What to Do If You Don’t Hear a Response After an Interview

by Cayla Nava

What To Do if You Don't Hear Back From An Interview

The day has finally come… you finally landed that coveted job interview that you worked so hard to get. You show up dressed appropriately and prepared with talking points and answers to almost any question you know they may throw at you. The interview itself goes quite well, and the interviewer says they’ll get back to you as soon as they can. You send an email or written thank you letter to the interviewer expressing your interest in working with them and their company.  Time goes by and you wait patiently for that email or phone call that’ll give you the answer you’re looking for. Soon, you realize that you aren’t going to hear back from the company you interviewed with. This happens all too often! According to a Career Builder study among 3,991 employees, 60% said they have experienced this as a job candidate.

So, what’s next? Well, the first thing you should know is that you can’t lose confidence or hope that you didn’t receive the position you worked so hard for. In some cases, it is simply because the employer is overwhelmed with the communication process. This means they have so many applicants for so many different positions, that your interview may have fallen to the bottom of the stack or possibly lost among all the other applications and interviews. If you don’t hear back after several days to a week, depending on when the employer said they would get back to you, the best thing to do is to follow up with the company and find out if there is a verdict in the works for your desired position. Even if you end up finding out that you did not receive the job, the employer may be able to give you some advice on what you did right and wrong. If you’re working with a staffing/recruiting agency, check in with them as they may have easier access to the employer’s feedback.  If you find out you didn’t receive the job, getting feedback on the interview will better prepare you for your next interview. Just as an athlete practices shooting buckets or throwing touchdowns, interviews (no matter the company or business) are always beneficial for you and your future career in the long run.

Overall, there are several vital things you, as the candidate, should do if you do not hear back from your potential employer or staffing/recruiting agency after some time.

  • First, you should take the initiative and follow up with an email or phone call. Plan what you’re going to say so you don’t fumble over your words or ramble on unnecessarily (this plan should include what you will do if you don’t end up getting the job).
  • Make sure you’re gracious in your follow-up call or email (being pleasant and understanding is always better than impatient and annoyed).
  • Check your social network for any connections you may have from the company you interviewed with, such as colleagues or friends who currently work at the company. Remember to always gauge the responses to your outreach efforts before your next move; this just means that if the response is short and cold, then it’s best not pursue the job any longer.

The most important thing is to follow your gut and be realistic, keep the employer up to date as other activity manifests throughout the process, don’t take it personally if you don’t get the position, and finally, let the whole experience tell you about the company and who they are. Ultimately, you have to know your worth and what your skills and knowledge arebest for, and if it’s that company, then great. But if not, there is always another opportunity awaiting you on the horizon.