Why You Didn’t Get The Job Even After A Great Interview

Ok, I know that there are some obviously answers to this question. You know that you bombed the interview if:

  • You asked to pass on a question or asked to phone a friend for help
  • You asked for a few minutes of silence so you can look over your resume
  • Any of these Top 10 Reasons

The Perfect Interview

It’s pretty clear that you bombed an interview if you did something or said something that made you immediately undesirable or unqualified for the job. Unfortunately we all can remember putting our foot in our mouths and blurting out some insanely personal story or flirting with the recruiter, ok well maybe not everyone flirts with the recruiter (flirting with the recruiter is an automatic job offer :)…ok not really…seriously folks don’t flirt cause it makes things awkward).

I’m talking about the interviews that you know you did perfect in. I mean so perfect that you wish it was recorded and could be submitted to the International Olympic Committee and then awarded a gold medal without actually doing anything athletic. The point is, if you did so well why weren’t you hired?! The most common reasons you may not get the job, which you have no control over is because of target hires and/or nepotism. Even if Recruiters already know who is going to get hired we still have to go through “fake interviews”. This is to make sure that the target hire is actually the perfect candidate, which is not always the case but we are forced to hire them anyway.

I Blame the Hiring Manager

Hiring managers can be funny people to work with. Sometimes the power to hire whoever they want gets into their head. As a recruiter I need to find candidates that I think can do the job. Hiring managers sometimes want to hire their friends or family even though they are not qualified for the job. I understand the pressure to hire people you know but at the end of the day I need to be confident that the person I suggest and vote for will not be sitting infront of HR again discussing grounds for termination. If this “friend” or target hire doesn’t work out it looks bad for the person who suggested them. I care about my reputation too much to be pressured to hire a friend who isn’t qualified.

Three ways to tell if you are not going to get the job:

  1. You Are Only Interviewed By The Recruiter

    If a manager is not present and you are only sitting face-to-face or on a phone interview with just the recruiter you are not going to get the job. This is because a manager makes the decision to hire not the recruiter. We are just the ones to find the right candidate. If you find yourself in front of a recruiter minus a manager then use this “fake interview” as another practice run. Listen to all the questions and really try your best. This scenario usually happens when the manager has a target hire or nepotism is involved, either case you couldn’t control. Just do your best and hope the recruiter thinks of you when another similar role comes up.

  2. You’re Not Asked Any Interview Questions

    I’m all for turning an interview into a conversation but the conversation should still be about the job, your skills and how they match. If the interview turns into an update of “The Bachelor” or “what do you think will happen next on Gossip Girl?” then you are not going to get the job. Small talk to try to get the nerves out of the way is fine but that’s why it should be small talk. As a recruiter we have to ask the same questions over and over again if we can change the subject a little because this interview doesn’t really count (sorry but this does happen) then we will so we can kill 20-30 minutes.

  3. (#3 is a 2-4-1 deal today)
    If They Don’t Ask for References

    You should always have a list of references ready to hand over but wait for the interviewer to ask for them. If they are keen to hire you they will ask immediately after the interview and if they don’t ask at all, you are not going to get the job.

    If You Don’t Hear Back From Them

    Well this is an obvious one and I’d like to apologize on behalf of all the lazy and rude recruiters (you know who you are) who don’t call candidates back to let them know they didn’t get the job. During an interview you should always ask when they expect the interview process to be finished and when you should expect to hear from them. If the interview process will be completed by the end of one week i.e. Friday then you should hear from someone on Monday or Tuesday at the latest. If you don’t that means you didn’t get the job. Some recruiters will say that it might take awhile to offer a role and blame it on bureaucracy. If you were the successful candidate they would call or email you right away. This is because the recruiter wants to get the references started and hopefully get you to accept and provide notice to your current employer. Its really to get the ball rolling while paperwork is being completed. If you are the candidate they want you would be hearing from the recruiter right away.

At The End Of The Day

Target hires, nepotism or the recruiter is just blind and can’t see that you are the best candidate for the role, whatever the reason you didn’t do anything wrong. You did your best and that’s what matters.

Need help with writing a resume or have a question…Ask Dorothy!

photo by: A National Acrobat

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1,329 thoughts on “Why You Didn’t Get The Job Even After A Great Interview

  1. Allen
    April 21, 2011 at 12:59 pm

    Good article. I just experience one of those fake interviews. I have a feeling that they went with someone from within the company. I should have known it was a fake interview after they didn’t ask for a face t0 face interview due to the job being in a different state from the one I currently live in. On top of that, it took them 3 weeks to get back to me. But during all 5 interviews, all interviews went extremely well and the hiring manager even said to me I really like you blah blah blah…. they told me another position will be opening up soon similar to the one I applied so I should apply for that one. anyways we shall see….ohh well, I bought myself some happiness and went to buy some nice clothes. Now it’s time to submit more resumes.

    1. April 21, 2011 at 4:18 pm

      Hi Allen,
      Glad you enjoyed the article. Sorry to hear that you were involved in a “fake interview” but at least you noticed it as a fake. If the company told you about another position that they think you should apply for than you should definitely apply! They probably do not have a target hire this time and you have a better chance of getting it. Good Luck!

      1. Manon P
        April 30, 2016 at 4:57 pm

        Very good article, you made my day, I just had an interview and hit it a hundred percent all the way, one of the best interview I’ve ever had. You’re absolutely right, there was no hiring manager sitting in front of me. They said, they would be forwarding their recommendations to the hiring manager, now it’s dawning on me it was a fake interview, and it wasn’t me at all. I did send a thank you but also asking for feedback before reading this article. Thank you for a very good article, it made me feel much better about myself and how it all went. This happened 3 weeks ago and I got the rejection letter yesterday. I also was stating if they really wanted me I would have heard within the next 2 days. I also believe they hired somebody in with them because I was the only person who had 30 years of experience in the field.

  2. Crystal
    May 3, 2011 at 12:59 pm

    Thanks for the article. I experienced a fake interview two weeks ago with a company that I previously worked for (left company on good terms). The recruiter called me and then an hour later the hiring manager called me and asked if I could come in the next day for the interview and I said yes. The interview was with the hiring manager and she gave me a lot of compliments about my work history listed on my resume. She only asked me basic questions about what was on my resume and what style of training, style of management did I work best under. The final clue that I wasn’t getting the job was when another manager popped in during the interview. I felt like that was a way of cutting the interview short without being rude. They were both very nice and I appreciate that. I asked when I would hear back and she said within 7 days. On the 8th day I called and asked when she would decide and she said not sure since they are still interviewing since they need several associates for the position.

    1. May 4, 2011 at 6:53 pm

      Hi Crystal, thanks for sharing such a great fake interview example.

      1. Margo
        October 31, 2017 at 11:41 pm

        I was contacted for a phone interview by an HR person for Compass Group.That went well and was asked to come in for a job interview. We set a date for Monday then I got a call from the HR person asking if I could come in before that Monday. I explain to the HR person that I would not be able to do that because I had work commitments. She asked me if it would be OK to do a phone interview with her and the hiring manager. I said that would be fine so we set that up they interview went well it went on for two hours. It felt as though they definitely wanted to hire me right away.They called me back and asked me if I could come in for a quick meet and greet on the original date that Monday that I was supposed to have the interview. I told her that would be fine that I would come in that Monday. They asked for my references which I gave them and asked that they only contact them if they were serious about hiring me. they emailed my references that Friday at my current job. So I thought they were serious about me which turned out to be my worst nightmare. On the Monday that I met with the hiring manager it was pretty much a 30 minute meet and greet quick visit. I asked what the turnaround time was in the hiring manager told me two weeks. I never heard anything back I followed up with a thank you note. After week I reached out to the HR person who said that they hadn’t made a decision. I waited another week and reached out to her and she had claimed that they had decided to go with the other person and that they had sent me an email stating that I did not get the job. Which I never received that email or call. A couple weeks went by and as I’m continuing my search they post to the job on indeed. I reached out to the HR person and the hiring manager . I sent them both a very nice email asking how they were doing and hope that they were enjoying the beautiful weather and letting them know that I was still searching for a new opportunity and noticed that they had reposted the job.I told them, I reapplied to the position. And that if the job is still available that,I was reiterating how interested I was in the position. I never heard back from them. I called the HR person got her voicemail and didn’t leave a message she called me back two minutes later didn’t leave a message. I tried her back and she never responded back to me??? I’m just very confused about this whole interview I did all the right things I said all the right things I was honest and upfront. I don’t know what could’ve gone wrong or why they just are not giving me an honest answer back. I really love to get some feedback from you. And maybe put some closure on these unprofessional HR person and hiring managers that should be ashamed!!!! And to put the Cherry on the cake when I asked ( early on) the HR person for the hiring managers email she gave me the wrong email she spelt the company’s name wrong in the email!!! How does this HR person have a job, I don’t understand???

        Looking for some good feedback!

        Thank you, Margo

  3. Belinda
    May 12, 2011 at 6:46 pm

    Thank you for the article it made me feel much better after being rejected for a position I was certain I had in the bag.
    I was actually contacted by the manager to apply for the job and had an interview the next day, I thought it went well, it lasted over an hour and I had a great rapport with the 2 interviewers but I got a phone call that afternoon saying I didn’t get the job.
    The manager rang me with the news and I did have a chance to ask for feedback, the reply really confused me, he said I gave a great interview and not to change anything about my approach, that I was articulate and well presented, I answered the questions thoroughly and I had researched the company well, infact he said he really had no reason not to hire me and that it was unfortunate there were not 2 positions available. Was I just a fill in interview? Your feedback would be appreciated:)

    1. May 17, 2011 at 11:07 am

      Hi Belinda,
      When the manager tells you that you did great and should not change anything isn’t actually great feedback because if you were so great why didn’t you get the job. The reason was probably because they had a target hire or he/she was pressured into hiring someone’s relative. The only thing you can take out of this fake interview is that this manager thought you presented yourself well and that you shouldn’t change anything re: your interview style/approach. Not many people get that sort of feedback and I’m sure this made you feel great and even a little more confident for your next interview. Thanks for sharing your experience.

