How (And Why) You Should Follow Up With All Of Your Candidates After An Interview

How (And Why) You Should Follow Up With All Of Your Candidates After An Interview

There’s a real art to engaging job candidates and presenting your company as the employer of choice, but it can make a huge difference to whether you manage to bag that superstar or not.

What many interviewers seem to forget is that they’re being judged just as much as the interviewees are…

…and the biggest candidate gripe?

Lack of feedback, following interviews.

Follow-up is essential.

At Coburg Banks, we always advise our clients to follow-up with every single candidate, whether rejecting them or offering them a job.

Leaving your candidates in the lurch after the interview could prove detrimental for your company, portraying you as indifferent and impolite.

The internet has made everything more transparent and negative feedback posted on social media, forums and review sites can really do damage to a company’s credibility.

You can pretty much guarantee that future candidates will check out your Glassdoor employer profile, before attending an interview.

If there’s even a shred of negativity, you could lose your ideal candidate!

So why risk it?

Most hiring managers refuse to follow up with candidates for one reason:

It’s a lot of hassle.

It takes time to call up all of the unsuccessful interviewees and it’s not exactly a fun job; turning people down left, right and centre!”

I hate to be harsh… but that’s just not true is it?

It takes just a few moments to send an email or to call a candidate and no, it’s not a pretty, but someone’s got to do it.

Following up with unsuccessful candidates.

  • Thank them for attending an interview and taking the time to apply for the job in the first place. Most of them will have made a lot of effort and it’s just polite to respond positively to that.
  • Ask if they want feedback. Most people will jump at the chance to improve, but some are surprisingly adverse to criticism.
  • Be fair; unsuccessful candidates are already bound to be disappointed; offer some positives and some negatives.
  • Be honest. You’re not helping anyone by sugar coating the truth.
  • Be constructive. Offer your advice and feedback in relation to the job description and company, with clear examples, to help them improve.
  • Be respectful, whether you liked them or not. Even if the interview was awful, there must be at least one positive you can pick up on.
  • Be objective. Don’t just offer subjective, unsupported opinions about the person. Base every piece of feedback on hard evidence and things that can and should actually be changed.

Keep all candidates in the loop.

Maintain contact with all of your candidates throughout the entire process.

Keeping them informed about when they can expect to hear the verdict, whether the process has been put on hold, whether interviews are still being conducted etc…

A quick email, letting them know could really make a huge difference to your image as an employer.

Following up with successful candidates.

If you do find a superstar, don’t let them slip through your fingers.

We’d always recommend calling a successful job candidate as soon as possible following their interview. It’s more personable, they’ll feel more loved and gives you a chance to gage their reaction and negotiate terms.

You should then follow-up with written confirmation of the job offer including…

  • The job title.
  • Salary and pay details.
  • The benefits.
  • The working hours.
  • Commencement date.
  • Probationary period.
  • Terms of employment.
  • Other relevant admin information.

…along with a request for them to complete a written acceptance form.

Good luck with your fantastic new member of staff!


The main thing to remember is – the recruitment process is a two-way street.

You’re on trial just as much as your job candidates so you should really be on your best behaviour – its not worth the aggro (especially online, for the world to see).

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Good luck!

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