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by Val Matta | CareerBuilder
This time of the year, many employers review up to 100 resumes per job opening — and that’s if they’re getting looked at all. With so many applications, there’s clearly a certain etiquette that needs to be upheld, particularly when it comes to following up after you apply. Unfortunately, following up incorrectly can send your résumé to the trash can.
While it’s always advised to follow-up after you apply for a job, doing so in the wrong way can severely impede your chances at landing an interview. If you’re uncertain on follow-up etiquette, here are some do’s and don’ts to consider:
DO contact the right person. It’s so important to contact the right person in the follow-up process. After all, you’d probably be peeved if people were contacting you for the wrong reasons. While the job description may not include contact information, there are some easy ways to obtain it. Use databases or check out who posted the job on social media. By doing a little detective work, you’ll be able to find the right point of contact.
DON’T call or email if the job description explicitly says not to. It’s vital that you follow all directions, even if they go against follow-up protocol. For instance, if a job description explicitly says no phone calls or emails, this means no phone calls or emails. Although it’s not exactly the best scenario for your candidacy, you have to respect the wants and needs of an organization.
Instead, do little things to “follow-up” such as becoming a fan of the organization on Facebook or mentioning them on Twitter. While you shouldn’t be too obvious, these little gestures can help you to stand out.
DO take schedules into account Employers are busy people. They may not have time to respond to every email or call back every candidate. Although you did take the time to apply for the position, you have to understand the schedules of the hiring department, especially if the position is highly coveted.
Here’s a tip: Following up after one week is pretty customary, no matter how busy an employer may be. If the job description says anything else — such as following up after two weeks or sending them a message on LinkedIn — be sure to keep these methods in mind, as well.
DON’T follow-up more than twice. While not everyone may agree, it’s okay to follow-up on your follow-up. Emails can always get lost in the shuffle or the employer may have forgotten to respond to you. However, anything more can be seen as annoying and overbearing, especially if it’s the same message twice. Oftentimes, an employer may have “mentally” acknowledged they got a message or voicemail and simply decided to leave it at that. Once you’ve followed up twice, you’ve done your part and should wait for things to unravel organically.
DO cut your losses if there’s radio silence. It’s a tough pill to swallow, but sometimes you need to cut your losses. It’s nothing personal — nor should you take it as such — but sometimes someone was just more qualified than you. When this happens, you can either get angry or you can learn from your mistakes.
If you’re not landing interviews, take a look at how you’re following up after you send in your application. You’ll likely find a connection between how you contacted an employer and the outcome of your candidacy.