The job search: Following up

      More people losing a job means more people are looking for a job right now.

      If you're one of them, you need to stand out from the crowd. And there's more to it than putting together a good resume and cover letter.

      What you do *after* you send that information could make all the difference. Click here for related stories

      Al Waters is the Director of Career Services at Western Illinois University.

      He says information from the National Association of College Employers showing 82 percent of people don't get a job because they don't follow-up on their initial inquiry.

      After hearing nothing for two weeks calling or sending a follow-up e-mail is okay.

      But Waters says nothing compares to a good, old-fashioned, handwritten note.

      Waters said, "Once you send a resume or cover letter and in two weeks they haven't heard back from them, sit down and write a note. Indicate you sent the letter on March 15 expressing your interest and in that letter enclosed a resume. Say, "I've not heard from you and I am writing to confirm and reaffirm my interest in the position." Confirmation and affirmation are very important things to do. Most people don't do that."

      It's easier to disregard follow-up e-mails and phone calls than to ignore a personal handwritten note.

      A note shows you put in extra effort.

      Employers also save correspondence like that for documentation, which means someone has to pick up your resume again to attach it to your file.