We all know the standard routine when trying to find a job: hours spent perfecting your cover letter to match the job requirements, making sure you have used the right adjectives to describe yourself to avoid words like “passionate”, sending a creative CV to stand out from the crowd… but what if making sure you got called in for an interview was as simple as picking up the phone? It might sound intimidating but this simple action could make all the difference, or not. Before you run to your phone to ring up and beg for an interview, find out when you should and shouldn't call employers.
When is it a good idea to call employers?
Before applying for a job
If there is a contact number provided for the job you're applying for (it’s rare, but it can happen), make the most it and pick up the phone. By calling, you're making an impression which means recruiters are more likely to remember you later on. Ask for the name of the person you spoke to and mention them in the email when you send your application, along with the date and what you discussed (obviously!). This will show that you are pro-active, resourceful and motivated
Before calling, prepare what you want to say
. Explain how you came across the job (website/job platform
), introduce yourself, explaining that you are very interested in the position and would like a little more information. Check if it's a good time or if they would prefer you to call back later.
Your question could be as simple as “What soft skills are you looking for in a candidate?”, “When can I expect to find out if I have been chosen for an interview" or "When are interviews expected to be held?”. Choose your questions wisely because saying the wrong thing could damage your chances. Avoid rambling
- stick to the subject, be concise, clear, polite and professional
A few days after applying
It's pretty certain that the recruiter has received your application, this is really just an excuse to get back in contact and make a good impression
. Introduce yourself, state when you applied and ask if they have any idea when you might find out if your application has been successful or not - this will show your interest and motivation. Thank them for the time and say that you hope to hear from them soon.
After your interview
It's a good idea to send a follow-up email 24-48 hours after your interview
and, if you still haven't heard anything, wait at least a week before getting back in touch
. If you have a contact telephone number, give your interviewers a call, if not send an email. Calling after an interview could influence employers if they haven't already made up their mind.
Employers want to be sure that they are choosing the right person for the job, and little gestures like these can help set you apart from other applicants
. Even if you aren't successful, they will remember you and may even call you directly the next time a similar vacancy comes up.
P.S. If you call and no one answers, make sure you leave a voicemail stating the reason you are calling to avoid a long list of missed calls from an unknown number.
When should you avoid calling?
Immediately after an interview
. Although it’s highly advisable to send a follow-up email
to thank interviewers for their time and ask any questions you didn’t have time for during the interview, calling directly after an interview could make you look desperate. Sometimes less is more, and it’s important to find the right balance. Don’t forget employers are busy people and unnecessarily interrupting them and adding to their workload will only make them less likely to employ you
Avoid calling too often
. It's okay to call once, but it could start to annoy employers if you call them constantly and will definitely put them off hiring you.
Only call if you feel confident enough
. Don't call if you're feeling stressed out
, take some time to relax and call later when you feel more calm.
There you go – we hope you found this advice helpful and remember: don’t underestimate the power of a phone call. We would love to hear what you think and if you have any good (or bad) past experiences you would like to share, feel free to leave a comment!