Job Seeker Blog - Spark Hire

Resume Follow-Up: What To Do Once You’ve Sent the Resume

So, you’ve been an awesome job seeker and have researched dozens of jobs that you were interested in and took the time to format and update your resume for each specific position. As Spark News has said before, completing all of this is a lot of work and makes a lot of people feel like searching for a job is a full-time job in and of itself. That may be true, but you can’t assume that your work is done once you have sent your resume off to a company.

If you think about it, there are probably hundreds of people that are applying for the same job you did. With the unemployment rate still at a high level, competition for any open job will be high and fierce. In order to remind a company that you applied for this job and to reinforce the idea that you really want the chance to wow them, then sending a resume follow-up is a great idea.

Of course, before we get into the meat of this article, it’s important to note that sending a resume follow-up to a company can come in a couple different ways. For some, sending an email may be your best bet while for others a phone call may be appropriate. Whichever you choose depends on the kind of job you are applying for, how you applied for it and how much you want this job.

When
The general response as to when you should send a follow-up to your sent resume is within one to two weeks. Anytime before one week could be a bit pushy and impatient. When a company posts a job opening, chances are they are receiving dozens to hundreds or resumes each day. Your resume is just one of those in the pile and it will take this person a bit of time before they can actually get to yours. After you have applied, give them a week to get to your resume before you send a follow-up email or make a follow-up call. Doing it a day or two after you applied is a bit impatient and pushy.

How
Unless you have networked your way into this potential job opportunity, the best way to follow-up with a job you applied for is by email. If you found the job you want on a job search platform such as Spark Hire, then following up by email is the most appropriate. So often job seekers think that by calling a company and asking if the person received your resume you will have a better chance of snagging an interview. However, recruiters and companies usually frown upon this and usually do not want to be bothered by phone calls from applicants trying to sell themselves. Chances are the person in charge of handling these applications is already super busy, so calling them will only annoy them. On the other hand, if you have met this person through your network or have already talked to them briefly over the phone, then giving them a call just to make sure they received your resume is more acceptable.

What to Say
You want to send a resume follow-up email, but you’re not quite sure what to say. Well, in this case the shorter, the sweeter. As I mentioned above, these people are likely very busy and they won’t have time to read your novella-length follow-up. Keep it simple and briefly ask what the next steps in the recruiting or hiring process are. Did they receive your resume or do they need any additional information about you? If it’s short, you can actually share any new information that may make you seem like a more desirable candidate.

For the most part, following up after you have applied for an open position is a great way to remind the employer that you are here and you really want this job. However, remember that these people are busy and they are likely working with a pile of resumes. Don’t be too hasty and pushy. If you don’t hear back from them at all after sending a resume follow-up, then it’s probably in your best interest to cut your losses and expend your energy elsewhere- this wasn’t the job for you.

IMAGE: Courtesy of The Job Pyramid

Nicole Nicholson

Nicole is the Content Editor for Spark Hire and mainly writes for and edits the work for the Spark News blog. She graduated in 2010 with a BA in Journalism from DePaul University in Chicago, Illinois. She has a passion for writing, editing, and pretty much anything to do with content. In her free time she frequents the Chicago music scene and writes reviews on shows for her own personal blog. Connect with Nicole and Spark Hire on Facebook and Twitter