  4. Gemma
    June 6, 2011 at 9:42 am

    Hi Dorothy,
    I applied for a vacancy for a Receptionist for a company that was opening new offices in the summer. That was back in March. They acknowledged my application by email. I heard nothing until a call came through on my mobile at the beginning of May asking me to attend an interview in London ( I live in Birmingham, England). I turned them down as it was too far. I received a call later that day in the evening saying the HR person would be in Birmingham one day the following week could I attend an interview, which I said yes. I attended the interview which I thought went extremely well and she said it was a pleasure to meet me. It was just me and the HR person. She said she had others to see and would let me know in 2 days. I have not heard anything since. I emailed her a week later to thank her for interviewing me and asked whether a decision had been made. She never replied. Thank you letting us know about these fake interviews. Just think, I could have travelled 100 miles to attend this interview and would have never have got the job. Thanks Gemma

  5. June 6, 2011 at 10:31 am

    Hi Gemma,
    Sounds to me like the company and Recruitment team is really unorganized. I can’t stand rude recruiters who say they will call you in 2 days and than never do. I’m so glad you didn’t waste your time and traveled 100 miles for the interview. Thanks for sharing your story. Dorothy

    1. Grisela
      February 7, 2017 at 1:06 am

      Hi there Dorothy,

      Can I ask you a question? I went on my first interview last Wednesday and it went very well. One of my friends that works there said the manager really liked me. About 5 hours after the hiring manager called me to do a phone interview with me. He asked me about 3 questions and explained the position available/responsibilities and he then said that his assistant was going to be in touch with me perhaps the next day or next couple or few days so I can meet with him the following week. It’s already Monday and haven’t heard from anyone. I’m very concerned as to what is going on? The hiring manager was very nice and I feel confident about my answers. How long should I wait to reach out to him or what do I do? Please help me

  6. Kim
    June 6, 2011 at 11:20 pm

    I was recently flown to the corporate office and had great individual interviews with the executive management team. A week later I was contacted by the HR internal recruiter about their interest in me. I was told they would not be filling the role that I applied for but that they were “working on something for me” which included relocating to their corporate office. It’s been 4 weeks since I last heard from the recruiter and there has been no response to my e-mails and phone calls. I am beginning to wonder if what the recruiter told me was legitimate. Why is she now beginning to ignore my e-mails and phone calls when she started off responding back with quick follow-up? Do you think she told me this because she might have felt bad telling me they were really interested in the beginning but not anymore? I would like to also know if I should reach out to the VP that I interviewed with to find out the status? I’m really bewildered my the cold treatment I am now receiving.

    1. June 7, 2011 at 9:44 am

      Hi Kim,
      Well at least they told you that they wouldn’t be filling the original role. Meaning they didn’t find any candidates that they liked or budget fell threw and they had to close the opening. When I tell candidates that I’m “working on something for them” that usually means you did well in the interview and I would love to have you on the team but essentially I don’t have a position open right now and I hope you keep looking at our job board/postings online. Even if they were “working on something for you” you would probably need to apply for the job and start the interview process all over again. Sounds like the recruiter was just trying to keep you interested in the company. Maybe they thought another role would be surfacing but it didn’t and now they are ignoring you like the plague. So yes, I think the recruiter is feeling bad that she couldn’t find you a role but her job was to keep you interested and she has for 4 weeks. It’s time to move on. I would not recommend you contact the VP. They probably have forgotten about your interview. If you are truly keen on working with that company for a particular reason I would keep emailing your HR contact. Be polite and try not to show your frustration with the lack of communication on her part. If she continues to ignore your emails then unfortunately for this company they lost an opportunity to hire a great candidate. Some folks should not be recruiters if they don’t like giving bad news to someone. I’m sorry that she is being rude to you but not all recruiters are cold. I would focus on how well you did in your individual interviews and bring that same great positive energy to another company. Good Luck and thanks for the comment 🙂

  7. jody
    June 8, 2011 at 1:41 pm

    I would love to hear your feedback on something….I attended an informational interview with a TV station. The sales manager stated if anyone was interested in the position to get back to him and he would email a “project hire” form. He said that was his way of eliminating those who were not serious about the position. Well it was tough but I completed it and turned it in the next AM. I didn’t hear anything so I sent a follow up…nothing…I then called him a few days later and he stated that he didn’t see anything turn up in his email. While on the phone he found it and stated he would look it over and call me back next day or so, he was making an effort to set up interviews for the following week. Well nothing again! I have sent another follow up and still nothing! Its confusing because the project hire was difficult to complete and I feel like its weird after all of my follow up (great for sales) that he hasn’t at least said no thank you? I haven’t even interviewed yet…thoughts??
    They actually own 2 stations and the 2nd station is also hiring for sales and I was wondering if it would be tacky if I contacted them? I really would LOVE to work for them….Its a career I would love to have and this is a great opportunity.

    1. June 8, 2011 at 1:45 pm

      Hi Jody,

      I think the TV station is actually hiring for sales but they are not looking to fill any roles right now. During the informational interview they asked people who were interested to fill out a “project hire” form and this would tell them how many people are in fact interested in the position. I think they were just conducting some research and holding on to resumes rather than actually interested in filling a role. Trust me the Sales Manager is happy that you completed the forms and are following up and he does probably have a role open but in no rush to fill it and that’s why he’s not telling you that you don’t have the qualification or aren’t right for the job. You might be perfect but he’s just not keen in really reviewing your application. If you want to work at the station I would absolutely apply to all the stations that have openings. This will show them that you are serious and keen to work there. It would definitely not be tacky to contact them but be ready to fill out more complicated and time consuming paperwork. If it’s the career/job you want than keep following up and never show your frustration with the process. Always be extra polite and always enthusiastic to join the team. Keep applying and when they finally come around to hire, your application will be front and centre in their minds. Good Luck!

  8. Ryan Lo
    June 8, 2011 at 2:57 pm

    I would love to hear feedback for my situation:

    I went to an interview about 2 weeks ago on May 20th with the VP of the department I would be hired for. The interview went seemingly great. It was at the end of the day on Friday the 20th so I didn’t hear back until Monday the 23rd. The recruiter contacted me saying that it went well and that they will go ahead with the background check and once it’s clear they’ll be prepared to give me an offer. I want about 4 days and I receive another email from the recruiter saying that the VP wants me to meet with my potential team leader and manager for a 2nd interview. It was scheduled for June 3rd. I went and I met with the two and they seemed impressed, everything went well. I even got a couple “great answer” from the team lead herself. During the interview, the manager and her both wrote down the name of the VP of business management and they both looked at each other and said, “I thought the same thing.” Turns out they thought I would be great for what he’s looking for too and I was sent on an impromptu interview with the VP of business management after my 2nd interview with the team lead and manager concluded. I ended up talking to him for about 45 minutes. It went well but I wasn’t interested in his department. The interviews concluded at around 5pm, so naturally I knew I wouldn’t hear back until Monday at earliest or Tuesday. It’s now Wednesday and I haven’t heard anything back. I mean, I got the verbal offer after the first interview, what do you think this silence means? I’m tearing my hair out over here in anxiety! I want to know so bad but I don’t want to pester the recruiter. I’ve done my due diligence and sent all my thank you notes and everything. Please let me know what you think of my situation!

    1. June 8, 2011 at 3:20 pm

      Hi Ryan,
      Well this company definitely made you jump through hoops. What I think happened was bad interviewing. So I think your May 20th meeting with the VP went just ok. I think the VP jumped the gun and gave the recruiter the thumbs up to check references but then the VP changed his/her mind about you. The VP and recruiter than felt bad about telling you that they will check your references so they invited you back in to meet with the team lead and manager and get their opinion. At this point since the VP thought you were just ok the team lead and manager really didn’t want to hire you either so they pushed you again to another VP. The fact that you got a “great answer” doesn’t mean a lot (sorry). People who don’t know how to interview sometimes say that because they are uncomfortable or simply don’t know what to say. Plus since they won’t be hiring you they want you to leave with a positive interview experience and telling someone that they gave a great answer makes them feel good. I think this company should have just ended the interview here but the team lead and manager did not want the responsibility for telling you that they were not interested so they pawned you off to another VP. So to sum it all up, you met with too many “important” people and the recruiter feels bad to tell you that they are not interested so they told you that the role is on hold. Reassessing their need means that they didn’t find a suitable candidate. They want you to still be interested in the company in case they post the role again and they get no other suitable candidates. Technically you’re still in the running but you’re not the best candidate. They will keep looking for a better candidate or they will change the role completely and you will have to apply and interview again. What should have happened was a panel interview so the decision to hire wouldn’t be on one persons shoulders. I would definitely be disappointed too and If you really want to work with these people I would ask the recruiter for a timeline for their decision as you will be interviewing with other companies. They will probably tell you to go ahead and look at other opportunities as I don’t think they are really serious in hiring you. What you did get from this long interview process was interview experience. Hopefully you learned different interview skills and will now be more comfortable in future interviews. I don’t think you did anything wrong. I think the company’s recruitment process stinks. It’s like a break up….It’s not you it’s me…..and I’m being serious when I say I really think it’s not anything you did you just weren’t right for the role. It’s the company and the recruitment process that screwed up. Thanks for the comment and Good Luck.

  9. Ryan L.
    June 9, 2011 at 3:03 pm

    The plot thickens.

    I followed up with the recruiter today and she told me that they were put on hold right now because they want to reassess what their actual needs are.

    This only means a couple things to me: either they’re prolonging my rejection or they’ve already hired another more qualified candidate but they still like me so they’re trying to see if there’s a spot for me in the company. Either way, I’m extremely disappointed at the moment and am still keeping my fingers crossed.

    What do you think Dorothy?

    1. June 9, 2011 at 3:15 pm

      Hi Ryan,
      I think I summed up what I think happened on my response to your original comment. Again, it’s a case of a bad break up….it’s not you it’s me. I think the recruitment/interview process was horrible and you shouldn’t have met with so many people. One panel interview would have saved you days of different interviews. I think they did not find a suitable candidate but they still want you to be interested in the company and essentially not hate them for making you jump through hoops. If they do get back to you I think they will change the role and make you apply again if you’re interested. If you’re really interested in the role I would ask very politely and professionally for a timeline on their decision as you will be interviewing with other companies. I hope this works out but I have a feeling it won’t. Sorry for the bad news but I do hope someone wakes up over there and realizes that you are a great addition to their team and hires you. Thanks again for the comment and I’ll keep my fingers crossed too but think you shouldn’t hold your breath on this one.

