What to Expect When You're Applying

Updated: September 9, 2020
  • Focus on applying to new job postings. For many of the most competitive opportunities, employers look at applications in the order they were received. You can pull an all-nighter and still submit a stellar essay before the deadline, but applications aren’t like that. You want to be among their first applicants.
  • Most, but not all, companies will send an automated email confirming that they’ve received your application. If you’ve submitted your application via email or regular mail, chances are you won’t hear back unless you land an interview—though some attentive employers might keep you updated along the way.
  • At this point, patience is a virtue. While most employers make decisions early on, some can take weeks, or even months. If there’s a role you’re extra excited about, feel free to politely follow up with the hiring manager after two weeks.
  • Just because you’ve applied to a dream job or three doesn’t mean the work is over. Major companies can receive hundreds of applications for a single opening—so the more applications you submit, the better the odds of landing an offer.