I found another group that I'm considering as a potential new place to work.

The head of the laboratory sent me the following message:

Name, greetings!

My name is Dr. Surname. I am the head of this laboratory. In addition, in general, I am engaged in this area.

For now, I’m just writing to confirm that your letter was not lost, but reached the addressee. If you allow, I will answer in detail within a couple of days. This address, from which this letter was sent, is my personal one. You can always contact me directly using it, if necessary.

Sincerely, Dr. Surname.

This was on Thursday. Several days have passed, but no answer has come. Should I wait, or write a reply with a reminder myself? If so, what is the best way to write it?

  • You applied on Thursday, today is Monday. You don't specify location but many countries have a standard working week of Mon-Fri, meaning you have only waited somewhere around the 2 days you were told to expect for a reply. Its too early to chase this up. I'd wait until at least Wednesday before any follow-up.
    – simonc
    Commented Apr 22 at 9:28
  • @simonc Yes, I expected an answer somewhere around Friday evening or Saturday afternoon.
    – ayr
    Commented Apr 22 at 9:29
  • 2
    you expected a call from the employer on Saturday? I don't know what kind of company you applied to, but usually HR departments don't work on Saturdays. Note that "couple of days" usually mean "a few working days". If the interview was on Thursday I would wait at least until next Thursday to ask for feedback. Apart from that, an email starting with "Greetings! I am the head of this laboratory" (not mentioning your name, not mentioning his/her name) will immediately raise red flags to me. I would expect something more like "Dear John Smith. I'm David White, head of the laboratory...."
    – Elerium115
    Commented Apr 22 at 9:43
  • 1
    @Elerium115 You should write that up as an answer to the question. Commented Apr 22 at 10:39
  • 1
    @dtn if I write on Friday afternoon a work email like: "Give me a couple of days to check that and I'll come back to you" what I mean is that I'll look at in on Monday and Tuesday and come back to you on Wednesday (maybe Thursday). Couple of days don't mean exactly two days, and they mean working days.
    – Elerium115
    Commented Apr 22 at 11:14

1 Answer 1


You got an email on Thursday. It is now Monday.

It is still within a couple of business days. Unless they specifically say they will contact you on a weekend, expect that they are counting business days.

Give it a couple of more days. Then politely reach out to them.

There are exceptions to the units being business days. One is the case of work being done by the business 24/7 and you know that person doesn't work day shift M-F. If you are talking to the Team A lead and currently they are in the middle of their nights stretch, then how they count days might be different.

  • You were right. I needed to wait a little. The answer has come and I will need real advice there.
    – ayr
    Commented Apr 23 at 9:08

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .