Dear Old Friend, Just Tell Them To Give Me The Job Already, Thanks.
May 1, 2014 5:37 AM   Subscribe

Advice needed for how to follow up on a networking email for an interesting job. Help!

Hello. So, to start with, I am currently gainfully employed (since last June) for a company with decent (if not great) compensation. The work is slightly less challenging than I would like, but I had been unemployed for nine months prior to obtaining this job so at that point beggars couldn't be choosers.

However, last week a really interesting job posting came across my radar for a company I'd really like to work for, and the job description is right up my alley. Even better, a buddy of mine who I've known since I was 17 years old (we met at a summer program between 11th and 12th grade, and the subsequently ended up at the same university!) works for that company - different department, but according to LinkedIn he's connected to the folks in the department where this new job would be housed. I shot him an email saying that I wasn't in "active" job search mode at the moment but this new job posting caught my eye and was making me consider making an exception, and wanted to know if I could pick his brain a bit about the company.

He responded last night enthusiastically, giving me his work email address and saying to drop him a line there and he'd put me in contact directly with the hiring manager. Yay! But now I'm at a loss, because I am an awkward sort who is really bad at networking and I don't want to make a bad move now.

What do I say when I email him at work? Obviously I'll email him from my personal email address (right?), but I don't know what I should actually say in the message, knowing it may be forwarded on to the hiring manager. Should I attach my resume? I haven't applied for the job through the official channel yet (thinking I was going to have a chat with this friend before I did so), but should I do that first before contacting him through his work email address, so if the hiring manager wants to review my materials first he can?

Help! I am quite hopeless at this. I got my current job via a temp-to-perm position and my job before that was also handled by a recruiter who contacted me first. This, in addition to the fact that my previous attempts at "leveraging my network" like this have never panned out, so I quite literally have no idea what the best practices are for how to proceed at this point. Any advice would be appreciated, as always.

posted by thereemix to Work & Money (2 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Apply to the job first, be sure to list your buddy in the "who referred you" section, frequently that gets you noticed (it does at our company) AND your buddy will get a spiff for the recommendation. Then follow up with an email to the hiring manager, and yes, attach your resume.

Dear Hiring Manager,

Dear Friend in the Company, Department, suggested that I contact you regarding your opening for Position. I've applied through formal channels, and I've attached my resume for your review. I admire Company for reasons X, Y, and Z, and I believe that I can make a contribution there. I'd love to discuss this with you at length, either in a formal interview or casually at your convenience.

Thank you for your consideration.



Don't go crazy, you just want to get on the guy's radar. After that, it's all about the candidate pool.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 5:58 AM on May 1, 2014 [4 favorites]

Seeing as your friend specifically said to contact him at work and he'd forward your info on to the hiring manager, I would send the email to your friend with a slightly more casual version of the sorts of things Ruthless Bunny mentioned (you're excited about the company and work), and attach your resume.

If I were you I'd also send an email to his non-work email (or call before you send the email) and ask him to take a quick look at your resume and email just to make sure he doesn't see anything that would be a red flag for the company (or that you should highlight). That way you can revise that casual work email if need be.

I would mention in your email to him that you also plan to apply through the official channels (and maybe do that the same day) so that the hiring manager doesn't have to seek out your info.
posted by ldthomps at 6:25 AM on May 1, 2014 [4 favorites]

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