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Ever Been Ignored After an Interview?

Editorial Team | On August 17, 2009

Updated on July 18, 2023

So, you had an interview, and now there’s just… silence. We’ve all been there, and let’s face it, it’s no fun. But don’t jump to conclusions. There are a heap of reasons why you might not have heard anything yet, and not all of them are bad news. There might be internal debates happening, or maybe they’re still weighing up other candidates. Or it could just be simple office delays slowing things down.

It’s also important to acknowledge that, unfortunately, ghosting has become a common practice in the recruitment process. In fact, a recent study of 1,500 global workers found that 75% of job seekers have been ghosted by a company after an interview. Even more surprising, only 27% of U.S. employers surveyed by job listings site Indeed said they hadn’t ghosted a candidate in the past year. They openly acknowledge that they do it. So if you’re facing this silence, it is not uncommon and often does not reflect on you or your qualifications, but rather on the company’s hiring practices.

The Silence After Second Interview

You’ve made it through round two, and the radio silence is even more nerve-wracking. This is when the big decisions usually get made, so it’s normal to feel on edge. The key here is not to lose your cool. Patience is essential – don’t let the quiet get you down.

When Your Recruiter Goes MIA

Been trying to follow up with your recruiter after the post-interview silence, but they seem to have vanished? It can feel like you’re being ghosted after your interview, but don’t take it personally. Recruiters juggle multiple candidates and roles, so delays in communication can happen.

Feeling Ignored After Your Interview

Feeling like your recruiter is ignoring you after your interview is tough. You might be tempted to start second-guessing everything. Did I say something wrong? Did they not like me? But remember, what you’re feeling is common, and most often, it’s not about you at all.

When You Thought the Interview Went Well…

“I thought the interview went well, but…”. How many times have we found ourselves saying that, right? Sometimes, our read on the situation might be spot-on, but the feedback or the job offer doesn’t come through. That’s okay. Remember, each interview is a learning experience.

No Response After an Job Interview Doesn’t Always Mean Bad News

Even if you thought the interview went well, receiving no response can indeed be frustrating. But you shouldn’t jump to the conclusion that it’s bad news. The company might be working through some things behind the scenes that you’re just not privy to. As such, one of the best things you could do is to keep calm and patient. Factors such as company policy, legal obligations, or a complex decision-making process could be slowing down the response time. Importantly, it’s worth noting that the average length of the hiring process in the U.S. stands at about 23.8 days. This insight provides additional perspective and may help to ease some of the anxiety associated with waiting for a response after an interview.

When They Said They’d Call, But…

You were told you’d get a call, but the phone remains silent. You’re not alone – this is a common experience for many job-seekers. It’s easy to take it personally, but often, it’s not about you. It’s about their process, which you can’t control.

Sending That Follow-Up Email After the Interview

Taking matters into your own hands by sending a follow-up email after the interview is a proactive move. This can not only demonstrate your ongoing interest in the role but also help you gain some clarity regarding your application status.

Here are some key points to consider when crafting your follow-up email:

  1. Timing: Timing is everything. It’s generally recommended to send a follow-up email 24-48 hours after the interview, and then again about a week later if you haven’t heard back. This gives the hiring manager or recruiter sufficient time to gather their thoughts and make a decision.
  2. Tone and Content: The tone of your email should be professional and polite. Thank the interviewer for their time and the opportunity to learn more about the role. Reiterate your interest in the position and the company. Ask for an update on the status of your application, but avoid sounding desperate or pushy.
  3. Personalization: Personalize the email by mentioning something specific from your interview. This could be a topic that was discussed or a skill set that was highlighted as important for the role. This shows the interviewer that you were attentive and took away important points from the interview.
  4. Proofread: Before sending the email, ensure you’ve proofread it for any errors. You want your communication to be as professional as your interview. Grammar, punctuation, and spelling errors can leave a bad impression.
  5. Closing: End the email on a positive note, expressing your continued enthusiasm for the role and your hope to hear back soon.

Your follow-up email can often be a deciding factor, tipping the balance in your favor. It’s a way to remind the hiring manager of your interview and express your genuine interest in the position.

Navigating Through Post-Interview Silence: A Summary

Navigating through the silence that often follows an interview can certainly test your patience. It’s important to remember that this quiet period is not necessarily indicative of rejection. There are numerous reasons for delays in the hiring process, most of which are out of your control.

Instead of succumbing to anxiety during this period, focus on the things you can control, like following up professionally, staying positive, and continuing to search for other job opportunities. Rejection or acceptance, remember that every interview is a stepping stone towards your career goals. So, keep your spirits high, stay patient, and keep moving forward.