  10. Ryan L.
    June 10, 2011 at 11:38 am

    Thanks Dorothy. I wasn’t holding my breath on this one. I knew something might not have clicked when they sent me over to the other VP that I was never scheduled for. What made it worse was after his interview, I asked if I can check back in with the other two before I left and he contacted them and they basically said “no need.” The most horrible thing is they knew I lived 50 miles away from the company and they had me go out there two times. I wish they had just been upfront about their decision, but I know we don’t live in a perfect world. What I’m confused about is my interview though. I think I interview really well and I’m quick on my feet and I’m extremely well spoken and personable. Are there any tips you can give people like me who think they are good at interviews but maybe we’re not all that hot? To be quite honest, I was shooting for the stars, I went in knowing I was slightly under qualified but altered my resume a little to better fit what they where looking for and I spent at least 3 hours studying their policies, history and responsibilities of the role (it dealt with Mortgage). But, better luck next time I guess. I’m still employed, but was just looking for other opportunities. Thanks Dorothy! I’ll keep looking.



    1. June 10, 2011 at 11:40 am

      Hey Ryan,
      I wish they were upfront with their decision too. Keep in mind even if you do perfect (if there is such a thing) and have the right answers for all the questions in an interview you still may not be the successful candidate because of personality. Recruiting is difficult because not only are we trying to find a person who can actually do the job but a person who’s personality will work well with the rest of the team. What I can suggest that always works is just be yourself in an interview. Don’t be too cocky and go the more humble route. Especially if you’re going in knowing your a little under qualified you can’t be to be confident or showy. The best approach is showing enthusiasm. Emphasizing the best skills and experiences on your resume that qualifies you for the role and the rest of your energy should be focused on showing enthusiasm to join their team and how easily you would adapt to the company’s culture and management style. Studying a companies policies, history etc is what you should do for every job interview. It sounds like you were well prepared just make sure that you show more enthusiasm and real interest for the role and the company. Also, so this doesn’t happen to you again (being pawned off to other VP’s etc) ask the interviewer some straight forward questions about the role, what they are really looking for, what the timeline looks like for a start date and ask them how they see you as a fit for the role and their company. Make the interview feel less formal and have just a frank discussion. It’s amazing what you can learn when everyone isn’t focused on a just Q&A session. Keep shooting for the stars Ryan I’m sure you’ll find something fantastic.

  11. jody
    June 10, 2011 at 12:02 pm

    Thanks Dorothy!

    UPDATE: I have finally been asked in for an interview that is scheduled today. Now I am wondering if he is just doing it because I have bugged the guy so much…LOL. Or does it look good that he did ask me to come in? Would he really waste more of his time if he wasn’t filling a position?

    1. June 10, 2011 at 12:48 pm

      Jody that’s great news! They maybe super slow in filling roles but with your persistence you got an interview and that’s amazing!!! I honestly think they do have open roles but at the time of your application and maybe even now they aren’t in any rush to fill. The fact that you did follow up and “bugged them” but in a professional way got you an interview. This is your chance to show them that you are qualified to join the team and are an overall wicked person 🙂 If this is the job/career of your dreams than you need to prepare well. Study the company, history, mission statement, see if you can learn about the interviewer by searching them on LinkedIn and don’t forget to go over basic interview questions. You need to blow them away with your enthusiasm so they are going to want to hire you right away. Congratulations this is really great news!!!

  12. Jody
    June 10, 2011 at 10:21 pm

    Last update I promise..LOL.
    Ok I have to tell you this and get your thoughts. I had my interview today and it went extremely well. He told me I interviewed well and commented that I was very smart. After talking for a while, I asked him the next steps and he said “glad you asked me that”….He wants me to contact and meet with 3-5 sales managers combined in the field of TV, online interactive media and radio. He wants me to request an information interview with them to ask about the industries and what daily life is like. I guess he was asked to do this at the start of his career to make sure the field of media sales was for him and to also prove he could head hunt. He mentioned he is doing this so potential candidates can “hire themselves” since he doesn’t feel he handles the interview process well. His thoughts are he is given the right answers, he thinks they are great, hires them and then they aren’t around 6 months later. He wants this process done and for me to email saying I am ready to go. (he said that twice). Its confusing since I already completed the first step which took me over 4 hours to complete, I get excited about actually starting a job and now its taking even longer. I completely understand where he is coming from, he wants someone to desire and work for the position. Good news is he gave me tips and tricks on how to get this done, even resources and ideas. From what I understand everyone wasn’t given that advantage nor where they invited to participate in the next step. He was honest about that. He also stated I would probably get job offers from me meetings which was funny. I guess I am wondering what this means and if it sounds like something promising? I have never experienced something like this before. I NEED to work ASAP but its also important I am with the right company but feel a little defeated that this process is so crazy long…….I hope this makes some sense. Thanks in advance!!

    1. June 11, 2011 at 4:14 pm

      I love your updates so please keep them coming 🙂 Wow they are really putting you through the ringer but you know what they say…no pain no gain. Just stay positive and I’m sure this long process will be worth it or at least I hope so. I’m not to happy that the interviewer said that “he doesn’t feel he handles the interview process well” and that you “would probably get job offers from the meeting”. This sort of smells like busy work to me. Again, I’m not convinced that they want to hire anyone right now and they are just testing you but lets hope that I’m wrong. Good luck with your sales manager information interviews and I bet at the end of all this not only with this company want you but you will have job offers from the information interviews you set up. Go Jody Go!!!!

  13. Jody
    June 12, 2011 at 12:54 pm

    Thanks Dorothy, It is great to have a pro to ask about all this stuff!
    I do have one more quick questions…do you think its a waste of my time to do all of this, or do you think I have a good chance if I do it? I know it is hard to call, but I am curious what you think about that. Llike most people, I need to start a real job to pay bills. As much as I want this, I cant continue to spend weeks on their process. I can do as much as I can to get this done next week, but I don’t want to waste time for a potential boss who may never hire me. I admit, I get where he is coming from but I am also annoyed. My husband said “Doesn’t he realize people right now cant spend weeks trying to get the same job, tell me yes or tell me no so I can move on”..LOL. I completely get where he is coming from!! But I have to say, the manager did seem honest and stated that he was always hiring….who knows…

    1. June 13, 2011 at 10:15 am

      It’s hard to tell Jody. I don’t want to say that this whole thing is a waste of time because I really hope it’s not. I think if they were hiring right now they wouldn’t make you jump through all of these hoops. Have you actually applied for a specific job opening at this company that has an end date? If this was just a job you applied for that you didn’t really care about than I would say don’t waste your time setting up those informational interviews. You did say that you would really REALLY love to work with these folks and this is the career you would love to have. You already said that you did have the time this week to set these interviews up so why not just do it. You don’t want to pass up this opportunity and have regrets later. The worst thing that can happen is that you get other job offers if these folks flake out. I would see this thing through and see what happens. Stay positive and professional.

  14. Ryan L.
    June 14, 2011 at 5:03 pm

    Unexpected twist:

    I just received the job offer. Dorothy, I’m thoroughly confused. Can you shed some light on what you think happened?



    1. June 14, 2011 at 5:18 pm

      Hey Ryan,
      I think when they told you they had to reassess their needs really meant that they offered the role to another person and they declined. Now that they don’t want to go through the whole interview process again they have offered it to you. This is great news if you’re still interested in the role. Maybe once you start you can make some suggestion to the company regarding their recruitment process. Congratulations and since they might be desperate you can probably negotiate for a better salary. Congratulations again!!!

  15. Ryan L.
    June 14, 2011 at 11:57 pm

    Thanks Dorothy. I guess I’m the last step before the gun. HAHA. I accepted the offer and I’m thoroughly excited. Of course I’m experiencing the new job jitters already and I’m not even there yet. Quitting my current job is going to be like ripping my own arm off, but it’s time. I’ve grown so accustomed to the job I’ve held now. Any advice for new job jitters? This is the first time I’m switching jobs as this job offer I just received is my 2nd job.

    1. June 14, 2011 at 11:59 pm

      Ryan, Recruiters/HR do not want to see anyone fail. Especially a new hire. I”m sure you will receive plenty of training and have access to resources that you will need to succeed in your job. Stay positive and these new job jitters don’t last more than a few days to a week at most 😉 Congratulations again and Good Luck!!!

  16. Belinda
    June 15, 2011 at 12:36 am

    Hi Dorothy,
    Just letting you know that I was contacted by the manager who said I gave a fantastic interview but “sorry” no job, I was offered a position at another location and start tomorrow, I guess it pays to put your best foot forward at all times (even when your feeling down on another rejection) and never discount that no after a failed interview.

    1. June 15, 2011 at 1:14 pm

      Congratulations Belinda! Obviously you did give a fantastic interview and the company was smart enough to keep your resume in their mind when another position came up. This is what every company should do. Good luck in your new role and Congratulations again!!!!

  17. Ryan L.
    June 16, 2011 at 5:38 pm

    This blog is really something else. Thanks Dorothy for all the insightful words. It’s really helpful knowing someone on the other side of the door.

    Thanks again 🙂

  18. Elle C.
    June 18, 2011 at 1:59 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    I came across this blog tonight because I was so upset at my previous experience. (I interviewed for a position that I felt I was perfect for, and we really clicked but the company never called me back).

    Anyway, I was hoping you can shed light on something else- this same organization has interviewed me before for position A, then decided I was not fit for it, so asked me to interview for position B. Position B was the one I REALLY wanted badly but they never called me back (it’s been 2 months now, so I get the hint). However, last week another recruitment specialist from the SAME organization saw my profile on Linkedin and said she would send my resume to the hiring manager and perhaps schedule an interview next week for another position- position C. However, I made the stupid mistake of telling her that I had previously interviewed for a position with the same organization before. I didn’t tell her about position A, but I admitted that I did interview for position B. Do you think that will hinder my chances for this coming job? Does it raise a red flag to recruiters?

