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In this post, we wanted to cover a key, but often overlooked, step in the interview process: how to follow-up after your interview! If you missed them, you can also check out our previous articles on questions to ask your interviewers as well as research skills that can keep you competitive.

Once you’ve gone through a few rounds of interviews, you might be tempted to think that the next step is to wait (especially if things went well), but remember it’s not over until it’s over! You always want to leave a positive impression on a potential employer throughout the process, and that includes how and when you follow-up with them.

Tips for Post-Interview Follow-Up

The Art of the Thank-You Email

First things first: after interviews (and yes, even virtual interviews!) it is always appreciated when the interviewee (you!) follows up with thank-you emails to their interviewers. We’ve pulled together some tips for how to send thank you emails, what to write, who to include, and the ideal timeframe:

1. Try to collect emails as you go

Throughout the interview process, do your best to collect emails from any interviewers that you speak with so you can send them a thank-you email afterwards. If you missed getting contact info from someone, try to reach out to your company contact (or recruiter, if applicable) to get any missing email addresses.

2. Write separate, personalized emails to each interviewer

Do not write the same message to everyone! Short, 4-5 sentence emails are fine, but always write unique notes to each person who interviewed you. One of the best ways to stand out is to send thank-you emails tailored to the specific conversations you had. If you had a panel interview and spoke with several people at once, each of them should still get a different email.

3. Reiterate your interest, provide specific research/insights examples if relevant

A great starting point for what to write in a thank-you email is to emphasize your interest in the company and particular role based on your conversation (i.e. “I’m excited that your research team is {implementing specific tools? leveraging certain methodologies? building out a function or area within the practice?}, and to put my expertise to use!”).

If appropriate, you could also provide a link to a project or work sample that supports your note (i.e. “I know we talked about my work with Nike, here’s a quick example of some of that from my portfolio!”). Make sure not to bombard your interviewers with too many links or irrelevant information – one or two specific project examples should be enough.

4. Send the emails ASAP, ideally within 24 hours of your interviews

In terms of timing and when to send thank-you emails, the sooner you can send out thoughtful and personalized notes, the better! We always advise sending emails instead of traditional paper (snail) mail – the last thing you want is for the hiring team to have already made their decision before your note even arrives. The decision process often moves faster than the postal service, so an email that arrives same-day or the next morning is the way to go!

Managing Post-Interview Expectations

After you’ve completed the interview process and sent your thank-you notes, you may need to be patient and wait to hear back (we know this can be the toughest part!). Here are some additional tips regarding the post-interview process:

1. Look to your potential employer’s timeline for follow-up guidance

With so many teams hiring research & insights professionals, most employers are aware that the market is competitive and will try to give you a sense for timing around when they will have feedback or a decision after the interview.

After you’ve sent your thank-you emails, wait to send any additional follow-up notes until after the timeline the employer has provided. If you’re working with a recruiter, they should be a good resource for letting you know when to expect a response!

2. Do your research on salary expectations

Before the job offer and negotiation process, make sure to do ample research on realistic salary expectations for your field. Burtch Works has published salary reports for research & insights professionals, but also keep in mind the targeted salary range the company has in place for the role and how compensation can vary depending on industry and location.

3. Keep your contact apprised of other interview activity or job offers

Dealing with an active interview schedule or multiple job offers can be a tricky situation, but transparency is the best policy. If you’ve been actively interviewing and things seem to be moving along quickly or your status changes with another company, make sure to let your contact know so that they can take that into consideration and try to keep pace if possible.

 

Timing can play an integral role in any job search, especially in an active job market. Hopefully these tips provide you with a good starting point for putting together thoughtful correspondence after interviews. Best of luck in your job search, and keep an eye on the blog for more job search tips!

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