Handling the Wait: What to Do When There’s No Response After an Interview

  1. Stay Calm and Patient: The first tip is to stay calm and patient after your interview. Understand that the process can take time. Recruiters and hiring managers have many tasks on their hands, and the hiring process often involves many steps. Rushing or pressuring them won’t speed things up.
  2. Follow Up Politely: If there’s complete silence after your interview, send a follow-up email. This shows you’re still interested in the position and eager to know the outcome. Keep it professional and courteous. Don’t be pushy, and avoid flooding their inbox. One follow-up email a week after your interview, then maybe a gentle reminder two weeks later if you still haven’t heard back, should suffice.
  3. Keep Your Expectations Realistic: You may feel your interview went well, but remember, the final decision often involves many factors. Your performance is just one part of the equation. The company might also be considering how well you’d fit into the team, your salary expectations, and other internal considerations.
  4. Stay Positive: It’s normal to feel down if you thought the interview went well but received no response. Keep in mind that this is a common scenario. The key is not to lose your positivity. Maintain a positive mindset and remember that every interview, whether it leads to a job offer or not, is a valuable experience.
  5. Consider a Second Follow Up: If your recruiter ignores your first follow-up email, you might feel like they’re ghosting you after the interview. It might be worth sending a second follow-up email or making a phone call to remind them of your interest.
  6. Reach Out to Other Contacts: If you’ve got no response after your second interview, consider reaching out to other contacts within the organization, if you have any. They may be able to provide insights or at least ensure your follow-up is seen by the decision-makers.
  7. Reflect on Your Interview Performance: If you’re being ignored at work, or if your interviews don’t seem to be leading anywhere, take some time to reflect on your interview skills. There’s always room for improvement, and this could be a great opportunity to identify areas you can work on for future interviews.
  8. Keep Applying to Other Jobs: Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Continue applying for other positions that interest you. This can help alleviate some of the stress and anxiety associated with the waiting period after an interview.
  9. Seek Feedback: If the company eventually decides not to move forward with your application, don’t be afraid to ask for feedback. While not all companies will provide it, constructive feedback can be invaluable for future interviews.
  10. Keep Improving Your Skills: Use the waiting period constructively. Keep improving your skills and qualifications relevant to the job market. This will not only enhance your employability but also keep you productive while you wait for a response.

Check out other articles by best-selling authors:

Dawn Rasmussen – Top Five Questions About Resumes Answered

Sunny Lurie – Eight Proven Strategies to Open the Door to a Vibrant New Career

Stacia Pierce – How to Search for a Job During the Holidays

Dawn Quesnel- Helpful Hints for Job Seekers

Stacia Pierce – Conceit vs. Confidence


  1. Consummate Question-Asker

    I’ve just put the finishing touches on Resume/Cover Letter #125.
    Since being laid-off at the end of January this year (2009), I’ve had plenty of time to think about who I am, what I can do and where I want to go in the next level of my career. While working full-time, I also went back to school, and am just finishing up a long overdue degree in Corporate Communications. As a result, I was poised to transition into a new role with my (then) employers when the economy went elsewhere…and so did my job.
    I’ve had two face-to-face interviews and one hopeful telephone interview with both the department hiring manager and the HR recruiter for one of the companies I’d REALLY like to work with. Although, the interviews appeared to go well and I was poised to go to the next level of the interview, I never heard back from any of them. I followed up with a “thank you” note/call/email, however, any subsequent attempts on my part to reach out were ignored. Although, I’m not an HR Professional, I know there are many of us qualified folks out of work and seeking re-employment, but I wonder, along with the “new economy”,is this now the “new etiquette”?
    I’ve had a successful, nearly 20 year career in IT, including most recently managing information systems for my aforementioned former employers. As a wearer-of-many hats, I’ve always sought opportunities to learn and grow in any position I’ve held within a firm – I’m the “go to gal”, the “how does that work?” question-asker. Consequently, I’ve held jobs with escalating responsibilities – and compensation increases to match. Apparently, that seems to be the issue.
    Finding myself in a(n) unique opportunity to finally realize my dream job and to transition out of IT and into a likely Corporate Communications position, it seems this “new economy” also includes new math. The equation being that what I made on my last job is directly related to my skill set in the job I’m applying for…hmmmm…had I known about this early on in my job search, maybe my response to the “what did you make on your last job” question would have been less direct. I’m not saying to be dishonest, but should my skill set and what I bring to the table in a new position have a direct correlation to the compensation on my last job? So, how to get around that tricky question?
    One possible answer is, “This opportunity isn’t exactly like my last job, so would you be willing to talk about what my responsibilities would be here and then let’s discuss a fair salary for this job?” Of course, there are other likely answers – and questions – about the $$ issue, like, “what are your salary expectations, etc.?”
    So, what about my job application #125? Well, in my book, all those “no’s” are just getting me closer to the yes! Optimism – and determination – two of my key identifiers…I’ll find my dream job…networking, asking questions, attending job fairs – and staying connected (including posting comments…like this!) will get me there. I know there’s an HR person out there, ready to pick up the phone to call me now!
    However, I’m not waiting for that call or the other shoe to drop in the employment department, I’ve created my own presence: 4Paradigms. Interested in other ways to broach that salary question? Feel free to stop by my website, see what I’m doing and send me an email. I’d be glad to help in anyway.

  2. Meg

    This has happened to me twice but there were no recruiters involved. The first time I had 3 interviews. The last one ended with him saying, “You haven’t accepted any other offers yet, have you? OK, here’s what I’m going to do: call your references tomorrow morning and call you in the afternoon.” He never called my references and never called me back! I sent him a follow-up e-mail, then waited a few days and left a voice mail, and he completely blew me off. I also compared it to dating. What did I do wrong? It made me want to stalk him and hang out by the door to his office to make him tell me what happened. I sure didn’t want it to happen again … and it may have. I had another great interview 2 weeks ago, sent a thank you note the next day, waited a week and sent a follow-up e-mail, waited another week and called, and was put in voice mail. That was last week and he hasn’t had the courtesy to reply even if just to say he’s not done interviewing!. I don’t know how much more of this I can take.