    The hiring manager is on vacation, and she wont be back until Monday June 18th. It is up to the manager if she wants to meet with me or not after looking at my resume. The recruiter said that she will get back to me regardless if the hiring manager wants to interview me or not. Do you think I will hear back?

    I’ve been unemployed for almsot 2 months now and I’m so worried I won’t find a job. This one seems really good too because its related to what I did before my MBA. (I am a new graduate).

    Thanks Dorothy!

    1. June 18, 2011 at 4:00 pm

      Hi Elle,
      I think that since this organization has invited you to interview with them a few times means that you obviously have something they like i.e. qualifications or a great personality. I think that it’s great that they invited you back for position B when you weren’t a fit for position A. This means that the recruitment team knows what they are doing. I don’t think it’s stupid that you told her that you already interviewed with them before but next time try not to mention it unless they ask. Once you’re in the system they will see that you have been interviewed before but let them do the homework rather than you give up too much info. It’s not a red flag but maybe a pink one. Sometimes a company or department is small enough that if you’ve already seen one hiring manager and they didn’t like you i.e. personality or qualifications chances are another hiring manager in the same department may not either. The recruiter will ask the managers you interviewed with how it went and why they didn’t hire you. Company culture is really important so if they feel that you won’t be a good fit than you won’t get the job. I really, really, really hope that the recruiter does get back to you regardless but it’s very common and especially with your experience with position B that you won’t hear from them. Not only because you seem like a regular to this organization (with so many interview you might as well be an employee 🙂 ) but candidate deserves to be contacted with an answer. It’s also your job to be persistent and ask for feedback. Don’t let this company play you into getting excited for these possible “fake interviews”. Get concrete answers/feedback about your interviews and find out what they are really looking for in a candidate and what do they see in you that makes them invite you back but not decide to hire you. You mentioned you’re a new grad. Did you change careers or are you new to the working world? If your new to the working world than have a little patience as they may be a little hesitant to hire a new grad. If you’ve changed careers I hope that during your interview you are giving examples from your past experience that relates to your new career choice. Thank you for leaving this comment and please come back and leave an update as I am curious to see what happens. I do hope that you get the job and remember be persistent, polite and professional. Good Luck!

  19. sherrele hill
    June 18, 2011 at 5:00 pm

    Hello, I recently went on a job interveiw two weeks ago. It went very well. My friend works for the company and she recommend me for the postion. I showed up twenty minutes early for the interview with the hiring manager. We have a very good conversation the interveiw was suppose to be with two managers and during the interview the other managers called and ask does he need to come in and ask questions the hiring manager assure him no the interview is going extremly well. During the interview he tells me the location of the job the salary and I would have my own office and the staff members names and the company would give me a personal blackberry, and HR would call me with a offer that I can neogaite for more money if I choose to, After the interview was over I ask my three questions and he assure me that day was the last day of interviews and I would definitely hear from him in two weeks if I don’t he gave me his card with his num and email and told me to give him a call. I sent and thank you email within 24 hours and waited two weeks exact and left a voicemail stating I am still interesting in the postion. I am still wondering if I am going to be offered the postion?

    1. June 20, 2011 at 10:39 am

      Hi Sherrele,
      Thanks for your comment. My first question is where was the recruiter? The hiring manager that you interviewed with sounds very unprofessional. The fact that he felt that he could go ahead and tell you about the salary, office perks and tried to tell you that you could negotiate more money makes me think that he is not a good manager. He probably thinks he can interview people but he cannot (lacks basic interview skills) and needs to have a recruiter there with him. If HR let him interview alone than they probably don’t take him seriously. The fact that he promised you that someone in HR will call you back and they haven’t and he hasn’t either tells me that the interview may have not been taken seriously by HR. He may not even have the authority to hire. It was too bad that he stopped the other manager from coming to your interview. I’m 100% positive that your interview would have been very different if there was a second hiring manager present. If I was you I would email HR and copy this manager asking for a response ASAP. Don’t be rude or sound frustrated but be very polite and professional. If you don’t hear from anyone than call HR and tell them that this manager has offered you this job (he did tell you that HR would call you with an offer) and you are essentially waiting for an offer. Again, I can’t stress enough that you need to stay professional and respectful but at the same time insure that you are treated with respect. They need to know that you hope that the interview you had was not a waste of your time. My fingers are crossed for you and I hope you hear from them very soon. Thanks again for the comment.

  20. Elle C.
    June 20, 2011 at 5:20 pm

    Hi Dorothy!

    Thank you so much for your response!
    So far, she has not contacted me (last time we spoke she said she’ll get back to me by the middle of the week because the hiring manager was on vacation). I really hope this job search pulls through because I’m getting frustrated and tired.

    I am a new MBA graduate. I did 3 years work experience prior to school. I just finished in April. So it’s been 2 months and I’m still unemployed sadly. I am hoping that employers do not care about the number of experience because I really don’t have that much.

    I will let you know what happens this week! 🙂 Thanks so much for your lovely blog 🙂

    1. June 20, 2011 at 5:25 pm

      Hey Elle,
      If you don’t have a lot of work experience make sure you highlight other related experience such as volunteering, being a member of certain organizations, committees or associations. Lack of experience is the number one problem with new grad resumes but you can still have a professional and impressive resume when you get a little creative with your background, school experience and team affiliations. Remember juggling life, possible part-time or full-time work and going back to school to get your MBA is a huge challenge and I’m sure has changed/improved you and taught you skills that are invaluable.

  21. sherrele hill
    June 22, 2011 at 9:43 am

    Hi Dorothy!
    Thank you, so much for your response, I have taken your advice and I have email the recuiter and let him know I am still interested in the postion and patiently waiting for a prompt response.

  22. sherrele hill
    June 22, 2011 at 9:57 am

    Hi Dorothy!

    Thank you, so much for your response. I have email the recruiter again and let him know I am still interested in the postion, and I would like a response back, so I guess I will wait for an answer. I will continue to look and apply elsewhere. Again thank you, for your advice.

  23. June 22, 2011 at 2:04 pm

    I have just received and response via email. And this is what was said. I guess there is still hope!

    Hi Sherelle,

    Yes, a decision can generally take about 2 weeks.
    I have not concluded the interviews yet.
    You will be contacted by HR once a decision is made (it shouldn’t be more than another weeks).
    Please be patient with the process.
    Good Luck!

    1. June 22, 2011 at 2:18 pm

      Hi Sherrele,
      Absolutely there’s hope! That’s a great response and if this was me I would thank the sender for the update and make light/reference to my persistence and the fact that I am very interested and qualified for the job. Try to leave a lasting but professional impression. This is great news and my fingers are crossed for you 🙂

  24. Sandra
    June 24, 2011 at 7:56 am

    Hi Dorothy,
    Two weeks ago I had a phone interview with a recruiter and everything went fine. At the end he told me that he would email within two days the date and time to interview with the director and that most likely would happen the following week as she was on vacation. I never received the email .I did a follow up with a phone call and nothing , then I saw that the position was not longer listed. However, just yesterday it was listed again,should I call him again ?? He never returned my follow up calls.
    I really want to work for that company .

    1. June 24, 2011 at 9:30 am

      Hi Sandra,
      Sounds to me that the recruitment process started a bit to early. It’s hard enough to schedule an interview with a Director let alone right before they are going on vacation. I think what happened is that the Director or someone in HR closed the role because they either didn’t find any good candidates, the role needed to be changed or wasn’t needed anymore. Now that the Director returned from vacation they realized yes, we in fact need this position so they have posted it again. I think the recruiter never returned your call because so much time has passed and he’s a bit embarrassed or you aren’t exactly what they are looking for and they are hoping to see if they get better candidates in this batch. If you really really want to work for this company and you think you are qualified for this job than apply again and email the recruiter. Tell him that you are very interested in this role and explain how you think your experience and skills would be an asset. This is where you need to be persistent but extremely polite and professional. Just mention to the recruiter that you noticed the job posting again and that you are very interested and looking forward to the opportunity to meet with the Director. Let me know how it works out and Good Luck!

  25. Elle C.
    June 24, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    Update: It’s Friday and she hasn’t responded to my email or voicemail. She said she’d get back to me mid week (ie Wednesday) and never did. She also said she’d get back go me regardless and never did. The hiring manager just came back from vacation on Monday. So I’m guessing the hiring manager didnt like my resume and doesn’t want to meet with me?

    Im pretty upset right now.

    1. June 24, 2011 at 2:28 pm

      I want to stay positive for you Elle and say that you should wait until Monday to hear from the recruiter. The first week back from vacation can be very busy for anyone and recruitment may not be a priority for the Manager. On the other hand the manager might have spoken with their colleagues who you interviewed before and decided to pass on meeting you. I can see why you would be disappointed but I would email or call the recruiter Monday to get closure and than move on. Other opportunities will come and you are now better prepared for future interviews. Sorry Elle 🙁

  26. Sandra
    June 27, 2011 at 8:06 am

    Thank you Dorothy, I got an e-mail on Friday stating that if the recruiter sees I’m a fit for the position he would contact me otherwise that’s the last I would hear from them. I check again the website and the position is not longer listed. It’s been tought getting an interviewet alone a job. I’m currently employ however I’m trying to change careers. I don’t Feel that I’ll growth there and my commute is 2 hours each way .
    Thanks for everything 🙂 and telling it like it is.

    1. June 27, 2011 at 10:10 am

      Hi Sandra,

      At least you’re currently employed while you’re transitioning to a new career. Finding a job can be hard but stay positive. Have you updated your resume? I can review it for you if you’d like. You need a really well written resume especially when you’re changing careers. Good Luck and remember to stay positive and I’m sure you’ll find something soon.

