The job-seeking process is always changing – for instance, video applications are becoming common and new websites to apply on are always popping up. It shouldn’t be a struggle to keep up, though, especially since there are plenty of old-fashioned job hunting tips that will always give hiring managers a glowing impression of you.
1. Show Up Early
Arriving at a job interview early shows that you’re punctual and eager to work there. It’s also very courteous, in case they’d like to speed the interview process up or speak to you a bit beforehand.
Aim to show up 10-15 minutes early – this is the perfect amount of time to look prompt and dependable, but not too early that you’ll be spending too much time hanging around their building.
2. Greet People by Name
From the very moment you send in your application, you should be greeting everyone you interact with by name if possible. Your cover letter and introductory email should both be addressed to the hiring manager. Look for their name on LinkedIn or the company website if it’s not attached to the job posting. Of course, if you can’t find it at all, a personalized phrase like “To the Hiring Manager of Style Nine to Five” will still work, but a name is preferred!
Beyond that, once you get into the actual interview room, you should be using names as much as possible – when answering questions, addressing the hiring panel, and afterwards, when saying thank you or sending follow-up emails. This makes the entire interaction feel more personal and the people you’re speaking with feel that they’re important to you.
3. Notify Your References
When a company asks for references, be sure to notify everyone you’re listing and double-check that they’re comfortable with you using them as a reference before sending your list off. This way, your references will all be prepared with great things to say about you when the call comes through instead of being caught off guard. This could leave you with a rough review that isn’t quite thought through, and the company’s impression of you could suffer.
4. Make the Company Feel Important
Every company you apply to will assume you’re applying to others as well, which is why you need to prove to them that their company stands out from the crowd. As mentioned in the second point, you should make everyone you interact with at the company feel important, but you should also stress the importance of the company itself.
This begins in your cover letter – mention the company by name multiple times and address the reasons you think you’d fit right in with the company, referencing their values, products or mission. Carry this energy into your interview as much as you can, letting your interviewers know what draws you to the company where you see fit. Remember to be as specific as possible!
5. Follow Up With Thank Yous
It’s common courtesy to thank the hiring manager for their time and consideration in your cover letter and introductory email, but don’t stop there. After your interview, send another thank you letter to the hiring manager or company.
You can even take it a step further and look for the person who interviewed you on LinkedIn – add them there and send a personal thank you in their messages. Not only does it make you stand out from other applicants who neglected to do this, but it’s simply the polite thing to do.
It’s little details like these that can make or break how a hiring manager sees you. Your cover letter and resume can make you look like the perfect employee, but problems arise from not putting in the effort to show that the company is perfect for you. These are some of the oldest job-seeking etiquette tips in the book, so companies come to expect them now, too – make sure you hit all the bases and you’re sure to land in a hiring manager’s good books!
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Emily Morrison is a media professional with passions for writing, film and popular culture.
Feature Image: Adobe Stock