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How to correspond with a potential employer

You’ve submitted an impeccable resumé and aced the job interview with your dream employer. Now you have to follow up.

Here are some tips for how–and how not to—correspond with your hiring manager, with insight from Susan Lof­fredo, an asso­ciate director of North­eastern University’s Career Devel­op­ment department.

‘Thx 4 the gr8 opportunity’

Many business etiquette experts advise job applicants not to text their hiring managers, particularly if they’re wont to tap out a message like “Thx 4 the gr8 opportunity.” Loffredo agreed. “Unless you’re specifically invited to text because the hiring manager is on the road all the time,” she said, “then don’t intrude.”

Instead of texting a thank-you note, express your post-interview gratitude via email. As Loffredo explained, “it can be a real boost to your application if it’s thoughtful.”

Be sure to send a note to everyone with whom you inter­viewed, she said, and keep it short, limiting your message to six sentences or fewer.

If you stick the landing, don’t hug the judge

According to Loffredo, it’s perfectly acceptable to connect with your hiring manager on LinkedIn after you’ve formally accepted the job offer. But sending a LinkedIn invite to your hiring manager after merely acing your job interview would be inappropriate and unprofessional. As The Muse, the popular career site, put it, “that would be like nailing the landing in gymnastics and then running up to give the judges a hug before they even gave you a score.”

From Loffredo’s perspective, it’s bad practice to send a LinkedIn invitation to a person in your industry whom you’ve yet to meet face-to-face. “If there is someone you want to connect with,” she said, “find a way to be introduced and ask for an informational interview. After the informational interview, sending a LinkedIn invite is totally appropriate.”

‘Sleep on it’

The length of the hiring process has grown dramatically in recent years, according to a study by the employment site Glassdoor, increasing from 12.6 days in 2010 to 22.9 days in 2015.

If you haven’t heard from your hiring manager in the seven to 10 days following the interview, feel free to email requesting an update. “Restate your interest in the position,” Loffredo said, “and ask if there’s any additional information the hiring manager can provide.”

If you do eventually receive the job offer, thank the hiring manager for picking you and then ask if you can take a few days to consider your decision. Use the time to do research, Loffredo explained, gathering information on things like benefits, compensation, and work-life balance. “Tell the hiring manager that you are delighted and honored to be offered the position and then ask when he or she would like to hear back,” she said. “It’s a big decision and you don’t want to regret blurting out ‘yes’ before having time to sleep on it.”

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