Thursday, June 27, 2024

What to do After an Interview

By Fabiola Duarte

Have you just completed an interview? If so, congratulations! While the interview may be over, there are a few things you can do to set yourself up for success in the recruitment process, and your future interview opportunities. Let's go through some best practices post-interview.

Evaluate How the Interview Went:

Once you've thanked your interviewer and left the building, find a quiet place to evaluate the interview. Give yourself credit for what went well and think about ways to correct any slip ups. Doing this while it’s fresh in your mind will help you improve for the future.

By taking the time to review what happened, you’ll have a record of your performance. More importantly, if the job offer doesn’t go to you, you can use your notes to analyze your performance and prepare for your next interview.

Don’t take it personally if you don't get the job. Employers often find it hard to choose one person from among several well-qualified candidates. There are many reasons why you may not be the successful candidate.

Your interview notes can include:

  • The names of the interviewer(s)
  • The interview questions you remember
  • How you answered the interview questions
  • Salary figures, if the interviewer brought them up
  • Anything else you might need to remember if you are offered the job

Learn from each interview by asking yourself some of these questions:

  • If interviewing in person, did you find the location easily? Did you arrive on time and well-prepared?
  • If it was a virtual interview, did you have any technical difficulties? Were you in a good video and audio environment so you could present yourself professionally and without interruptions?
  • Did the interviewer ask questions that you were not prepared for? If so, how can you prepare better for future interviews?
  • How well did you make the link between the skills you offer and the skills the employer needs for the job?
  • What questions did you handle well?
  • What questions would you answer differently next time? If so, how?
  • Did you answer the interviewer’s underlying concerns as well as the questions asked? Did you address these concerns in a positive way?
  • What questions do you wish you had asked? For example, did you forget to ask anything about the job or organization?
  • How was your attitude? Were you professional, friendly, and polite? Were you pleasant, honest, and sincere?
  • Did you sum up your skills, and then leave promptly and politely at the end of the interview?
  • Do you need to do anything differently next time?

Follow up with the Employer

Follow up with the employer and thank them for the opportunity and remind them why you are a good fit for the position.

Send a thank-you note to your interviewer even if you didn't get the job. You can ask—politely—for feedback so you’ll know what to improve.

What to do if There is No Job Offer:

There are many reasons you may not get a job offer, such as:

  • Maybe someone else was more experienced.
  • Maybe your answers were not complete.
  • Maybe the interviewers wanted to hire someone they already knew.
  • Maybe you weren't a good fit with the company's culture.

Consider Asking for Feedback:

Many interviewers are willing to tell you why you did not get the job. Consider contacting the employer for feedback. Make sure to clearly let the employer know you’re not asking them to defend their decision. You are looking to learn so that you can do better at your next interview.

Common questions to follow up with are:

  • How can I improve my resumé?
  • How can I improve my interview skills?
  • What can I do better in the future?
  • Is there a chance for me to get a job at your company in the future?

Some interviewers may not want to answer. Other interviewers may give you some tips. Either way, make sure you are polite and do not argue with them. Thank them for their time and say goodbye.

Write a Thank You Note After Your Interview

Regardless of the outcome of an interview, it’s a good idea to write a brief letter of thanks for the interviewer’s time and consideration. It sets you apart from other applicants and may remind the interviewer about you and your strongest qualifications. You can also use your note to briefly supply additional information.

Like your resumé and cover letter, a thank you note should be tailored to the particular employer, so mention specifics from the interview. Here are some guidelines:

  • First paragraph: Thank the interviewer for his or her time and for telling you about the company and the position.
  • Middle paragraph: Note what you learned about the company during the interview. Remind the interviewer of why you are a good fit for the company’s needs and mention any qualifications or experience that you didn’t have a chance to talk about during the interview. If the interviewer raised any concerns during the interview or asked questions that you don’t think you answered well, address them again here.
  • Final paragraph: Confirm again that you are interested in the position.

You can send your thank you note by email so the interviewer receives it as soon as possible after the interview.

Interviews can be stressful, even when they go well. Take a few deep breaths and give yourself some time to relax, but don’t wait too long to make notes on your performance. What you learn from this interview can help you do even better on the next one. And take the time to write a thank you note to your interviewer. It could give you an edge over other candidates, and help you land a job offer. 


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