A reader wrote in and asked whether they should follow up after submitting a resume. They had spent weeks trying to find a job: researching, writing their resume, and applying.
It’s been said that hiring managers only spend six seconds looking at your resume before moving to the next one. According to Business Insider:
Recruiters will look at your name, current title and company, current position start and end dates, previous title and company, previous position start and end dates, and education.
So how do you know if you’re resume caught their attention?
Should You Follow Up After Sending a Resume?
How Long Should You Wait Before Following Up?
Good question. You don’t want to look like a psycho stalker from one of those horror flicks so the general rule is to wait two weeks. Hiring managers are busy, and you want to make sure that they’ve had a chance to review your resume before you make the follow up call or email.
This also depends on how you found the job:
- Applying when you don’t know anyone at the company: In this case, wait the general two weeks as recommended above.
- Recommended by a friend: The best thing to do is to have your friend personally deliver your resume to the hiring manager. If you have to submit it directly to HR through the internet portal, follow up with your friend within three days to let them know that you’ve submitted your resume so they can put in a recommendation for you.
- When you know the hiring manager personally: If you already know the hiring manger and they’ve already talked to you about the job, I would suggest following up immediately. If you have already built of a rapport, there is no use in waiting.
Tips on Following Up
Think of the follow up as a way to get the hiring manager’s attention. You shouldn’t have to reiterate your skills again as you already did that with your cover letter and resume.
A phone call or email is fine. It depends on the job, how you’ve come across the opportunity, and what you are more comfortable with. If you know the hiring manager or have been recommended through a trusted source, pick up the phone. If you’ve applied through other channels, email is better because it will give the hiring manager time to look at your resume if they haven’t already done so.
A simple sample like this should work:
A lot of times you may not know the hiring managers name, but there are ways to find this info out such as calling the company, searching online, using Rapportive, or guessing email addresses.
How Many Times Should You Follow Up?
Typically, my advice would be to follow up only once. You don’t want to look too needy or aggravate the hiring manager before you’ve had a chance to impress them with your awesome interview skills.
On the other hand, persistence pays off sometimes. If you haven’t heard back and this is your dream job, maybe you can follow up a couple more times.
Whatever the case, you should most definitely follow up after sending a resume!