  3. This has been an issue since I graduated from college many years ago and started interviewing. I continue to hear the same lament from jobseekers–even those who eventually do find employment–to this day. Unfortunately, I believe this will continue to be the case. So long as companies have the hiring advantage, we are at their mercy.
    That’s not to say that companies and recruiters go out of their way to be like this; there are several factors at play, including, as noted in this piece, the volume of applications a company can get for just one position.
    Also, I really think that some recruiters have problems conveying bad news, so they ignore all the phone calls, emails, etc., from applicants and hope that the applicant will go away. Which, eventually, an applicant most likely will.
    Having been in the same position myself (interviewed for a job; told I was a “perfect fit”; returned for subsequent interviews; etc.), I know the situation all too well. The thing is to not take it personally. Instead, try to turn it to a positive: you got this far with a company, so you must be brilliant! Like a person who won’t return your call after a date, think of it as “hey, it’s your loss, buddy.”

  4. DonnaJGamache

    It is demoralizing, but I’m going to say that it may be unavoidable for the people at the other end. Support staff is often skimpy in all but the large corporations, and in medium/small ones there is often not an HR person, or if there is, that person wears a lot of hats, is his/her own support staff, and the same can be said of the dept. heads who do the interviewing. Everybody’s overloaded, screening resumes & interviewing is hugely time consuming on top of that, and the person is probably already working overtime just to do their normal full-time job. So, if you don’t hear, just assume you didn’t get the job. Move on, and don’t take it as a deeply personal gesture of disapproval. I’m sure it’s not.

  5. HRTampa

    Yes, it is “Sweet Justice” that those recruiters who ignored job seekers in the past are getting a dose of their own medicine.
    It’s simply common courtesy to return a phone call to anyone who has invested their time with you regardless if it’s a phone interview or an in person interview. No one and I mean no one should be in Human Resources if they can not be respectful of people and their time. It only takes a couple of minutes to make a phone call or at the very least fill out a form letter thanking the candidate for their time and letting them know that “a better candidate has been chosen”. In my previous life as an HR Specialist, I became very aware of how an organization treated me when I went for an interview. There were numerous times when I wouldn’t have even accepted a position if it had been offered because of the attitude of the people who had interviewed me. There are so many people who should NOT be interviewing potential employees. I tell my friends who are seeking to make a career change, you must approach interviewing with the attitude that you are interviewing the employer. You don’t need to be arrogant but know that you only want to work with a company that will value you as a person and respect the time that you have given to them to learn more about how you might be able to help their company. It’s so very hard not to take it personally but you simply can’t let it. I know far too many totally competent and capable people who have yet to secure a position with the “right organization”. It’s not their fault…it’s the “ding dongs” they have doing the hiring!

  6. Patricia

    I had a phone screen followed by two additional interviews with the hiring manager. Then advised I was moving to the next level (meeting his team). A month of calls and messages to the assistant went by with every excuse in the book. Vacations, meetings, travel, food poisoning, I was amazed that she had all these excuses and her job was just to set an appointment. Then I cc’d the HR manager who left this to her, and voila, I got final 2 interviews within 48 hours!
    Its not always bad!

  7. LJ

    This one I HAD to respond to! If I didn’t know better I would swear that it was written by my roommate…or even by me! We have both had the same experience and share the frustration. And its not only the result of a great face to face interview, but great phone INTERVIEWS as well. Especially in todays market when its so hard to even get your resume seen, to finally be acknowledged by a recruiter or hiring manager can really lift your spirits. But then to be completely ignored AFTER you’ve had the initial conversation/interview is like pouring salt in the wound. When I myself was a recruiter for a major fortune 150 company, I knew the challenges of having hundreds of people apply to one position. There is NO WAY that every applicant can receive a personal call. However, I built my reputation on delivering great customer service, and that included a personal follow up with every person that I contacted for a phone screen and /or interview. Once you (the recruiter) makes contact, the “applicant” becomes a real person! Being a job hunter is stressful enough, but being made to feel so bluntly “unwanted” and wondering what happened is simply cruel. These recruiters that reach out to people and then don’t have the simple respect for people to say “you are not the right fit for this particular opportunity” are not seeing the big picture. First of all, you are kicking someone when he/she is already down. Second, you are offending a potential customer of your company or client. And third, you are showing potential future clients how you treat people…think about it. Those of us who care about the impression we leave with prospective candidates, etc will NOT be calling you when we’re back in a position to decide which headhunters/agencies we’ll partner with.

  8. Gaylean Woods

    I think we have all had some of the same experiences. I have had several just like this. It is hurtful to receive a thanks you are good, but not good enough letter or e-mail (it’s what I call them)and not know what is meant by that. It is even worse when you never hear back and you have tried to follow-up. I have overcome the good enough syndrome, but it is hard to forgive the rude. I know that for every one job posting there are about 10 applicants and it may be a big job to reach out to every one who does not get the position. Here is an idea, hire someone to reach out to the others. That would be a creative way to hire someone. In these times we have to keep our heads up. It is a great time to start your own. Take a look at what you do best and maybe hire yourself out to companies as a contractor to do some of the work that you are applying for. Network, network, network. Everybody knows someone else. Tell friends, family, former co-workers what you are looking for and ask them to keep their eyes and ears open for some opportunities.

