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How to stay front-of-mind in the interview process

Posted by: Rebecca Craighill
05/09/2019
Company News

More and more companies put applicants through various stages. From phone screening and face-to-face meetings, to group interviews and live sessions. It’s a long process. So how do you keep yourself front of mind so they don’t forget you?

It comes down to two key processes:

  1. Get ahead.
  2. Follow up.

If you want to be memorable in the mind of the hiring manager, it’s vital to act on the above at every stage of the interview process. Here’s how……

You can get ahead and follow up either over the phone or via email.

Application

Do your research. If you find a company or a job role you’re interested in, find out where these jobs are, who hires for them and apply directly. Why not call hiring managers to see what roles are available? If they tell you they’re not recruiting until October, then put a note in your diary to follow up in September. You’ll be one step ahead of any competition.

Let’s say you apply for a job via email or a career board. Chances are the hiring manager will receive dozens of applications the same way.

You can get ahead and stand out by calling the hiring manager before your application to get more info. They’ll be impressed that you’ve made the effort and demonstrated you’re proactive (vs. the other dozen people who clicked “Apply” on a job board and waited for a call).

After your application, you can follow up by reaching out to let them know you’ve applied for the position and look forward to hearing from them.

Interview

Interviews can often be arranged a couple of weeks in advance. Get ahead by calling a day or two before to check that it’s in the diary. Do they want you to bring anything? What’s the dress code? 

After your interview it’s vital to follow up. A short, friendly email to your interviewer will do the trick. “Thank you for taking the time to meet with me today, I enjoyed learning about X, Y and Z, if you have any further questions, I look forward to hearing form you” etc. You get the idea.

You’ll likely be told what the next step of the interview process will be if you’re successful in round one (if they don’t tell you, ask!). This is your opportunity to get ahead again.

Round two

Round two could put you in front of a more senior member of staff. Perhaps not someone directly involved in internal recruitment - it could be a manager whose team you’ll be joining. Find out who this person is and consider reaching out to them to get ahead.

At Navartis our second stage is a live session with our Training Manager. Consider an email or phone call to introduce yourself and ask any questions you might have.

Another round two favourite is an “on the job” setting where they drop you into a team. They’ll show you some of the things you’ll be doing. You’ll be sitting with current employees, their opinion matters. So don’t forget to take down their names and remember you’re still in an interview, don’t get comfortable and make sure you leave a good first impression. 

Follow up on your round two by emailing the hiring manager. Ask them to thank the team/senior leader/training manager for showing you what the job will be like.

You can apply this technique to every stage of the interview process. Make sure you know who you’ll be meeting with – reach out to them before and thank them after.

Job offer

So they offered you the job and you’ve accepted? Is the get ahead and follow up method finished? No.

Before your first day, get ahead by calling the hiring manager/your new line manager. Again, ask any questions and let them know how excited you are to start.

You can even follow up on your first day on the job. On your way out the door, take two minutes. Tell your manager/hiring manager that you’ve enjoyed your first day and can’t wait to walk through the door tomorrow.

Final thoughts

You’ve probably realised that the get ahead and follow up method is about good communication and simply taking two minutes here and there to call/email a couple of people will make all the difference.

Don’t take anything for granted and utilise every touch point in the interview process that you possibly can to leave a lasting impression. Simply taking two minutes here and there to call/email a couple of people will make all the difference. 

By getting ahead and following up at each stage, you’re sure to stay front of mind in the eyes of the hiring manager. You’ll boost your chances of getting the job, and when you start people will notice that you’re eager and really want to be a part of their team.

Further Reading

6 things not to say in an interview & what to say instead
5 ways to make a great over-the-phone first impression
6 essential interview questions you should always ask
6 ways to start your career when you don't have any experience
5 CV cliches you need to avoid

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