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Avoid Unintentional Missteps in the Hiring Process – Part 4: Follow Up

Follow Up

Applicants are excited when they pass the first round of reviews and get called in for an interview. Don’t leave a bad impression by failing to follow-up after the initial contact. Even if you don’t hire them. Follow up and show that you respect them and appreciate their effort to apply and interview.

Tip #4: Follow Up with Candidates You Interviewed

It’s understood that candidates will most likely not hear back when they simply apply for a position and don’t make it to the next round. But, when you call someone in for an initial interview, a follow-up is a necessary action to preserve your reputation and show that you respect the candidate’s time and effort.

Nobody likes to be left hanging. If you interview someone, either on the phone or face-to-face, they deserve closure, a short e-mail or phone call will do. To bear rejection is hard enough but to be left wondering if you got the job is not only hard on the person’s ego, it may also prevent them from pursuing other opportunities. Oftentimes, candidates wait to apply for additional jobs until they hear back from the one they just interviewed with. If you don’t get back to them or wait too long, they may resent the fact that they let other opportunities go by.

Timing is Everything

The minute you know you aren’t hiring a specific candidate let them know. A quick phone call or email is sufficient communication. If you are thinking of hiring a candidate but it’s between them and another, you should let them know that as well.


When you word the follow-up, keep it short and sweet. Thank them for their time and effort and let them know the company is hiring another applicant. It never hurts to put in a word of encouragement such as: “You were a strong candidate. I’m sure you will find something soon.” But, only speak the truth. It’s not necessary to lie. Occasionally, a candidate might respond and ask for specific feedback. If that happens, try to be short and honest in your response.

To ensure that you put your best foot forward and leave a good impression on your candidates, follow-up with them after the initial interview. Even if you don’t hire them, it’s important to show respect to them and let them know. You never know what the future holds. Maintaining a good relationship with the candidate is very important.

Catch up with us next week for Tip #5: Onboarding a New Employee

HRinDemand is committed to helping small businesses avoid unintentional missteps in the hiring process and the entire HR process. If you have comments, questions, or concerns regarding your HR Processes, call us at 775-400-1322 or contact us.

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