  9. Gaylean Woods

    Here is also another thought. I often wanted to call these people back and give them a piece of my mind since it is obvious that I did not get the position. Has anyone ever wanted to do the same thing? would I be wrong for that?

  10. Susan

    I have interviewed, hired and fired people, as well as having been on the receiving end. So, ladies, here’s what I think..get over it! It’s not a date , not your rejecting husband/boyfriend, mother/father…it’s business, and some do it well, and some don’t. Also- please don’t assume it was you who did something wrong. You need to separate out your feelings, assumptions and “poor me” default positions from your goals and keep moving. And you have no idea what the bosses decide from one minute to the next about their bottom line, number of positions they can afford, etc.
    Lastly, if they do business that way, maybe you don’t want to work for them anyway.
    Keep visioning the perfect place for you!!

  11. DonnaJGamache

    1. It would be not dumb but stupid to call and give someone a piece of your mind, when you don’t get the job, and don’t hear back. Maybe you projected that kind of poor judgment in interview … ? Here’s an idea: How about asking for tips on your interviewing techniques, after the job is filled, and the hiring manager has enough help to talk to you about it? How about then asking for any referrals to other positions s/he may know about, and which are not being advertised?
    2. If you think there are “10 applicants” for each job, you’ve obviously never been on the hiring side of the desk. Try 100-500 (100 in a good economy, 500 today.)
    3. What a sweet idea, i.e., try hiring someone to get back to everyone. News flash: Support staff, i.e., staff who do not bill for their time and make money for the company, are the last hired, first to go, and always in short supply in all but the largest companies. That’s why you’re not hearing back if you don’t get hired: Nobody has the staff to get back to all those applying, and people are already working long hours without the added job of screening applicants and interviewing, etc.

  12. Andrea

    It’s really frustrating and depressing out here. I was beginning to think I was doing something wrong. In the past 17-1/2 mos, I have applied for 350 jobs, been on fewer then 20 interviews, done maybe 4 phone interviews & can count on one hand the number of letters I have received in the mail stating someone else was picked for the job. I was getting so upset that I told someone that I was going to email everyone that had not responded to me and tell them just exactly how I felt, once I finally did get a job. It’s not that I am not qualified, in many cases, I am over qualified. I have over 30 years experience in one field and over 9 in a second. If I had my choice, I would rather stay home and make scrapbooks or make my jewelry, but that is not something that will support my son & I and will not pay for his remaining 2 years of college. I’ve been to 16 weeks of networking workshops put on by a local community college, attended almost every job fair there has been in my area, including the GMA job fair sponcered by Woman for Hire a few months ago. My family and friends have been supportave, but the frustration level continues to raise. Most employment agencies make you feel like a piece of crap, not worthy of any job so the real search is up to you.
    Good luck everyone.

  13. Erika

    YES! All of the above HR/Recruiter situations have happened to me as well over the last 6 months. I have even gotten to the point of filling out info for background checks after the potential employer says they love me and then the word either comes (sorry we went with someone else that was a better fit) or does not come at all. When it does not come – I am left thinking – did I do something wrong or did my reference say something bad about me? So that is my question to anyone – how does one know if the reference said something not so flattering perhaps even “off the record” to a potential employer? What are my options or rights? Any ideas?

  14. VH

    Okay, I can relate to everything being said and many of you ladies. I feel like a used car by the recruiters.

  15. JB

    Unless I missed something in the last 35+ years of my employment life, rude is still rude no matter how you slice it. I don’t care if they have 10,000 applicants for each job, the hiring manager owes the person they interviewed at least a form letter or phone call. They do not interview the many people who apply, so the ones they do deserve the respect of a rejection at least. Those of you who think otherwise, shame on you. If that is where the world is headed, no wonder we are in the shape we are in! I am appalled that anyone thinks people should just “get over it and move on” without at least venting frustration about this subject! What is wrong with being upset about being ignored after spending the time to interview, follow up and write a thank you?
    I think the business world needs to really take a look at how cruel they have become. People are really trusting that they will do the right thing but obviously, this is not the case. How sad and how frightening!

  16. Kendra Gessel

    I know how that feels. I have been on tons of interview and never get a response. I always think that its something I did wrong. I never know what the outcome is.

  17. Renee

    Well, sometimes not hearing is best……after 2 very lengthy interviews with the hiring manager of a financial management company, two interviews that went very well, I received a letter that stated the following: “Thank you for interviewing with our company. After interviewing several qualified candidates, lucky for us, we hired one of them.”
    Short and simple…but a slap in the face…I never received a letter like that before or since, but I think I would have rather not heard.

  18. Karin

    I have recently interviewed with many others for a job. The liar said she would “get back to me in a week” I went to their website and it said the job was no longer open. It is business for me to not patronize this establishment. All they need to do is program a server to send a one sentence email thanking the applicants “but you were not selected.” What jerks

  19. Bea

    This has happened to me serveral times. One of the things it makes me wonder, si if this is how they treat potential employees and potential customers would I really want to work there. It can be very taxing. I was recently hired and kept contact with the external recruiter and internal recruiter. While following up on the position it would be days before I heard fro the external, if at all. But you know once I got the position the recruiter was in constant contact.

