First Send a Resume, Then Follow Up


JF-Expert Member
Feb 2, 2008
You've found your dream job.

You spot the job posting, craft a winning resume and e-mail it to the recruiter. Then the waiting game begins.

After you've sent a resume, it's tempting to sit back and hope the recruiter will call. But -- make no mistake -- you SHOULD follow up. You just need to figure out when and how to do it.

Wait a Week, Recruiters Say

The ideal amount of time to wait before following up on a resume you've sent: One week.

The majority of recruiters (53 percent) say candidates should wait one week before following up, according to a HotJobs survey.

Some recruiters prefer you act sooner: Twenty-one percent said candidates should wait less than one week. And others prefer you wait longer: Eight percent said candidates should wait two weeks.

And some even rather that you wait for them to call you. Nineteen percent of recruiters surveyed said they preferred to contact candidates, rather than for candidates to contact them.

Your best bet? Go with the majority opinion and wait a week.

Send a Short E-Mail Message

E-mail is a great follow-up tool because it not only lets you remind the recruiter that you've applied for a job, but it also lets you submit a resume again without seeming too pushy.

A week after you've submitted a resume, send the recruiter an e-mail to follow up.

Use these tips to write your follow-up e-mail:

Put your full name and the title of the position you've applied for in the subject line.

Write a professional note that reiterates your qualifications and interest in the job.

Attached your resume again. (Don't make the recruiter have to dig though old e-mails to look for it.)

Include your full name in the file name of your resume.

Don't forget to proofread carefully before you hit "Send"!

Phone With a Friendly Reminder

If you decide to follow up on a resume over the phone, be sure to rehearse what you want to say to the recruiter.

Keep it short and sweet. Introduce yourself and remind the recruiter that you submitted a resume recently. Make sure you state exactly what job you're interested in. You can also ask if they received your resume and if they're still considering candidates for the position.

If you get a recorded message, you may want to call again later. Call a few times in hopes of speaking with a real, live recruiter before resorting to leaving a message.

You also need to know even to put down the phone. Calling recruiters repeatedly isn't going to make them more likely to call you back. It's probably just going to irritate them.

Almost half (47 percent) of recruiters claim that their biggest pet peeve is candidates who keep calling them, according to a HotJobs survey.

Should You Just Resend Your Resume?

Have a few weeks passed since you sent a resume and you still haven't heard from the recruiter? Are you considering simply reapplying for the position?


Recruiters usually keep resumes on file, and they'll likely discover that you've already sent one. Worse, they may think that you didn't even realize that you'd already applied for a position.

Only resend your resume to a recruiter when you want to apply for a different position at a company. Otherwise, you should e-mail or call to follow up.
0 Reactions
Top Bottom