In the last article of the Experienced Required series, you learned how to handle yourself during the interview, what to say (and not say) to best show you’re the right fit for the job. In this article, you’re going to learn what to say in the follow-up email (that you should definitely be writing) after you’ve gone through the interview.
If you don’t think you have the experience, then you need to put more weight on other important factors to tip the decision your way.
And remember, DON’T talk about insufficient experience.
Emphasize that you value the relationship
When managers hire you they are looking for two things: technical skills, and team fit. You should have handled the technical skills / or gaps during the live interview. In the follow-up email, you want to emphasize the team fit.
The best way to demonstrate team fit is to show the manager that you have something in common with the team or the manager. For example, if the manager told you that he attended the same school you did, then make sure you remind her of that in the follow-up email. For example, you can say “it was great to meet a fellow SJSU Alumni….”
That’s why it’s important to ask questions during the job interview so you can find commonalities and reference them in the follow-up email.
Emphasize that you pay attention
On top of this, if you really want to make an impression, you want to show that you pay close attention by bringing up details of your interview. This continues the flow of the interview to make it feel like a longer conversation. You have a few options here.
1 – You can bring up a topic that was discussed during the interview (an aspect of the product, team, or company) and show that you did further research. Ex: “I was thinking about how your team is struggling to find a good usability testing provider – here’s a link to one that a previous colleague of mine really likes. He mentioned how they…”
2 – If you were asked a problem-solving question you didn’t have the answer to, then you can get back to them with the answer. But don’t overdo it here. Just one question that you thought was important with a brief answer. Ex: “In regards to your question on segmenting an e-mail list, I thought about it a bit more and…”
By doing either of these, you’re completing the circle on any open loops and creating an opening for them to comment or ask you any additional questions.
Emphasize that you’re interested in the position
Now that you’ve emphasized the relationship and that you pay attention, lastly, you want to let them know that you’re interested in the position if they offer it.
It takes A LOT of internal work and approvals to get an official offer ready and before a company extends the offer they typically like to know if the candidate will accept it or not. If they know you’re more interested, it will weigh in your favor.
For this section of the email, you’re just going to gently let them know you’re interested in the position. Something simple like: “I’d love to be part of your team at XYZ.”
If you’ve done all these steps (and followed the previous articles about what to do when you don’t have the right experience), you’ve significantly increased your chances of landing a position that you thought was out of your league.
Remember to keep the follow-up email brief and specific and to follow up within 24 hours of the interview so that you’re top of mind for them.