How do I progress my application without coming across as pushy?
WRITTEN BY: Laura Biggs
That job ad caught your attention, you did your research on the company, you tailored your resume, wrote a good cover letter, pressed send…and then nothing. This is a common scenario and we are often asked our advice on why this happens and what an applicant can do.
Many factors can be behind that silence. Having worked on both sides of the fence, as a recruiter and in-house, the hiring process can appear a lot simpler from the outside. When you are working on behalf of a company there are many factors that can slow the process of responding to applicants to a job. These can include internal movements such as resignations and internal transfers, project or workflow complications that divert the Line Manager’s attention, or even changing requirements regarding what skillset is required.
As an outsider to this, it seems logical to say, ‘well why doesn’t the company just update the candidate’. Often though the decision is not made. Often when recruiting internally you are thinking ‘as soon as I get the feedback, I will let the candidates know’ but there may be another project to consider or the appointment of one role is slowing the progression of another role. This is why a company can advertise a role and then take a few weeks to respond to applications.
So, what are the recommendations for following up when your application seems to have disappeared into a void? Firstly, go slow. While it may seem like a long delay to you, there may be factors that you are unaware of as outlined already. Therefore, I usually recommend waiting at least a week before following up.
If this time has passed, I advise checking the job portal you applied through. Often companies, at least the larger ones, have a portal that can indicate the status of a job for example currently reviewing applications. This can help if you see there is progress, even if it is slow. Or there may be a closing date before which applications may not be even viewed. Following up when the applications are being reviewed or before the closing date can often be viewed as frustrating rather than useful.