How to Write the Perfect Follow-Up Email for a Job Application

How to Write the Perfect Follow-Up Email for a Job Application

- Published: - 6 minutes read

When applying for jobs, chances are each application is matched by countless others. With that in mind, the significance of a well-crafted follow-up email cannot be overstated. Job seekers often underestimate the impact that a simple follow-up can have on their chances of securing an interview or landing a position.

This article will guide you through the process of writing the perfect follow-up email after submitting a job application. From the timing of your follow-up to the tone you use, each aspect plays a crucial role in making a lasting impression on potential employers. Whether you are a recent graduate or seasoned professional, a follow-up email can give you a distinct advantage in the hiring process.

Here’s what this guide will cover:

  1. Be Patient with your Timing
  2. Write a Compelling Subject Line
  3. Briefly Reiterate Qualifications
  4. Ask Questions, Request Information
  5. Express Your Gratitude
  6. Keep it Short & Concise
  7. Remember to Proofread
  8. Finish it Professionally

Let’s get into it.

Be Patient with your Timing

While eagerness is commendable, sending a follow-up email too soon can come across as impatient. The general advice is to wait about five to seven business days after submitting your application before sending a follow-up email. This allows the hiring manager sufficient time to review applications without making you appear overzealous.

Patience is a virtue in the job-seeking process, and striking the right balance ensures that employers perceive your follow-up as a thoughtful gesture rather than a hasty inquiry. Remember, timing can be the difference between being seen as proactive or pushy, so choose your moment wisely.

Write a Compelling Subject Line

The purpose of your follow-up email is to highlight your enthusiasm and to remind the hiring managers about your interest. Your subject line should be clear, concise, but equally expressive.

Here are some examples that you can modify for your emails:

  • Follow-Up on [Job Title] Application: [Your Name]
  • Expressing Interest in the [Job Title] Position
  • Reiterating Interest: [Job Title] Application Status
  • [Your Name] - Checking in on the [Job Title] Position.
  • Following Up: [Company Name] Application Update Request

Remember, a well-catered subject line sets the tone for the rest of your email and encourages the recipient to engage with your message.

Briefly Reiterate Qualifications

Reaffirming your qualifications is crucial to remind the employer of your suitability for the position. Focus on key skills and experiences that align with the job requirements. Avoid restating the entire resume though! Focus on highlighting your most relevant achievements instead.

It is also a decent idea to invest some time revisiting the job posting. Identify specific skills, qualifications, or attributes the employer is seeking. In your email, strategically highlight how your experiences align with these requirements, for example:

  • Job Requirement: Strong proficiency in project management.
    • Highlight: I bring a robust background in project management, evident in my successful leadership of a team that delivered projects ahead of schedule.
  • Job Requirement: Excellent communication skills.
    • Highlight: My track record includes leading team meetings and client presentations, showcasing clear and effective communication abilities.
  • Job Requirement: Analytical skills and data-driven decision-making.
    • Highlight: I have a proven ability to analyze complex data sets, contributing to informed decision-making in my previous roles.

By addressing specific job requirements, you demonstrate a tailored and thoughtful approach, showing the employer that you have carefully considered their needs. This can significantly enhance your chances of standing out among other applicants.

Ask Questions, Request Information

Take this opportunity to engage your employer with engaging questions that would be difficult to ignore. Your aim is to get a meaningful dialogue going where you can express your genuine interest in the company, their culture, and the opportunity itself.

In order to seem genuine, your query needs to be specific, bonus points if you can refer to the job post itself and request for more information accordingly. Here are some examples:

  • Remote Work Dynamics
    • Given the current landscape, how has the company adapted to remote work? What specific tools or practices do you have to facilitate remote collaboration?
  • Team Collaboration
    • In the job description, there is a mention of cross-functional collaboration. Can you provide examples of how teams typically collaborate on projects? I value a collaborative environment and want to ensure it aligns with my working style.
  • Next Steps
    • What are the next steps in the hiring process, and when can I expect to hear back? I am eager to move forward in the process and potentially contribute to the team.

Conveying gratitude leaves a positive impression and emphasizes your professionalism and appreciation for the employer’s consideration.

Keep it Short & Concise

Brevity is crucial when sending follow-up emails, especially for job hunting purposes. By respecting the recipient’s time and delivering information efficiently, you maximize your odds of getting noticed and stand out from the crowd.

  • Make use of bullet points wherever possible.
  • Stick to short sentences and avoid writing long paragraphs.
  • Do not beat around the bush, state the purpose of your email right after your opening salutations.

Keep in mind that if you want a reply to your follow-up email, you should ask for one. The recipient must have no confusion regarding your expectations. If your intentions are vague, do not be surprised if you do not receive a response to your email.

Remember to Proofread

Before hitting the send button on your email, check for typos and grammatical errors. These mistakes may seem small, but they cannot be corrected without sending a correction email, so take your time before hitting that button and make sure all the information is correct.

Consider using proofreading tools or asking a friend to review your message to ensure it is polished and professional. A well-proofread email reflects attention to detail and reinforces your commitment to presenting the best possible image to prospective employers.

It is always a clever idea to send your resume along with your email as well, as this would let the employer easily assess your qualifications without having to go back to their list of applicants. Double check if you have attached the proper files before hitting that send button.

Finish it Professionally

When concluding your follow-up email for a job application, it is crucial to maintain a professional tone that leaves a positive impression. Here are some tips to help you finish your email in a manner that reinforces your candidacy:

  • Express Gratitude: Conclude your email by expressing gratitude for the opportunity to apply and reiterate your enthusiasm for the position.
  • Polite Closing: Use a professional closing such as “Sincerely” or “Best Regards” followed by your full name.
  • Contact Information: Include your phone number and LinkedIn profile (if applicable) for easy reference.

Remember, the closing of your follow-up email is the last impression you leave with the hiring manager, so ensure it reflects your professionalism and continued interest in the position. Keep it concise, polite, and focused on moving the conversation forward.

This guide was written by Guy Bou Samra, content editor at Mailmeteor. Mailmeteor is a simple & privacy-focused emailing software. Trusted by millions of users worldwide, it is often considered as the best tool to send newsletters with Gmail. Give us a try and let us know what you think!

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