Reasons Why You Need to Follow Up

John Krautzel
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Following up with a prospective employer after you submit a cover letter and resume remains one vital step in the job search process that many unemployed workers forget to do. You should send a quick email or call your future employer no matter what, regardless if you waited two days or two weeks without hearing back from a company.

Following up serves several purposes as you continue your job search. The end result of your careful communication is to land a job, so performing this step is a vital link to having a good experience.

1. Recognizing a Worker

Perhaps the most important aspect of following up is that the company sets you apart from candidates that didn't contact the employer. Sure, other people probably called or emailed as well. However, when you contact the employer for more information, you get a leg up on those that did not do that.

2. Impressing the HR Manager

Make an impression with your communication. Don't just ask about your placement within the queue of prospective candidates. Instead, request further information about a topic vital to the position. If you want a job in sales, consider a question like "How often do I access sales metrics on this job?" This type of question shows you have knowledge of what the company expects you to do.

3. Double-Checking

Following up makes someone double-check on the status of your application. Even with a lot of technology and computer files to organize information, your application and resume might have gotten lost in the shuffle. Calling or emailing gets your paperwork on the right track.

4. Obtaining More Information

The person you contact when following up may give you more information as to interviews, what the company expects or a practical aspect of the position not listed in the job description.

5. Scheduling an Interview

Many times, a company may schedule an interview when you contact the firm. You should always send a follow-up email, especially if you haven't heard in two weeks. One key to contacting the potential employer is timing. Ask someone when the hiring manager is in the office, and call or email when that person is physically there. That way, you may receive a better response.

In your eagerness, you probably submitted an application early. If you haven't heard back yet, don't follow up with a company until after the application deadline passes. The firm has to gauge the merits of your application, cover letter and resume against the others first before moving you to the next step.

Contacting the company after you submit your documents to a potential employer makes perfect sense, but many people don't call or email simply out of fear. Face your fears of rejection or failure, and give the company a call. Firms expect people to communicate, so following up is not an imposition. Instead, show your communication skills, ambition and go-getting attitude by requesting to speak to someone responsible for hiring you.

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