5 impressive ways to follow up on a job application

You have recently submitted an online job application or dropped off your application in person. Now that the hiring manager has your resume and application, how long do you wait to make contact if you don’t hear anything?

After submitting your job application, the next steps can be challenging to navigate, especially if you really want this job. Do you follow up by email or by phone? Do you follow up at all? There is a fine line between being pushy and annoying or showing you are serious about the position you are applying for.

As a mid-level manager, I have seen my fair share of applicants do the right thing and the wrong thing when it comes to following up on a job application. 

Here are 5 impressive ways to follow up on a job application:

1. Know the job application timeline

Many job application processes specifically state when applicants will be notified of their results. Paying attention to this detail will keep you from quickly losing any chance of being hired. Few things bother hiring managers more than applicants asking for an update before the announcement date.

By asking if you received the position, or for an update before the stated announcement date, you are showing you don’t follow instructions and are not the right person for the job.

2. Reach out one week after applying for the job

A week after applying for a position, send a quick email thanking the hiring manager for their time and expressing your continued interest in the position. This follow-up email is a great way to keep your name in their mind.

An example of a follow-up email would be:

Subject: Follow up on Marketing Manager position

Hello Mr. Smith,

I wanted to thank you for the opportunity to apply for the Marketing Manager position. I know you may have several other qualified candidates for this position, but I wanted to express my strong desire to join your team. If given the opportunity, I would be honored to work with you and continue to grow your marketing section.

Please let me know if you have any other questions for me.

Have a great week!


A short and sweet email, similar to the one above, is a friendly reminder you are still interested and are a strong candidate. Be sure to send the email directly to the hiring manager rather than a general customer support email.

3. Avoid being pushy, at all costs

You may need this job to pay the bills but sounding desperate or inundating the hiring manager with constant phone calls or emails is a quick way to add your application to the trash pile. Managers want to know you’re interested, but they don’t want to deal with being bombarded with people asking about their status. 

Managers are extremely busy and want to get a new person in place as quickly as you want to know.

4. Reach out to your network

If you know people in the organization who are not directly involved in the hiring process, reach out to them and see if they have an update for you. Often, even line-level employees know who is going to be hired before the applicant does. 

Keep in touch with any internal network connections to show your continued interest and dedication to obtaining the job.

5. Call the manager, as a last resort

In the age of technology, most of us avoid phone calls and would rather respond to a text or email to save time. If your initial follow up email falls on deaf ears, wait another week or so before attempting contact by phone.

Again, be sure to follow up by phone only after attempting to contact the manager by email. Also, do not ask for an update if the job application specifically states an announcement date.

 A quick thank you for your time phone call is perfectly acceptable and will keep your application relevant and your name in the hiring manager’s mind.