You catered your resume to the position and crafted a compelling cover letter. Then, you landed an interview and gave it everything you had. And finally, you hear…nothing.
It’s an all too common scenario when it comes to the job search process; once the interview is over, it feels like radio silence on the part of the hiring manager. And that silence is the last thing you wanted to hear.
But a lack of feedback doesn’t necessarily spell doom. Here are five reasons you aren’t hearing back after an interview (and most of them have nothing to do with you).
1. Other Candidates Are Being Interviewed
Depending on the hiring manager’s schedule, the interview process might not be completed in a single day, or even over the course of a week. And, if it’s a multi-round interview, it can take even longer. In most cases, candidates aren’t informed of the results until all of the interviews are complete, regardless of how well it went.
2. Multiple Decision-Makers Are Involved
If you interviewed with a panel or had multiple one-on-one interviews, then the decision is likely made by a group and not a single hiring manager. That means every interviewer has to provide feedback and an agreement must be reached. Depending on the number of candidates still in contention, and the schedules of every interviewer, this process might draw out for days or weeks.
3. Work Gets in the Way
Most hiring managers also have regular job duties they must complete. If something urgent comes up after your interview is complete, they might be turning their attention to a pressing issue that simply can’t wait. Since hiring a new employee isn’t generally critical to business functions, the process will be delayed whenever something more important requires their attention.
4. It’s a Close Call
Sometimes the decision comes down to two very qualified candidates, and choosing between two great options isn’t always easy. If the hiring manager believes either person could manage the work, fit into the overall culture, and provide long-term value, making a decision can actually feel more challenging.
The hiring and onboarding process is costly, so hiring managers are under a notable amount of pressure to make the right decision the first time. And, when two people seem like the ideal fit, reaching a point of complete confidence in the hiring decision can take longer to than most people realize.
5. You’ve Been Eliminated from Contention
Not every company notifies the candidates that weren’t chosen. While this is often frustrating, it isn’t uncommon. Instead of letting that possibility keep you down, take some time to reflect on what went well and then get back to your search.
Time spent waiting to hear back on an interview can feel like an eternity, so it’s often best to keep your job search going regardless of how well you feel everything went. If you do end up with a job offer, and decide it’s a good fit, you can always cancel any upcoming interviews that you landed in the meantime. And, if an offer doesn’t come through, you’ve effectively already moved on by keeping your options open.