  27. Tim R
    July 6, 2011 at 5:53 pm

    I found your blog sometime ago and I find it very useful. I’m hoping for your perspective on a recent interview process.
    So a friend of mine that I used to work with asked me to go to work with her on a team at a new job. I submitted my package to a recruiter, she submitted it to the team and I was brought in for an interview less than 4 days after hearing about the job.
    My friend and her teammate interviewed me. I felt the interview went well. My friend said at the end of the interview that I should expect to hear back within two days, that the boss likes to make decisions fast and that she thought I’d be a good fit, but the interview was largely about impressing the teammate, which she said she believed I did.
    The recruiter called me today (as it’s a contract job and the recruiting firm handles the contract and pay for the position). The recruiter asked me to hold tight and that from the feedback she received they were very interested and impressed by me, but that they had one more person to interview on Friday. I’m concerned because I didn’t get the impression they were interviewing anyone else and my colleague/friend said she expected I’d hear back sooner. I’m worried that I didn’t impress them enough and they brought in someone else to interview. Additionally the original recruiter is going on vacation and she is passing me off onto another recruiter to finish out the process. Do you think I have a reason to be concerned about that, the recruiter’s response or the bringing in of someone else to interview several days later? Did I miss my chance or could other factors be at play?

    1. July 7, 2011 at 5:08 pm

      Hi Tim,
      I think your friend and her team had a hard time finding a person to join their group. So they were asked to ask friends and colleagues if they knew anyone. Your friend asked you as I’m sure her other colleagues asked their friends. You were invited for the interview and did well. Great! but now the recruiter is interviewing the other candidates that the other team members suggested. Don’t be fooled if they gave you an impression that you were the only one they were interviewing because that would be a huge lie. The only time a company would only interview and hire one person is if they were VERY desperate. In this case, they are not desperate and the recruiter is just looking at another candidate that was submitted. I’m sure you blew them away and your friend is telling everyone that you are the BEST and need to be hired right away 😉
      I don’t think you should worry about the original recruiter passing you off to another recruiter because she is going on vacation. That is normal but if I was the recruiter I would want to finish the process. Did you contact the new recruiter? I would introduce yourself and ask where he/she was in the recruitment process. I honestly think since your friend was on the interview panel she would be the best person to ask re: who they are going to hire as they would be the first to know. The difficult part in this scenario is that the other person they interviewed is probably a friend of a person on the team, which means two people on the team are voting for their friends to get hired. This makes things difficult unless one person out shined the other in the interview. I really believe you should talk to your friend. Thanks for leaving the comment and good luck!

  28. Ken
    July 8, 2011 at 8:03 am

    President of company (big company, private, $1B in sales) called me after seeing my resume. Interviewed me 3 weeks ago (6-16). Interview went well, he said he would “put something together.” Said he would call the following Tuesday, no call. I left him a message on Tuesday (6-21) and a message on Thursday (6-23). Earlier the next week (6-28), I dropped off some info pertinent to the job at his office. Today has been three weeks since the interview. I know his HR guy was on vaca last week (holiday week). Probably the guy I interviewed with was on vaca as well – July 4th. Lastly, this is a new position for the company, no other candidates that I know of.

    Should I just wait at this point ? What else can I do ? I think the holiday has something to do with it. Why would he say he would “put something together” if he had no intention of doing so ? At end of interview, he gave me his business card – I did not ask for it. Also, his son stepped into the office while we were interviewing and he introduced me to him. Help !

    1. July 8, 2011 at 2:50 pm

      Hi Ken,
      Were you also interviewed by a recruiter from that company? If not, this does not look good I’m afraid. I have been interviewed by President’s/Senior level folks in companies but it is always followed up quickly with another meeting with some partners and HR. I think the President of this company liked your resume but not the interview. People, just to be nice, will often leave interviewees with the impression that they did well such as saying “I’ll put something together” so you leave feeling great. Giving out the business card is nice but doesn’t mean anything and being introduced to his son only means that he is not a rude individual. I personally think especially since it’s been 3 weeks and that you have tried numerous times to get a hold of your contact that this is not meant to be. Maybe for a moment he/she thought you were good for the role but since that meeting they have changed their minds and sadly said they would call and hadn’t. If you want closure try emailing your contact one last time asking for an update of the recruitment process because you are considering other offers at this time. They should respond to you and if they don’t, you unfortunately know your answer. Sorry.

  29. G Iain
    July 16, 2011 at 5:37 am

    Thanks for the fantastic post. I was feeling very down after I attended interviews in 4 different places, did 3 rounds each in each place and got rejected in all of them in the final round. I was beginning to think I am good for nothing. It’s hard to believe that there was nepotism in all 4 of them, maybe I was not convincing in the final round. But this still replaces the confidence in me for a little while longer to carry on with interviews in a fifth place.

    1. July 16, 2011 at 9:21 am

      Hi G,
      Thank you for the comment. Job hunting is difficult. I’m glad to hear that you are making it to the final rounds of the interview process. Remember to always stay engaged throughout the process. Always try to bring something new to the table. When it comes down to the final round, a persons personality has a huge impact on the decision. Try to befriend the recruiter and hiring manager. Stay professional but make sure some of your personality comes out and they see you as a cool guy to hang out with in the office. Thanks again for the comment and good luck!

  30. Zach
    July 17, 2011 at 4:50 am

    You wrote a fantastic article, Dorothy 🙂
    However, I was hoping if you could give me some advice…
    At the end of January, I applied online for a position at the pool of a prestigious resort. Two weeks later, at the beginning of February, I was called in for an interview. I went in for the interview, and as I was waiting for the candidate before me to finish up his interview, I heard someone in the office next to the interviewer’s calling several more people for interviews, so they must have had many open positions. I did great in the interview; however, my availability may have been what killed me in consideration. I had been going to school and was only available weekends. So a month passed by, and I called in to follow up on the interview. The lady who answered (not the interviewer) said all positions were filled and they would let me know of any other open positions. I thanked her, but the next day, they had sent me one of those generic rejection emails. I moved on with my life… but a few weeks ago, I saw the same position re-posted on the website. I thought to myself, well what the heck, and re-applied for the job. My availability is wide open now and I’m itching with anticipation to see if they call me or not. It’s been three weeks and the job is still posted. Should I call them and explain myself to them, to try and convince them to re-interview me? I don’t have much to lose… please help!

    1. July 17, 2011 at 9:00 am

      Hi Zach,
      I am 100% sure (even though I was not on the interview panel 😉 that you did not get the first job because of you availability. I’m sure since you waited one month to follow up…NEVER WAIT THAT LONG!!!!…they had forgotten about you and therefore once you called and reminded them that you were a candidate they sent you the rejection letter. I’m glad you re-applied but you should have made it VERY CLEAR on your cover letter that your availability is WIDE OPEN! Since it’s been three weeks and the posting is still up I would apply again with a new cover letter stating your availability and then call the recruiter. Tell them that you had interviewed before and at that time you could have been offered the job but you could only work weekends. Now your situation is much different and your availability is wide open. You need to stress that you really want to work for this resort. Do you remember the names of the people who you interviewed with i.e. the recruiter, or managers? See if you can get there numbers or emails and contact them directly. If you had a great interview (you did say you did great) than they will remember you and want to hire you right away 🙂 Good Luck and STOP WAITING (I don’t mean to yell but this is important) weeks to follow up on your interviews. You should send a thank you email the next day and follow up a few days after that depending on how long the interview process was going to take as per the recruiter.

  31. Timothy
    July 17, 2011 at 11:27 am

    Hows’s it goin dorothy, ive just been reading up on a few of your fans concerns and you gave really good answers and helpworthy info for people to help get on the right track for getting there next job. I used to be so cocky and confident because after every interview i would land the job so easy. im currently lookin for another job and im having a complete opposite experience then what I used to have, I ran through 3 different interviews with no results of being hired . After the first 2 interviews ive really humbled myself but i didnt feel like i would go into a interview thinkn i would “ace it”. Just doin really well on interviews normally landed the job. Being let go from your recent job does that have some sort of effect on landing my next job? Also im not a criminal there shouldnt be anything on my backround check im clean as i can be nothing to hide. This is a learning experience for me that it isnt as easy as it looks. Im getting alil tired just hanging out and having fun and at the same time looking for another job. Also the three interviews i had were career changing jobs , just trying to get my foot in the door but at the same time im interested in the job as well. I would love to hear your feedback so i can get on the right path to landing another job. What am I doin wrong .

    1. July 17, 2011 at 9:50 pm

      Hi Timothy,
      Things are going well. Thanks for asking 🙂 The first thing I want to say is that you’re probably finding interviews a little more difficult because you are changing careers. You obviously have a good enough resume for you to get interviews, so that’s good. Maybe you’re too relaxed in these interviews. Maybe you’re not taking these jobs seriously enough, as you stated you’re just trying to get your foot in the door. Changing careers most of the time means starting at the bottom. Maybe you’re applying to junior level roles that are really too junior for you. It’s really hard to say anymore without more information. What about your knowledge of the company? Are you doing your homework? Are you proving to them that you would be an asset and showing them with examples what you would bring to the team? In regards to being let go from your last job and that having an effect on landing your next job, it all depends on why you were let go. Were you fired? did they at you go due to restructuring? and please don’t say “it was mutual” because there is no such thing. So it really depends. Sorry I couldn’t be more help. I think if I had more information I could give you some more insight. Thanks for leaving a comment and stay positive! Good Luck!

  32. Maria
    July 18, 2011 at 4:48 pm

    I was recently given a verbal offer after my interview and told that I just had to get a screening call from a recruiter as part of HR protocol. The recruiter was suppose to call me the next week but no call. The Hiring Manager reassured me and had me speak to his National Manager, which went well. The Hiring Manager said that the paperwork had been submitted for approvals. The recruiter was suppose to call me last Tuesday or Wednesday and that they were shooting for a start date of Aug 1 or 8. I never heard from the recruiter. I followed up with the Hiring Manager on Thursday by leaving a VM on his cell phone. He never responded. I emailed him again today but no response. What do you think is happening? It was my understanding that everyone loved me, i.e. the Hiring Manager, the market VP and the National Manager. Could the Hiring Manager be playing games?

    1. July 18, 2011 at 5:00 pm

      Hi Maria,
      Well, as usual I don’t like that a recruiter was not involved in your interview. There is a lot of back end paperwork that needs to be handled before a candidate can be hired. This includes a lot of approvals including finance. What might be happening is that the hiring manager is jumping the gun. Usually they cannot offer a candidate a role and that was his/her mistake. Since the hiring manager started the ball rolling a little ahead of time, the recruiter and HR might be just trying to catch up. If this is the case than you should hear from them soon. I don’t actually like that no one has responded to you thou and this may mean that everything is a bust. I don’t think the hiring manager was playing games with you but probably moved too quickly. Since no one has gotten back to you I would email the recruiter and copy the hiring manager, if you have there contact info. I would state that you were verbally offered the job and you are waiting for the job offer to come through. As usual I cannot stress this enough but you MUST stay professional and polite at all times. I am sure once you send this email you will hear from someone very shortly. Make sure you mention your start date of August 1st or the 8th 🙂 Good Luck and keep me posted.