  20. Pat

    I have worked for over 25 years in HR and would never purposely leave a candidate ‘hanging.’ I read everyone’s comments and share their frustration.
    Two years ago I was asked to give a presentation on Recruiting and Employment Etiquette — and in my presentation I stressed the importance of ‘image’ and ‘courtesy’ as qualities that can set an organization apart from others.
    Many organizations don’t understand the role HR plays in helping to market an organization. How well candidates are treated during the hiring process can strongly influence their impression of the organization and their service or product buying decisions.
    I stress to my clients that anyone who has contact with a candidate (and I mean anyone – receptionist, cleaning staff, cafeteria staff, employees, managers, etc.) must present the organization as professionally as possible. This is especially critical if the organization wants to hire people who are the best fit with the job and the organization’s culture.
    On the other side, I have encountered candidates who did not return phone calls in a timely manner or at all, did not show up for interviews on time or at all and did not call, who went through the entire interview process all the way to where a job offer was accepted, and even who accepted the offer, and then declined.
    Some advice to those of you who made it to the in person interview:
    *At the end of the interview be prepared with intelligent questions to ask the organization. These questions should help you evaluate how well the job and the culture fit you and your needs.
    *Make sure you truly understand the job — the job requirements, the upside and downside of the job, where it fits in the organization, why it is open, why the last person left the position, etc.
    *Do a recap of your strengths and accomplishments and clearly link them to the requirements of the job.
    *Sell yourself!
    *Ask for the job! At the end of the interview you could say something like: “I believe that I am the best candidate for this job. Now that you have a good understanding of my skills, abilities, and experience, please tell me the concerns that you have about hiring me for this position. I’d like to be able to address them before I leave today.”
    *Always send a thank you. Don’t lower your standards even if the organization has not been professional.
    Lastly, understand that the organization has only one open position and may have 2 or 3 good candidates. A decision must be made – and hopefully it is the right decision for everyone. I recall times when the candidate selected did not really work out as well as hoped and therefore either resigned or was asked to leave in 2, 4, or even 6 months. An organization with a strong hiring process will usually go back to the other finalists at that time to see if they are still available and interested. This is another reason for organizations to treat candidates well, and also for candidates to keep a high standard of professionalism even after the interview process.

  21. Pincushion

    Now I am being ignored by THIS SITE — Twice I have taken quite a bit of time to write something, only to be blown off! What’s up?

  22. Zee Holloway

    I had this big interview with a fortune 200 company. The first step was passing a phone screen conducted from the out of state headquarters. Next we sent three days of emails preparing for the interview, this time in person. I made contact with the local recruiter and followed all the normal protocol. Day of the interview I had car trouble and called a cab to get me to the interview location. Despite bad winter weather I made the interview on time. After announcing my arrival, the local recruiter stated she was not informed of any interviews scheduled for that day. She then asked me if I was a temporary hire. When I produced a copy of our email conversations over the last three days, she “remembered” and then gave me a rushed, poor interview. I left and was glad I never heard from this group again.

  23. Tamiko

    These are horrible instances, and I can recall the hurt I felt after multiple, in-person interviews that went smooth as butter but, no follow-up. As one of the many seeking a job, I am actually grateful to receive that server-generated rejection letter because so many companies are not even confirming that they’ve received your resume. Let’s stay resilient and optimistic.

  24. Lorraine

    Pat the HR Mgr said “I have encountered candidates who did not return phone calls in a timely manner…did not show up for interviews on time….went through the entire interview process all the way to where a job offer was accepted, and even who accepted the offer, and then declined.”
    So does this make it ok for HR’s rudeness and lack of common courtesy? I think what I’m hearing there is “So HR is bad but (some) candidates are worse.”
    C’mon! The key thing here is the sheer frustration felt by job seekers, who are up against a wall in terms of real opportunities and their inability to get past the HR gatekeepers. It is unacceptable for any company represantative to treat a candidate in this manner, let alone HR.
    The resume black hole is deep enough — throw away the shovel and treat every candidate with decency and respect. Companies need to take recruiting & interviewing out of the hands of HR and give it to the hiring manager. Compliance, federal/state reporting, training, and record-keeping belong in HR.

  25. Valerie

    I also had a face-to-face interview with an Office Manager. She thought I was very qualified for the position and wanted to hire me, however, I needed to meet with her Manager. She went to his office to notify him I was ready to speak with him but he wasn’t available. I left the office and immediately sent my thank you note to her indicating I was very interested in meeting her Manager. I followed up with telephone calls and emails and never received a reply. I think common courtesy has “gone done the drain” and both sides (employer and job seeker) should remember this.

  26. Sara

    I had this happen recently. I had my first interview, it went well until they asked how much I currently earn and how much I wanted to earn. I’m convinced I heard them choke before asking, “is that straight pay, without bonus?” When I confirmed, I was convinced I would not hear from them again. A week later they called me back for a second interview. The interviewer kept telling me how facinated he was with my experience and answers. I sent a very nice thank you note to each of them and never heard from them again. I guess they found someone else more facinating, but it would have been nice to get some kind of response.
    On another note, I applied for a job with one of the big alcohol companies. I received a letter telling me how nice it was to meet me and how great my interview was, but they have chosen another candidate. Ummmmmm, I never interviewed with them, only applied. I’m thinking they are using too much of their own product.

