En Route: A Career Blog

Do You Follow Up on Your Job Prospects?

AUTHOR: Darlene Zambruski
POSTED: July 26, 2011 at 12:42 pm

All too often candidates submit resumes then wait and wait and wait. When they hear absolutely nothing from the company where they’ve applied, they do several things:

1. Complain to their friends, spouse, significant other

2. Get angry or depressed about the lack of a reply

3. Forget about that job and look for another

4. Give up altogether – at least until their unemployment runs out

What they fail to do is to follow up on the job they really want by contacting the hiring manager/company again as a reminder of their talents, skills and abilities.

Submitting Your Resume is Only the Beginning

If you really want a certain position and you feel you’re well qualified for it, then don’t simply walk away if you haven’t heard anything. Wait two to three weeks and send a follow-up letter, along with another copy of your resume to the hiring manager, recruiter or the individual in charge.

Use a Follow-up Letter to Reiterate Your Interest

Details that should be in your follow-up letter:

1. Make it clear in the opening paragraph that you submitted your materials weeks before and you want to make certain that the hiring authority has received your data. This shows interest on your part and it also displays assertiveness.

2. Detail in the middle of your follow-up letter what qualifies you for the position – or at the very least, an interview. Be specific here – don’t generalize. For example: if you’re an accountant, don’t simply state “I’m an accountant”. So what? Hundreds of others who’ve applied probably have a similar background. Instead, show what you’ve accomplished. Did you save your last or current company money by streamlining processes? Did you reduce a tax penalty because of an error you caught? These are the kinds of achievements hiring managers most want to see.

3. End your follow-up letter proactively, especially if you didn’t end your cover letter that way. Request an interview to prove what you can do. State that you will be following up within the next few weeks to see if you can set up an interview (be certain to follow through). Again, this shows that you are interested in the job.

Never let an opportunity pass you by, then simply grumble about it because you weren’t chosen to interview. Send a follow-up letter and another copy of your achievement-focused resume to make the hiring manager and the company take notice.

Darlene Z.

Darlene Zambruski is a resume writing expert and CPRW (Certified Professional Resume Writer) with more than 13 years of industry experience. She has authored 10,000+ resumes in every industry and at every career level.

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