  33. Timothy
    July 18, 2011 at 7:46 pm

    Hey dorothy thanks for responding . I was let go because me and the lead assistant wasnt getting along . Of course theres always 2 sides to a story, I was feeling alot of neglect from him when in worked there. I was an account rep. at Rent a Center where I was in charge of collections , did deliveries repo’s and made sure people were paying there bills on time so we can finish and meet the stores qualifications at the end of the week . Basically you had to have a backbone at that job or you wouldnt even last . They also have a very high drop out rate and I lasted 8-9 mths there. Any ways me and this guy openly admitted that we are very anti social and these type of people dont get along to good but also be best of friends , because my best friend is anti social and me and him would disagree and argue and once fought over alot of irrelavant stuff. But that wasnt the case for this situation , the guy automatically judges people past and present that start working there, It was a very stressful. When I first got there he yelled at me over the phone about some stuff that had nothing to do with so when I got back i asked if we can talk in the office and he literally told me we have nothing to talk about and started yelling and goin on. That moment was when i realized we werent gonna get along and that he wasnt as proffessional at all. So we would bump heads alot ,the hours were long so everybody bumped heads. I would always text him when the shift was over and talk with him thru a text and we would come to an agreement.The problem was that he was the type of person who would get personal with you because of the position he held was higher so it was somewat of an dominance and having advantage over me and used that to his advantage. I messed up because i let it drag on so long and never went higher than my bosses boss. My boss was cuban and he was hispanic and they weren’t as proffessional as they looked, another story. But 1 day I got fed up because I was fed up with his overpowerment and I never had a problem with listening or taking orders or nothing. He called me a lier about something that had nothing to do with me . I told him I was tired of him taking advantage of me calling me a lier and carrying on so I will be talking to the higher ups about my concerns. He never denied anything told me i sounded like a broke record and so on and all of this was said in a texts messages ,We always talked thru text messages after wrk so I told him we can talk about it when you clocked out. Nothing new, he used it to his advantage to the higher ups made the higher ups perceived it{threat} in a negative way and there was my job. The job was very unprofessional they treated employees like crap, We had 2 convicted sex offenders working with us, I was stressed out im just glad it didnt work out there. now im collecting unemployment looking for new work. I also need to work on my interviewing skills. you hit it right on the head with that part. Im just hoping that isnt whats keeping me from getting my next job. Because i have tons of experience, have my resume ready [going to update soon} and I jus wanna get back to work. I need pointers dorothy. In the meantime im still looking and I know that jobs do alot of hiring late july and august because of college students going back to school. Im 21 so age isnt a factor. I also realized that i have to work on my inteviewing skills. I dnt do researches and im not as strong as Im suppose to be when interviewed. I just started looking at pointers online about becoming better.

    1. July 18, 2011 at 8:30 pm

      Hey Timothy,
      Sorry to hear about your co-worker and your experience at your last job but don’t let that define you. Move on! You’re only 21 and you will unfortunately meet and work with other people who maybe annoying, rude, manipulative etc. Use this as a learning experience and be honest when you’re asked why you left your last job but be professional. Just say that you did not get a long with another co-worker and you let things go on for too long. You wished it didn’t end the way it did but you’ve learned from that experience and want to move on. It’s great that you want to get back to work so focus on that. Do some research on the companies that you get interviews with (always stay positive). Have you signed up for my newsletter? I give out some great common job interviews questions and even provide you with some great questions to ask your future employer/recruiter. In regards to background checks, companies are definitely careful not to give out too much information in case it is taken or used as slander but all ROE or record of employments that are given out when you leave a company (get fired or quit) will have the reason why you left i.e. termination with or without cause.

  34. Timothy
    July 18, 2011 at 7:58 pm

    ps: It was also stated that jobs are only allowed to display if you’ve worked there and your release date, even the other day my friend jus got hired at his job and they said they are only allowed to know your start and release date and cant disclose any of information that is goin to slander you. I can understand if you murdered someone on the job but that pops up on a back round check lol

  35. T
    July 18, 2011 at 8:57 pm

    I went on a interview today a fwe hours later I recieved a call for a second interview. They want to do a background and consumer check what will they actually check for

    1. July 18, 2011 at 9:15 pm

      Hi T,
      A background check or sometimes called a consumer report in the HR world, is a report that allows employers to check you background i.e. credit, criminal and past employment. It is usually done by a third party and they want to see if you are a responsible individual but keep in mind a decision not to hire you cannot be solely based on whether you’re paying your student loans on time or have filed for bankruptcy 😉 Good Luck on the 2nd interview and get your references ready.

  36. Maria
    July 19, 2011 at 9:09 am

    Thanks for your insight. Unfortunately, I do not have the contact information for the recruiter. Do you think I should contact the market VP who had me come in for the interview with his lead manager and gave the OK to hire me? I don’t want to go over the hiring manager’s head, but I want to move on if this job offer is not going to come through. I have put everything on hold as I wait for HR. I should also mention that the Hiring Manger even had me come in for a day of training with his teams from different regions. However, after talking to the recruiter at lunch, he sent me home becaue she cautioned him that I was not an employee and should not be in training. This is so confusing. Who is calling the shots?

    1. July 19, 2011 at 10:17 am

      Hey Maria,
      I would try to find the contact information for the recruiter. Try the website of the company. Ideally I would email the recruiter and everyone you interviewed and state that you are waiting for the job offer that was verbally made to you and further more that you should be compensated for the day training that you were asked to come in and do. This is not really confusing. Again, a manager is trying to do a recruiters job and something is holding back the recruiter to hire you. I bet that the recruiter can’t hire you because the approval didn’t go through. Don’t just email the market VP etc. because he/she doesn’t know what they are doing. You can always find an HR contact on the company’s website even if it’s just a general email. You need HR to see this email and respond. Also, never agree to come in for training unless you get paid. I think its horrible that hiring managers are not trained properly and can easily waste a candidates time. I hope your time is not wasted and HR forwards you an offer after they receive your email but if you don’t get an offer don’t sweat it. Sounds like this company, HR and the Management staff need to be retrained. Good Luck!!!

  37. Maria
    July 19, 2011 at 11:53 am

    What would be some reasons that could cause an approval not to go through? Also, how important is your credit score? Could they have run a report without my knowledge?

    1. July 19, 2011 at 12:31 pm

      Before a person can be hired a lot of things need to be approved. Maybe finance fell through, maybe the staff plan did not allow another role to be created. I can go on and on but all of these things are handled my HR/recruiters. Regarding your credit score, most companies do run a background check or consumer report but they either need your written approval to run the full report or at least your consent to view parts of it. If you are worried about what is on your credit report you should view it yourself by visiting annualcreditreport.com.

  38. July 22, 2011 at 2:34 pm

    I went through first interview, had interview with store manager. Everthing went well. I got the job and was set up for training. Five days later I was told that the job was given to someone inside the company and there were no other jobs in the store. The store is a major retailer going through a massive re-model. What gives??? Any insights????

    1. July 22, 2011 at 2:40 pm

      Hi Linda,
      This situation is rare but it does happen. Technically an employer can let you go for any reason during the probation period. Maybe they decided after your training that you weren’t the right person for the job so they decided to give it to someone else. Did you come to work late? How was your attitude during training? Did you get a long with everyone? The probation period can be an extension of the job interview. You need to be in your best behaviour. Like I said, an employer can let you go for any reason during the probation period and obviously they felt you weren’t a good fit. I”m sorry.

  39. Ellen
    July 24, 2011 at 11:22 am

    I have applied to over 30 interviews this month and the results were: 25% informed me that they were in fact not hiring (then why have an interview?) 10% gave me the old we’ll be in touch, 15% never replied but continue to post job listings and 50% only sent me applications to wire transfer scams and mystery shopper jobs. I am tired of having my time wasted and I am tired of spending carfare to visit places that are always located in remote, secluded areas of another borough that requires me to take two trains both ways. I am standing on the threshhold of homelessness, I can’t pay my tuition which is making my credit score drop considerably.

    1. July 24, 2011 at 11:45 am

      Hi Ellen,
      Send me your resume to review. I want to see what it looks like and maybe it will be clear to me why you’re not getting the results you want. You also can’t give up. I don’t know anything about you i.e. what jobs you are looking for, what you’re interested in etc. so it’s hard for me to comment. All I know is that job hunting and interviews can suck. Saying that you NEED to stay positive. Please send me your resume so I can try to help.

  40. ND
    July 24, 2011 at 8:11 pm

    Hi, I was just interviewed for an internal job for which I was one of the best qualified candidates. However, I was unable to make the original interview time, due to having to accompany my husband to hospital for pre-admission tests prior to cancer surgery. The convener emailed me to say sorry about my personal circumstances, but the recruitment schedule must be adhered to. It was only manager intervention that secured me an interview the next day. The job involves the amalgamation of two customer service teams, one of which I already lead, and I have initiated several work-related eventsbetween the two teams in the past. The job went instead to an exec assistant who has no experience of either team, and does not deal with customers in any way. When I tried to lodge a protest, the HR manager advised me that he was too busy to look into it for two weeks, plus there was already a contract in place (I lodged my protest the day after being informed of the outcome) and it could not be overturned, regardless of the outcome of the investigation into my claims. Plus, he was the one who signed off on the recruitment, so is unlikely to report any inconsistencies that may or may not show up in the recruitment process. I know the successful applicant quite well, and am aware from my own conversations with her that she does not fulfil at least two of the ‘essential criteria’, yet have been informed that essential criteria are not in fact actually essential. This is a government position, where rules and regs are meant to be especially stringent, yet the goalposts keep shifting. Fake interview, much?

