Contacting Hiring Managers After an Interview: 10 Truths You Should Know

Have you ever come across an exciting job possibility, landed an interview, and been on pins and needles to find out if you’re still in the running for the position?

Job hunting is not for the faint of heart and the “hurry up and wait” phase can be particularly taxing.

Of course you want to reach out to find out the status of your application. But are there times when contacting a hiring manager is a bad idea? Does it come across as an unprofessional move? Overeager? Or does it show that you are especially passionate about the role and driven?

The hard truth is that every position and situation is different. But there are ten truths that almost always apply. Consider these before you pick up the phone to check in on your dream job.

10 Truths You Should Know About Contacting Hiring Managers After An Interview

 1. It’s almost always ok to reach out to a staffing agency if they are playing matchmaker between you and the hiring company. Recruiters have a responsibility to let candidates know where they stand. That respect is essential as job seekers are a crucial component of a successful staffing firm.

 2. Expect responsiveness from staffing agencies. Don’t expect it from a hiring company. Staffing agencies should provide job seekers with excellent communication. Companies doing their own hiring may not have capacity to provide the same courtesy. No matter who you interview with, you should feel empowered to ask where you stand in the interview process.

 3. Check in on the status of your application via email. Do not call. This gives managers the opportunity to respond to you when it is convenient for them.

 4. Only contact a hiring manager if that manager conducted an interview with you directly. It’s inappropriate to reach out to a hiring manager at a company if you interviewed with someone at a staffing firm or in another role. If you try to work around a staffing company, it could backfire. If invited to do so, copy your contact at the staffing company on any communication. If your staffing company is left in the dark, they can’t champion for you.

 5. Reach out to a hiring manager for one of two reasons: to check the status of your application or to request feedback after you have received notice that the company chose another candidate. And remember, only do either of these if you have been granted permission.

 6.  If a hiring manager requests that you do not reach out to check in on the status of your application, respect his or her wishes. You should only reach out if given permission to do so. There’s a difference between being a proactive job seeker and not respecting the process.

 7. If you are waiting to hear back from an interview, keep searching and applying for other opportunities. This keeps the positive momentum going and helps keep your mind occupied.

 8. If your interviewer shares a date with you that they will make a decision by, it is a good rule of thumb to wait until a week after that date has passed to check on the status. If they didn’t share their timeline and you haven’t heard from them in two weeks, it’s okay to send an email and ask about next steps and when they anticipate making a hiring decision.

 9. When you’re contacting hiring managers, always be polite and gracious. It will not serve you to appear frustrated, impatient, or entitled. Reiterate your interest in the opportunity and thank them again for their time.

 10. Even if you find out the door has closed on an opportunity, it is ok to reach out and request feedback. Remember to be realistic, though. Hiring managers do not always have time to offer constructive feedback. The further you make it into the interview process, the more appropriate it is to ask why you weren’t a fit, what you could improve on, or how you could make yourself a more desirable candidate.

There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to following up with a hiring manager. Some people need closure while others are fine without it. If you do want to follow up, adhere to these ten tips. And if you’re considering using a staffing firm to search for your next opportunity, take a look at our current job postings and feel free to contact us to learn how we can help you.

Related Resources 

5 Ways to Kick Off Your Job Hunt [article]
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Spring Clean Your Resume [article]
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by McKinley Marketing Partners