally, this should be a retail setting. Any office setting should not be followed up in person.
Applicable retail settings would be any department stores, sporting good stores or coffee shops. If your job application environment fits in with one of these, then following up in person is okay. Here is how you might be able to do that:
- Pick a time to visit when you know the store is going to have relatively low foot traffic.
- When you arrive at the store, ask to speak with the person that you interviewed with.
- When you speak with the person you interviewed with be sure to greet them nicely. Say it's nice to see them again and that you were in the area.
- During the conversation, ask if they have any updates regarding your job application and express how much you'd like to be part of that environment.
- From here, you'll need to see where the conversation takes you.
At all costs, keep a positive attitude and try to make the visit a slightly social one. Whatever you do, avoid sounding "brute" towards your interviewer. They are busy. But you want to show initiative. And this is a great way to do so.
How To Follow Up (By Email)
Like mentioned above, it’s critical to know if you already have the email of the person who is hiring. This will be someone within the HR (human resources) department or someone with a management or leadership title to their name.
If you don’t have their email, here’s what you should do:
- Go to LinkedIn
- Use the LinkedIn search to search for the company
- Filter by title
- Filter by “HR” or “Human Resources” in the title section
- Find the person who is in charge of hiring
- Use hunter.io to guess their email syntax to send them an email
If you do have their email, here’s what you should do:
- Be sure you wait the appropriate amount of time so that you don’t seem overly aggressive
- Reply back to only the email address they asked you to use for the application (since that’s the professional way to handle this situation)
- If you don’t hear back from them through that email then use hunter.io to guess their personal email address and follow up with your second and final email to that address
Pro tip: Lars Herrem, Group Director at Nigel Wright Group says, "Don't hound the contact's inbox with daily "Checking In" subject lines. Recruiters are judged on their ability to provide prompt correspondence and will keep both the candidate and the company/client in the loop."
5 Sample Follow Up On Your Application Emails To Use
Here are five simple email examples you can copy and paste to use when following up on your job application. Each is generic, impactful and strong enough to source a response if the job opportunity is still open.
Following up on my application. I’d really love the opportunity to get to work with you. Looking forward to speaking with someone on the team.
Thanks so much,
I just saw [recent news prompt or info about the company]. What an exciting time to be at the company. I’d really love to speak with someone regarding my application to [job opportunity].
Looking forward to hearing from you,
Been a few days and I haven’t heard back about the job application. I’m performing a number of interviews but would really hate to miss the opportunity to work at [company]. Looking forward to speaking with someone on the team.
Thank you so much,
Wanted to follow up regarding my application. Let me know if there’s any additional information I can provide to help with the process.
Thank you so much,
Example 5Hi there,
Sorry for the fast reply to my application, I’m just so excited to get the opportunity to work with your company and team. Did you receive my application?
Thanks so much,
If you can, asking questions in the email might stir a response. But don’t count on it being the thing that will get you the interview. The hiring manager might simply reply back and say, “We received your application.” And that might be the end of the conversation. Being as helpful as possible and prompting to provide more insight into your experience, education and application will make you seem more professional and will be better received by the HR department. It will come across as collaborative instead of pushy or aggressive.
Remember to continue onward with your job search even while you are waiting to hear back about your application. The more opportunities you apply for, the better chance one of them will work out. It truly is a “numbers game” in some ways or another.
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