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Advice / Job Search / Resumes

Ask a Credible Career Coach: Should I Re-attach My Resume When Following Up on a Job?

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Dear Career Coach,

I know that sometimes it’s necessary to follow-up on an application to stand out and demonstrate your interest in the opportunity. But, when doing so, is it recommended that I re-attach my resume? Or, does that seem presumptuous?

Eager to Impress

Dear Eager to Impress,

Here’s my short answer: If you’ve spent time tailoring your resume and are extremely proud of it, there’s no harm in reattaching it. It never hurts to call more attention to your relevant skills and qualifications!

With that said, there are some caveats here to avoid that presumptuous trap you’re worried about.

First, it’s important that you’re considerate of the time that it takes for the employer to move to the interview stage—that doesn’t always happen fast. I would recommend waiting at least two weeks after applying to follow up. (And note that in some cases, it might even be longer.)

One good way to know when it’s an appropriate time to check in? Some job postings have an open period listed during which they’re accepting applicants. If you see that date listed, it’s wise not to follow up until after that deadline’s passed—so that you can get your name on the employer’s radar during the part of the process when they’re weeding through applications.

Remember, you don’t want to bug the hiring manager. Too much pestering might make him or her put your resume into the dreaded “reject” pile, so you need to walk the line between pesky and persistent.

When you determine it’s a good time to check in on the hiring timeline (and re-submit your resume, if you desire), make sure that your follow-up email also does the following:

  • Thanks the hiring manager for the opportunity to apply. A little gratitude can go a long way!
  • Briefly shares your knowledge of the company. Do your research to ensure you have a solid grasp on things like the company’s mission, culture, values, and goals.
  • Emphasizes how excited and passionate you are about the opportunity.

If you’re still stuck with no response after sending that thoughtful follow-up message, try thinking outside the box.

Instead of checking in with HR again, find someone else who works inside the company. Ask him or her for an informational interview or show up at networking events that people at the company attend.

Make it your goal to learn as much as you can about the company and get to know the people who work there. Ultimately, this is your best bet at getting a good word into HR and standing out from other candidates in the resume pile.

This article is part of our Ask an Expert series—a column dedicated to helping you tackle your biggest career concerns. Our experts are excited to answer all of your burning questions, and you can submit one by emailing us at editor(at)themuse(dot)com and using Ask a Credible Career Coach in the subject line.

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