  27. I see that this discussion dates back a few weeks, so I don’t know whether anyone is sitll following it, but I simply have to add my own comment:
    I too have been out of work for more than a year, having been laid off last May. I too have more than 30 years of exceptional experience with terrific accomplishments. I too have applied for literally hundreds of jobs. I too have experienced the frustration of not just the resume black hole but the post-interview black hole as well. And I too have felt myself beginning to doubt myself …
    BUT …
    that is the absolute worst thing we can do! As women we are conditioned to always assume blame when anything goes wrong. If we weren’t contacted, then clearly we were not selected forthe position, but this by no means suggests that there is anything at all wrong with us or that we should even consider changing in any way.
    The very fact that the original post compared post-interview silence as similar to dating situations shows how backwards this kind of thinking is. If they haven’t contacted you — whether “they” is a company or a date — there is something wrong with THEM, not with YOU!
    In this horrific job market, we simply must keep our attitude positive, because it shows on our faces, in our voices and in our body language every time we interact with someone, including that interviewer across the table.
    I recently interviewed with a CEO who mentioned that, while her organization normally receives some 10-20 resumes for any job posting, she had received more than 300 for this job, due to the current job market.
    Buck up, women! You’re not “broken”!

  28. Sofia

    I had a great first and a second interview.The hiring manager told me they had already contacted all of my references and they were waiting for their replies.I am very confident that my references would have given me an excellent recommendation. The hiring manager told me to call her back on Sept 30th and when i did…no response what so ever.I emailed her and called her office and cell phone.As she had given me the cell number in case i wouldn’t be able to reach her on the land-line.It’s been a week now and needless to say i am shocked at her behavior.The organization i applied to is a top notch organization in the U.S.A.
    I mean come on people i get it that the times are hard but common courtesy demands it that if you told some one to call you please respond.I was so stressed out for the two days while i was waiting for her to respond.Needless to say she never did and i just moved on.

    • Maureen Jane Carey

      Just report people to the BBB.

  29. Felton Hoppa

    Genuinely contented with your post. It is a thing that I’d been searching for.

  30. KC

    Just another indication of the rude, crude society in which so many find themselves unemployed. Most of these employers wouldn’t be worth the time of day in normal times. Write an anonoymous letter and vent it out of your system. These employers need to see themselves for the skanks they are.

  31. Hiring Manager

    I’m a hiring manager and will share some feedback as to why you didn’t get the job after a “great interview.” First, let me state that the HR department should send an email to anyone that didn’t get the job so the candidate is not left wondering if the job was filled. Sadly that doesn’t always happen which is unfortunate.

    Now, here is some behind the scenes feedback. First, just because you think you had a great interview, the hiring manager may not see it that way. It’s possible that your answers were not in line with what I was looking for, but I am not going to tell you that. Instead, I may ask another question or two around a certain topic to probe more and if I don’t like what I hear, I’ll know pretty quickly that you’re not the right fit – but I will never tell you this because I don’t want an argument. Instead, I smile, at the end of the interview, state that I still have more candidates to meet with, say it was nice to meet you and then thank you for your time.

    Secondly, a lot of the time we already have an internal candidate lined up for the role but for legal reasons, HR makes us interview you along with one or two other candidates anyway. It’s not fair to you because you are given false hope by being invited for an interview – yet I know before I even walk into the interview room that you’re not getting hired. This happens more often than you think, but we’ll never tell you that.

    Thirdly, you did have a genuine great interview and I liked you. But guess what? Another candidate also had a great interview and for whatever reason, we just clicked a little bit better than I did with you. The chemistry was better for whatever reason. So although you did great and I really did like you, I’m going to go with the other candidate.

    Fourth – you did great in the interview and I liked you, but another candidate who was referred to me by a trusted colleague also did great. Referrals go a long way (yes, it’s who you know sometimes) and it could be the reason you weren’t hired.

    Finally, sometimes during the hiring process, the budget gets cut and the job gets pulled. Absolutely no fault of yours but unfortunately, it simply came down to bad timing.

    I hope this helps shed a little light on why you didn’t get the job. I know rejection isn’t fun (I know what that’s like as I didn’t always get the job either) – but the bottom line is that if you don’t hear back after a week to ten days after an interview, you most likely didn’t get the job. Believe me, if we like you, we will call you. If you truly are in the running, we will keep in touch. We didn’t forget to call and no, we didn’t lose your contact info.

    The good news is that you will land a job at some point, so keep your chin up, keep applying and never give up. Stay positive and network every chance you get. Good luck!

    • Maureen Jane Carey

      That’s all fine and great, but can you explain the rudeness of hiring managers choosing to ignore emails and follow-up emails to people seeking you?

      It’s just common courtesy and decency to respond to others. Otherwise, they may get the feeling that they are intentionally being ignored and decide to get the BBB involved for rudeness towards potential job-seekers.

    • Reallady

      Reading your post makes me know exactly why people got fed up and left the jobs and many people are refusing to go on interviews anymore and just starting their own businesses. It is toxic to waste people time having them go to an interview though you know you aren’t hiring them and already have someone in mind. It is manipulative and tricking the system and companies need fined for it. Trying to make the system think you gave everyone a shot is manipulative.