    1. July 24, 2011 at 8:45 pm

      Hi ND,
      Unfortunately, government jobs even with there rules and regs can sometimes be the worst perpetrators with regards to fake interviews, nepotism etc. I agree with you that HR will unlikely report any inconsistencies. I just hate to hear stories like this. It seems so unfair but I always remind myself that things happen for a reason. Maybe you will be offered a great opportunity in a few months that you would have never considered if you had gotten this role. Stay positive and especially professional if you want to stay and be happy in your government job. Do not let this experience define you and hold you down from applying to other jobs. This decision had NOTHING to do with you and your skill level. The only thing that I would suggest especially in government is to network. Meet and befriends with as many people, hiring managers etc. Obviously job criteria’s and job descriptions are not important. It’s who you know. Thanks for sharing and again I’m so sorry that this happened.

  41. Jamie
    July 25, 2011 at 9:28 am

    Hello Dorothy – first of all, you’re amazing! Thank you for taking time to reply & post all of this helpful information. Your responses to everyone are like bonuses because they have so much insight as well! I came across your site as I googled “interview went really well, but I didn’t get the job.” I interviewed at a credit card company last Monday, one of Fortune’s “BEST COMPANIES TO WORK FOR”. I submitted my application to their website, a recruiter called me the very next day, she asked if Id be available for a telephone screening, we set that up. It went very well, we shared a few laughs then a couple days later they contacted me for a interview. I went in, met with the hiring manager, then after her, 2 of the team leaders, I thought the interview went perfect. We covered my entire resume, they put me in scenarios & said I was great, we even spoke about personal stories. It lasted an hour. I went home, nervous but confident. 72 hrs later, I received an email stating they are sorry but I have not been selected. I was devastated. I even cried. (Don’t tell anyone). I’m 26, and I worked at my previous job for 6 yrs. Before that, I had only had 2 jobs, 2 years at each job, and one was my fathers company, the other I got hired on the spot, no interview. This was actually, to be honest, my first REAL interview. I believe that’s why I’m taking it so hard. I keep replaying it wondering what I did wrong? Could it be because I told them I don’t do well with change? I explained I meant that I’m loyal, I don’t like to move around & switch jobs a lot. I fear they took it as me not accepting change within the work environment. But could 1 flub really mess the whole thing up? I’m trying not to become discouraged but I’m taking it so hard. I should get over it & move on, I know. :0/

    1. July 26, 2011 at 11:37 am

      Hi Jamie,
      Thank you so much for your lovely comment. I’m glad that you’re enjoying my website and that reading other peoples comments/stories are helpful as well. In regards to your situation, it sounds to me that you’re just not used to the interview game. Yes it is a game and it can be very hard to play as the rules seem to change all the time. Since you don’ t have a lot of interview experience I think you don’t know what to look for when your critiquing your interview. You need to remember to stay professional during an interview. I’m not asking you to lie about your skills or what you’re comfortable doing but no one is perfect. I really think that telling the recruiter/hiring manager that you’re not comfortable with change was a BIG mistake and possibly the main reason you didn’t get the job. The fact that you have been with a company for 6 years already shows that you’re loyal. When it comes to answering interview questions you need to be black and white with your answers. Try to not leave any room for their own interpretation of what you said or what you meant. If I was sitting in on your interview I would probably think this person is sweet and the interview seems very light do to the laughs you shared. Then you hit them with your “I hate change” statement (I know it’s not exactly what you said but that is how it comes across). Overall, this interview seemed to light for me and you came across as a little unprofessional. You need to remember to be friendly and personable but also that an interview is two sided. It’s not just you hoping that they like you but they want to know if you want to work for them. When you’re too busy trying to make sure that they like you, you look desperate. So I think the combination of your desperation and your “change” statement were the reasons you didn’t get the job. You need to practice your responses. Also, it does’t matter how you got your jobs i.e. father’s company etc. or how long you worked there. The point is that you got the job and you gained some amazing experiences and learned some invaluable skills. You are a talented person who works very hard. You just need to work on your interview approach. Have you signed up for my newsletter? I provide some great common interview questions that you should practice with and also provide fantastic questions that candidates should ask the recruiters. I think you should get over it and move on but before you do that learn from your mistakes so your future interviews will be more successful. The more practice you get the better you will be. Good luck!

  42. Silent
    July 26, 2011 at 7:33 pm

    Hi, Dorothy! This blog is just so helpful I HAVE to ask you advice. Ok so, June 30th I was called by an HR Recruiter from an big media company to come in and interview for a position. She was very nice and upbeat. No phone interview surprisingly. She just wanted me to come in. She emailed me the job application, requested references, electronically sign off to give them permission to check my background etc.

    July 8th I went in for the interview and interviewed with the dept. manager. Interview went really well. Very relaxed. At one point he told me, “I don’t know why you’re nervous because you know your stuff.” After the interview he said he wanted to show me around the company. He took me up and down and all around the company. Introduced me to everyone. I shared a couple of laughs with them. Afterwards he escorted me to the door and I asked when I should hear back from them. He said probably up to 2 weeks. Ok, fine.

    That following Tuesday the company emailed my references for info on me. Very detailed reference questionnaire by the way. And I haven’t heard anything from them since. Its on week 3 now. I contact the HR rep twice. Once by email to thank her. The second time was because I needed the dept. manager email address to thank him and it wasn’t in the previous emails she sent me. ( I ended up going old school and mailing him a card). She never responded to me.

    My question is should I called the dept. manager instead to check the status or keep waiting. I went online to my account with them and the position just says “You are currently being considered for this position.” What should I do? Why the lonnnnggg wait? Thanks and so sorry for the long letter! Thanks!

    1. July 26, 2011 at 7:45 pm

      Hi Silent,
      Was the recruiter in your interview? I’m not clear if she just set up the meeting with the dept. manager. It sounds to me like she wasn’t and I hate when HR is not involved. Hiring Managers do not know how to recruit and overall just want you to have a good interview experience. I don’t like that you describe the interview as “very relaxed”. People tend not to be professional when they are “very relaxed”. I’m not sure that the hiring manager took this interview seriously. I bet he didn’t even write down any notes from your discussion. Taking you around and introducing you to people is not professional. I knew a manager who did that only because he wanted to waste a little more time and he was sort of flirting with the candidate (hope your situation is not the same). In any case, 2 weeks to wait to hear back is a long time. That kind of tells me that they are not in a rush to hire at all. Huge red flag that the HR rep didn’t respond at all to you as well. I would definitely suggest that you call the dept. manager right away to find out an update. My feeling is that you were not exactly what they were looking for because if you were you would have gotten an offer by now. All recruiters assume candidates are interviewing with other companies and this is why the process is fairly quick. We don’t want to lose our best candidate. Again, I would call right away and then email the HR rep and ask for an update as well. Always be professional and polite but don’t be surprised if you don’t get a response from either one of them. In regards to checking your account online, recruiters will never change the status of a candidate who they might still consider until the job is filled. I have offered a job to one person and they end up accepting but then something falls through and I lose them. Now I can go to my plan B candidate and offer it to them but if I changed the status to “not longer considering for position” (or whatever) than plan B candidate would have accepted another job with another company and I would have no candidates left and would have to start the recruitment process all over again. I hope I’m wrong and you get a great response from them but from experience I don’t think I am. Thanks for your comment and I’m crossing my fingers for you 😉

  43. ND
    July 26, 2011 at 11:12 pm

    Dorothy, thank you so much for your positive feedback. You are of course quite right, and hopefully my dream job is just out there waiting for me. I am not from a government background and although I throw myself into any role I do, I have found the entrenched attitudes and lack of willingness to take accountability for actions and decisions very frustrating during my time here. So hopefully I can now find an organisation that is a better fit in terms of professionalism. I am a naturally sociable person, however in order to improve processes for my team (to improve customer service delivery to residents), I have had to stand up to some people who probably didn’t appreciate it. I went about it in a pleasant, professional manner, but I suspect I was viewed as a bit challenging. I know my team appreciates how much I have improved things for them, and fear my traditionally quick response to issues raised will, under the new structure, be lost in ‘process’ as is the government way. The last overall manager actually refused to speak to people at all, and I see the new one behaving the same way. Still that’s no longer my problem, and I will put the valuable experience I have gained to good use somewhere else, hopefully. Thanks again for your kind words and insight.

    1. July 26, 2011 at 11:45 pm

      Hi ND,
      You sound like a driven person who goes for things that they want. I like that. You’re also right that it’s not your problem that your manager refuses to speak to people. Don’t let other peoples hang ups or bad behaviour effect you. The hardest part of a job is trying to get a long with everyone. My one suggestion I gave to another “challenging” manager was to just loosen up and relax a little more. Let things unfold before you rush in and try to control the situation. I’m not saying you’re like that at all but I think everyone and it doesn’t matter what level of seniority they have should relax more and show some common courtesy/respect to other people. If we all did that office life would be so much more pleasant. Thanks again for the comment and good luck.

  44. Jamie
    July 27, 2011 at 5:16 am

    Thank you Dorothy! I took in everything you said, and I realize that I tried to be TOO personable in my interview. As in, I made it more of a casual atmosphere, so they’d see HOW I AM, rather than making it 100% professional & convincing them of HOW I WORK. Also, I wanted to ask, could the following factors also have been deal breakers? First; at my previous job I was making more than the job I interviewed for. Second; I went to college, and the field I went to college for, is nowhere near the field I would have been hired in. (Think “veterinarian” to “credit card specialist”) Very apples & oranges type stuff. The hiring recruiter warned me, that the hiring manager may see my pay cut if I take this job as a risk meaning I would leave the first chance I got if I were to be paid more. The starting pay of this job is still way above average though, so I let her know I did not mind. And third; in the first interview with the hiring manager, she brought up that I have been an office manager for 3 companies, basically my entire life, and that the position I would be taking is not that at all. She said she thought it may be hard for me to take direction after being in a higher position for so long. I reassured her, that did not bother me as I am very much so a team player. Then the last interviewers brought up my college degree wondering if I would decide to pursue that in the future. I’m thinking they also may have wondered if I’d up & quit if I suddenly had a change of heart. It felt like I had 3 strikes against me; the pay cut, the office manager positions, and the schooling, all before I even had a chance to prove myself, what is your take on this? I’m learning a lot from this process though & I’m going to definitely sign up for that newsletter! :0)

    1. July 27, 2011 at 12:57 pm

      Hi Jamie,
      How much money you made in your previous job should not matter when you’re in job interviews because they should not know how much money you made. You NEVER want to tell anyone how much money you make. If the new job is considerably less money than you are used to than it’s your decision to take it or not. If the company finds out that you made $100K and they can only offer you $50K max than yes that is a concern but it all depends on how you spin it. You maybe changing careers and that often leads to a salary cut. If you’re entering a new field you need to show/prove during the interview that money is not a concern it’s the experience and skills that is more important to you. Remember someone can be making over $100K and absolutely hating their job and then they find there dream job or passion and they end up earning only $40K. They earn less but are SO much happier. In regards to the college degree, for me it doesn’t matter what field people graduate with because honestly the majority of people just don’t use their degree or work in the field that they studied. I actually graduated from University with a bachelor in Economic, Urban Geography. I worked in Urban Planning for one summer and hated it. I did go back and get my HR degree but before that I just told employers that it’s just simply not the field I wanted to get into. A lot of people also get certain degrees because they are pressured by parents, friends etc. So the answer is no it doesn’t matter that you went to college for something completing different but just be aware you will be asked why that didn’t work out and you just need to be honest.

