How Not to Follow Up After a Job Interview
A rogues' gallery of infamously inappropriate follow-ups.
Clearly, the Web provides job-seekers the ability to find out a wealth of information about a prospective employer and in most cases, dogged research will reflect well on your motivation.
But as information security consultant Lenny Zeltser points out, you can get downright creepy with the information you can find about the people interviewing you. Just don't.
At the same time, tools such as LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook also provide avenues for job-seekers at all levels to engage with recruiters. When I interviewed Chris Galy, Intuit's recruiting director, he said that job candidates should take advantage of that. He said:
My recruiters are not invisible, they're out there. So if you want to engage, to ask questions about what it's like to work at Intuit, to ask, "Do you have any jobs like this?" We're out there and most of the leading companies are out there. That's a trend in the recruiting industry. So if you're not using those 24/7-type of tools in your career search, you're going to be left behind.
I think most of us are pretty nervous about doing that. Is that appropriate before landing an interview or only after an interview? True, companies will appreciate a highly motivated candidate, but at what point do you become a pest? So I asked Galy to follow up on that. Here's what he said:
- Create your targeted company list. Check out the company websites and see what positions you are qualified for (note the position number), then follow those companies on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. Check to see if they have a YouTube profile as well.
- Then see what type of messages the company is putting out. Our sites actually introduce our recruiters with the types of roles they are recruiting for. Applicants should feel free to connect with the recruiters before or after interviews. If you find a hiring manager you feel you might have an interest in working for, try connecting with that person as well. (Some will be open, others will not. Be polite and keep your message professional.) Follow blog posts the recruiters do or discussions they are having so you can gain a common ground for discussion. Don't just ask for the job; engage in a conversation.
- If there is a discussion on an area of expertise, join in. If you know someone who would fit a role, recommend him or her. If you like a post, a video or a discussion, say so. Try to do as much up-front research as possible if you are asking for help and include the position number and a resume on each request.
- The key overall is to be professional in all posts and assume the recruiter is doing everything he or she can to get the best candidates farther in the process. So be patient and persistent. A lot of landing that best next job is timing!