  32. Jules

    Everything was so on track. I submitted my application on the 18th, had an email from the HR person the very next day, scheduling an interview. Had my first phone interview on Thursday – went great. Second one was scheduled the following Monday. Also went great – I spoke with the actual prospective supervisor, who told me he was very impressed with my resume and asked how quickly I could start. We were very much on the same page with respect to salary requirements. He said we’d be “speaking again very soon.” That was a week and two follow-up emails ago, to which he never responded. I hate when this happens.

    • Jane

      I empathise your situation. I’ve too been through this.

      Guess the best is to move on and continue to apply for jobs until we hit one.

  33. Jo

    This is an ongoing situation for me. I finally found a great job, applied, got to interview. I declined a Skype interview and instead made (and paid for) a 5-hour journey to the location and stayed a night in a hotel to attend the interview. I don’t have money to burn. The interview went really well. Almost two weeks later I’ve had no response, not even a reply to my follow up email. I don’t care what excuses people make – there IS no excuse whatsoever in this day and age to not keep in touch with candidates. Email takes a matter of seconds to write and send. It’s downright rude and unacceptable. I’ve Googled this problem and read every excuse under the sun. It’s nonsense. Email takes no time at all out of your day, even if it’s simply to let someone know the process is taking a little longer than anticipated. Fine. But don’t give me an interview then ignore me!

  34. Sarah

    Just recently I felt I had an interview that went really well. I’m a recent college graduate and I’m really feeling the pressure that I should have a job by now. I’ve been applying senior year and I finally heard from somewhere I applied in March (at a college fair) to July. I answered every question pertaining to the resume and skill set asked for on the job. I reviewed and practiced what they were looking for and I genuinely thought it went well. She had called me the day before and I went to the interview a day later and I was only 2 minutes late. (I’m currently an unpaid intern) She said she’d let me know by the end of the week but its been almost a month! I called– left a voicemail and I sent an email — no response! I really went in really confident and now not so much. I’m really worried and I don’t know what I did wrong? …Is it b/c I mentioned how much I’ve helped my mother when she was sick and how her loss is what motivates me to help others? Is it because I said that I looked into the company and I appreciated what they do…? Why is finding a job so hard? I feel so useless… :'(

    • kay

      Hi Sarah
      I hope you know you are not alone. I too went on a job interview — got a second interview with the same company — had the girl who interviewed me tell me she would let me know her decision either way, she had one more interview scheduled for the next day. Have a heard from her?? Nope. Even though it all went so well. I even called to follow up a week later … she “wasn’t at her desk” and she’d have to call me back. Did I get a call back? Nope. All I want to hear is no you did not get the job or we are still interviewing or we still haven’t came to a decision. But nothing. Please lack respect and common decency. Why waste someone’s time TWICE just to ignore them?? And in both interviews they were so excited acting like I’d be so perfect for the position. They give you false hope and it isn’t fair. It happens to the best of us I guess.

    • Maureen Jane Carey

      I know, I can’t figure others out and they love to play games with you too. I really think that they get off on making people wait and wonder and wonder what you may have possibly said. Of course, they won’t tell you. Their favorite game is to make you guess what you did wrong.

      I usually just end up reporting everyone.

  35. LD

    Thank you for your posts as I was unaware of just how often people do not hear back after multiple interviews. I have just experienced a string of interviews, including two phone interviews followed by the director flying to my city to meet me and discuss strategies. He basically offered me the job after that meeting as we were clearly on the same page. However, a few days later he emailed me to say the CEO wanted to meet me (8 hrs travel to another city). I thought that meeting went really well, but apparently the CEO thought I was “overconfident”. Of course I was, I had already spent 7 hours talking to the director and discussed all their strategies. Following the first interview, the director had spoken to three of my referees, and now asked me to supply two more. He called me after speaking to those, told me they had spoken of me highly and he would have another discussion with the CEO. I have never heard from them again…it really made me think about what it would be like to work for the company… when a 20 minute meeting with the CEO overrides the opinion of the director I would be working with day-to-day.

  36. Maureen Jane Carey

    I have had to report several people to the Better Business Bureau for their rudeness and lack of manners. Especially if you’ve sent them message and wait, message and wait, message and wait and you never hear back from them.

    All they’re doing is to show me that they don’t care what their clients and potential clients are saying to me like they’re not worthy of a response from them which is not only rude, unprofessional but also gets people pissed off and angry.

    There is no honest and direct communication, so there is no way for you to have a dialogue with them at all because they are holding back on you which is immature and childish as well. It’s like they want you to guess what you did to make them not want to respond to you. At that point, I see them as the enemy rather than a potential ally and usually end up reporting or suing if the need should arise.

  37. Lu

    It’s extremely demoralizing to the applicants that the employer who interviewed them did not even care to reply to a follow-up. It could be a simple cut and paste of a canned email and that would be sufficed. Employers owed it to the applicants, especially after they have wasted the applicants’ time and effort to go at great length trying to make a great impression. I too have been to many interviews and no replies. Someday, these people will be on the other end of the spectrum and they will wish that they have treated their applicants better. I love how companies and these hiring managers pride themselves as great but yet they don’t even do the simplest task, respect others! I am looking to start my own business so that I can work for myself and don’t depend on these type of employers, far too many of them out there! You can also be sure that I will not support their business because of these poor practices.

