Bottom line, when you don’t hear back after a job interview, it is because the potential employer is not ready to take the next step with you. Instead of MSUing (making stuff up) about why, use these 6 after-the-interview tips:
1. Did You Send a Thank-You?
Current research shows at least 68% of hiring professionals want to receive a thank you email, letter, or note, but only 43% of job seekers send them.
2. Assess Your Performance
When you leave the interview, make a note of how long you were there. The longer the interview, the better.
After that, it’s a good idea to wait up to 24 hours to let the experience settle.
Then, review your interview performance and take your learnings. If you don’t feel good about how you answered the interview questions, don’t fall into the trap of criticizing yourself or the company.
It doesn’t help to focus on negative thoughts.
3. Keep Your Job Search Rolling
Stay focused on your job search by tracking this performance metric. Continue to find and pursue job openings. That’s the best action you can take to increase your chance of getting an offer.
4. Follow Up Every 2 Weeks
Reach out to your primary contact person(s) every 2 weeks. If you call more often, they’ll feel stalked. Make contact less often and they’ll likely assume you’ve lost interest.
Call the hiring manager if you have met them. That goes for the recruiter/HR rep on the search too. Ask where they’re at in the hiring process. Graciously restate your interest in the position.
Both HR and the hiring manager have tasks to complete in getting to an offer. Thus, it’s good for them to visit the status of their search every 2 weeks. Your calls will make that happen and might get a stalled process moving again.
If you don’t connect on the phone, leave voice mails and send an email addressed to both people.
Do this for 2 months and then, if you haven’t heard anything, it’s probably time to let go. The 2021 Jobvite Recruiter Nation Survey found that 91% of jobs get filled within 60 days:
5. Connect with Administrative Assistants
If you connect with administrative assistants rather than your targets, don’t be upset. Except for making the decision, good AAs can do everything needed to get you hired.
Because of this, an AA might be your best contact.
I have seen them take ownership for completing a search more than once (getting interviews scheduled, doing administrative work, etc.). They don’t like telling you there’s no news, so they often take the initiative to keep the process moving.
6. Don’t Forget Your Recruiter
If an external recruiter introduced you, be sure to check in with that person and copy them on emails.
Accept What You Can & Can’t Control
Follow those after-the-interview tips. Then, keep on finding and creating more great career options for yourself.
If you don’t hear back, know that per a Greenhouse survey, 75% of people have been ghosted after an interview. You can’t control people’s behavior inside the company, but you can control your own.
One more thing, in the not-too-distant future, you might be able to get a status like this sample interaction from Aptitude Research’s recent report on conversational AI in recruiting:
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Updated May 2022
© 2010 – 2022, Donna Svei. All rights reserved.
Donna Svei, an executive resume writer and former C-level executive, retained search consultant, and CPA, authors all of AvidCareerist’s posts.
She is a Fast Company Contributor and has written for and been quoted by 100+ business and general media outlets, including Forbes, Inc., Entrepreneur, CNBC, the New York Times, USA Today, Time, US News & World Report, CBS, the BBC, Lifehacker, Social Media Today, IT World, and Business News Daily.
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