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When you send out your resume, it's important to follow up at the right time.

You've sent your resume — now what?

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You spot a job opportunity, craft a winning resume and e-mail it to the recruiter.

Then the waiting game begins. After you've sent a resume, it's tempting to sit back and hope the recruiter will call. But — make no mistake — you should follow up. You just need to figure out when and how to do it.

The majority of recruiters — 53 percent — say candidates should wait one week before following up, according to a Yahoo! HotJobs survey. Some recruiters prefer you act sooner while others prefer you wait longer.

Several prefer you don't contact them at all.

Your best bet? Go with the majority opinion and wait a week.

E-mail is a great follow-up tool because it not only lets you remind the recruiter you've applied for a job, but it also lets you submit a resume again without seeming too pushy. If you decide to follow up on a resume over the telephone, rehearse what you want to say.

Keep it short and sweet. Calling recruiters repeatedly isn't going to make them more likely to call you back. It's probably just going to irritate them.

Have a few weeks passed since you sent a resume and you still haven't heard from the recruiter? Are you considering simply reapplying for the position? Don't.

Recruiters usually keep resumes on file, and they'll likely discover that you've already sent one. Worse, they may think that you didn't even realize that you'd already applied for a position.

Only resend your resume to a recruiter when you want to apply for a different position at a company. Otherwise, you should e-mail or call to follow up.

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