  38. Vicky

    I know this article was published some time ago, but it definitely resonates to what I’ve gone through recently. I feel upset, yes, that I took half a day off from my day job to attend an interview that was essentially a waste of time. To me it signals a great amount of disrespect and lack of professionalism to treat a prospective employee like this – remember, this is a two way street.

    Rather than sit around and twiddle my thumbs, I called the company to hear them out. I was met with a ridiculous explanation as to why I wasn’t chosen, so much so I had to contain my utter amazement and laughter.

    Having seen this utterly immature behavior, all I can say is that I’m happy I went through this. I would never want to work for a company that is so unprofessional that they can’t take the time to send out an automated email, let alone taking 2 minutes to write a simple ‘Thanks, but no thanks.’

    If I can take out half my day to see your company, an employer can take 2 minutes to call or write an email. As for the the ‘legal’ fears and ‘oh we’re so busy’ excuses – that’s a very poor excuse in my opinion.


  39. Zack

    Great blog. Women tend to be emotional creatures. Girls toughen up. Nice interview does not equal job. Focus on competencies. Smart business women see through BS and games. No multiple follow ups, endless interviews etc. learn to be mean and selfish and to say ‘no’ to these jerks oh I mean potential employers. The world is a cruel place nobody owes you anything. It is cut-throat and competitive out there. Nice and dandy will assure you are kicked to curb! All these posts say “interview went really well”. Really? This tells me you have no idea. When an interview goes really well the employer reaches out quickly like 1 or 2 days later. When they give you specific times they will call and do not. Ladies it is over. They must initiate contact after otherwise you lose all credibility and desirability. Think a date says something like let’s hang out sometime next week at end of 1st date. Then after not hearing from them a week later you are keen to reconnect. What do you think date will think about you? Now you have your answer. Good luck!

  40. HRjerk

    Reading these posts makes me laugh on different levels… I’ve been the frustrated jerk candidate, funds dwindling, student loans looming; was told “we are not looking to hire someone who just needs a job”. Must be nice to be one of those jerks who work but don’t need to work, huh? I’ve taken time off and traveled to interviews only to have the interviewer talk down to me about my education and experiences. I’ve been nitpicked by “HR People” who can not even follow a resume and make sense of it. Jerks.

    I’ve also been the jerk HR recruiter who can’t give the candidate a respectful and timely yes or no, because the jerk hiring manager is “too busy” to look at the resume shortlist or refusing to schedule interviews. Should have been telling those candidates to run. not telling them what a good place to work it was. What a jerk was I.

    Candidates do some jerky weirdo things too:
    -like call every single day starting the day they apply online in an attempt to force an interview
    -call demanding to “arrange an interview” even though lacking most of the job’s requirements
    -show up to an interview wearing holy, dirty sweats or other jerk attire
    -show up to the interview with their bluetooth ear thing attached to their big jerk head
    -interview with a toothpick, stick, blade of grass, etc hanging out of their mouth
    -assume that agency recruiters’ job is to “find them a job” (it’s not, it is to find qualified jerks to fill the company’s existing jobs)
    -assume that the internal interviewer/recruiter’s only responsibility is recruiting (its not, they juggle 18 other things each day)
    -call to check on an application LITERALLY 6 minutes after applying online
    -call to “check on application status” 3,4,7 months after applying
    -curse out the recruiter if not selected

    It is a tough process, I know. Jerks abound. Just try to resist the urge to act like a jerk.

  41. Stephanie

    I wouldn’t want to work for people who are so inconsiderate and rude. You have to brownnose during the interview, make sure you say all the right things, be subjected to judgment from the “team” if multiple people are interviewing you and be subjected to invasions of your privacy with background checks and jumping through umpteen hoops to land a job, so you can pay your bills. The so called “American Dream” is more like an American nightmare. People are cruel, judgmental and rude knowing you need money to live, while they have that. Karma is a you know what, though and should they find the shoe on the other foot, I hope Karma works her magic.

  42. Joe

    I think over the last 12 years I have had 6 on-site interviews, of which 0 of the 5 companies bothered to let me know the job had been filled! In 2 cases, they would not reply to phone or email. I start with the 6th company Monday btw.

    In all cases, I had several off site phone interviews, significant travel and use of vacation time (I was employed during all) to get to the interviews and half to full day interviews with multiple people. I was also among a handful of final applicants, even down to 2.

    it is nothing less than unprofessional not to give interviewees the courtesy of a simple email that the job has been filled by another.

  43. Ann Kemp

    I REALLY nailed a job interview Friday. It was after an initial phone interview. It was 10 min from my house, the two interviewers and I had chemistry, everyone was chuckling and nodding. They couldn’t believe I would work for just $17/hour for them. They literally were astonished at my resume – a mixture of office administration, customer service, accounting, software knowledge AND a very specific hobby of mine which was IN THEIR FIELD. (An unusual one for a woman.) They asked my availability. We shook hands. Ended on a HIGH note! “We’ll be in touch!!” Now – it’s a GHOST TOWN. My family texts me almost hourly, “Did ya hear back yet?!” I’m numb.

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