      All of your challenges; not using your college degree, applying to less senior level roles, making less money (even though I can’t stress enough that it’s no ones business how much you make) are not real challenges if you are changing careers. You need to be upfront in your first interview when you’re asked “Tell me about yourself”. This is where you can explain your situation. These 3 strikes will no longer be strikes for you when YOU bring them up. During a job interview you need to be honest and confront these issues and then quickly focus on how this new job better aligns with your future career goals and how your skills are an asset. Hope that helps and good luck 🙂

  45. Jamie
    July 27, 2011 at 7:11 pm

    Dorothy, again, thank you for your time! I’ve always known not to discuss pay in an interview, it was actually the recruiter over the phone who asked what my starting pay and ending pay was at my previous jobs. And of course, that’s when the pay issue got brought up with her over the phone. Nevertheless, I sent the interviewers Thank You’s anyways, and have decided to use their interview as practice & know now how to better conduct my next ones. Thank you again for all of your help. I really appreciate it, best of luck in the future to you (and Pepper) as well! :0)

    1. July 27, 2011 at 7:30 pm

      Hey Jamie,
      Finding out what a candidate is making is honestly like winning the jackpot for a recruiter. Your job is to hold back from answering this questions until you are offered the job. I wrote a post on How to Answer the Salary Question. I agree that you should take each unsuccessful interview as a practice run and hopefully learn from your mistakes. Good Luck!

  46. Lisa
    July 28, 2011 at 2:13 am

    Although I haven’t been to a fake interview.. (that I know of anyway.) I still feel like I have submitted resumes and then followed up for jobs that lead nowhere.. The one I was the most frustrated with was one I was very qualifed for. I had previously worked for a company that did the same exact thing, but the only difference was I have a Masters and they were asking for people with Bachelors.. Seriously.. It’s frustrating because I didn’t even get called for an interview..

    One of my other friends was telling me that sometimes recruters scan resumes and those programs look for specific words then pull those resumes for review… Is there any truth or help for this topic, because I have a lot of experience, but no one is taking any bites..

    Thanks again for the article and I look forward to reading others..

    1. July 28, 2011 at 2:30 am

      Hi Lisa,
      I completely understand when people feel frustrated when they don’t get interviews. Unfortunately, when you become a chronic job hunter you forget about the importance of a good cover letter and resume. Make sure that you are changing your cover letter and resume to really fit each job application. Also, you should also not only submit an application but call the company, HR, recruiter or who evers contact you can get and start selling yourself. People tend to be passive job hunters and if you are feeling that it’s not working anymore than you need to try something new. In regards to what recruiters scan for when reading a resume, recruiters are looking for specific “keywords” that tells us that you have read the job description and are qualified for the job therefore, you will be invited to an interview. Some scans are done by the recruiter and others are done by the recruitment application system. You can read more about “keywords” on this post I wrote on How To Find The Right Resume Keywords. I hope that helps.

  47. Lisa
    July 28, 2011 at 2:39 am

    I also had another question??

    One place I applied called me to ask me some further questions after I submitted my resume, cover letter, and writing sample. She asked me some further questions like why I wanted to work for the company, why I wanted to work in Adopiton, and if I plan to stay in the area since I had just moved from a city 5 hours away to be closer to my family. They question I wasnt prepared for was when she asked my if I had applied for other jobs and which ones? How do I answer that question? I said I had applied for some jobs in other fields but I wasnt sure if I wanted to work as a Medical Social Worker instead of in Adoptions…

    I received another email from them later saying that they did fill the position.. As far as I can tell that would have been the only question to eliminate me from recieving an in person interview.. Any suggestions?

    1. July 28, 2011 at 2:45 am

      Hey Lisa,
      You need to be careful with phone interviews. Always be prepared and tell a recruiter what they want to hear so you can pass this test and be able to meet the hiring manager in a face-to-face interview and blow them away with your charm and experience 😉 How did she know that you moved 5 hours away to be closer to your family? sounds to me like your adding some personal points in your cover letter or resume that should be omitted. The best way to answer the question “Have you applied for other jobs and which ones?” is to say yes, I am currently looking for other opportunities and applying to jobs that interest me. You NEVER want to say what other jobs or companies you are applying to. It’s simply not there business and it shouldn’t make a difference either. If they hear that you are applying to jobs that are in different fields because you aren’t sure if you want to do than it looks like you are unorganized and not focused. Not traits that a company is looking for in a candidate. Stay focused and don’t get caught answering phone interview questions that are trying to screen you OUT rather than screen you in. Any reason a recruiter can find to omit you from an interview allows us to focus on more serious candidates. Thanks for submitting these great comments. I’m sure other people will find them helpful. Thanks and don’t worry about spelling mistakes as I am the worst when it comes to grammer, spelling and punctuation 😉 Good Luck!

  48. Lisa
    July 28, 2011 at 2:40 am

    Lot’s of spelling errors in that last comment.. sorry… LOL

  49. Sarah
    July 28, 2011 at 2:53 am


    I enjoyed your article.. I am a new graduate and after I received my Bachelors I went on through to get my Masters in Social Work. I did my internship in Child Protective Services, which for the social work world it’s basically the best one you could get.. BUT.. As I was completing school and my internship hours I found that I really want to explore the Medical side of social work. It is extremely hard to get experience in a hospital. I have tried to apply for social work positions that are open in all the hospitals in my area, and have even applied to become a volunteer. I have even gone as far as to apply for lower positions that just require high school diplomas sometimes. Now 6 weeks later almost all of the positions I have applied for have either been denied (with a lovely rejection email) or are yet to be filled.. How can I gain experience if I’m given no chances? And once summer ends (because most volunteer positions are closed for summer too) should I continue to try to volunteer with the hopes I will eventually gain enough experience to get some type of job… Let me know if you have any suggestions.

    1. July 28, 2011 at 3:00 am

      Hi Sarah,
      When your goal is so specific i.e. to work in a hospital setting the key to land an interview and then hopefully a job is to change your resume. In your case I would dumb down your resume. Possibly remove your Masters degree but that depends on the job you are applying to. As you know recruiters don’t want to hire over qualified candidates and if you are applying to be a cleaner, Admin Assistant etc. your Masters degree is very confusing. Also, hospital settings are usually filled with union jobs that are alone very difficult to get into. I think you need to volunteer at a hospital and then network and meet as many people as possible. I’m sure once a few hiring managers get to know you as a volunteer they will help open doors for the career you want. Remember to dumb down your resume and don’t just submit applications online to a hospital. Go in and apply in person. Try going directly to the volunteer department and sell yourself. Again, this is when being passive will not get you the job you want especially in a difficult setting like in a hospital or union job. Good Luck!

  50. Erin
    July 28, 2011 at 3:00 pm

    I love your website! And I would love to get your opinion on something.

    I am in the process of relocating from Chicago to Columbus. I am a graphic designer and was recommended by a friend for a job in the marketing department at a retail company in Columbus. A day after she sent my resume and website to HR, I got a call to set up an interview. They were very excited about my portfolio and said the Director was thrilled with my work. I was very excited because the position would be a great opportunity. I had my first interview over the phone with HR and it went well. Then she called me about 2 days later to set up a second interview. She wanted me to come for an in-person interview, but unfortunately I had some scheduling conflicts because I had a few major deadlines at work that week and a week long vacation planned for the following week. Therefore, they agreed to so a Skype interview and seemed very understanding about my conflicts. I met with four different people during the Skype interview and it took about 3 hours. They even had IT set up a large screen and projector for the interview. I thought this interview went really well too. The Director was even talking about how they would love to have another Ohio State alumni working there and spent most of her time talking to me about my job responsibilities, and less time actually quizzing me. After the interviews, the HR woman said they would be in touch within two weeks and asked if I would be available to talk, if they needed to contact me during my vacation. I said I would be, and I also let them know that I could come in for an in-person meeting after I got back from vacation, because my deadlines and schedule would be much calmer. I sent thank you emails to all four people that I spoke with before leaving for vacation, and I never got a response back. Now I have been anxiously awaiting to hear back from them, and it’s been a week a half. I sent a follow up email to HR Monday evening (very short, just saying I was still very interested and would still be available to come in and meet the team in person), and she hasn’t responded either. I am now getting really worried because I thought it went so well, and I was recommended for the job by someone who works there. What should I do if the HR recruiter never responds? Is it a bad sign if no one responded to my thank you emails? And is a week and half a long time to wait after a second interview? The HR recruiter did mention during my interview that they are still talking to other candidates and are hoping to fill the position soon.

    1. July 28, 2011 at 4:18 pm

      Hi Erin,
      I think it’s great that you were recommended by a friend but dealing with candidates that are out of town is difficult. Skype is a great tool but most of the time hiring a local is quicker. I understand that you had scheduling conflicts but since they are hoping to fill the position soon it might be easier to hire someone local rather than wait for you to give notice and relocate. Regarding your Thank You note, normally you do not get a response or need one. The point of that letter is just to say thank you for taking the time to interview me and leaving a professional and lastin impression. Since you sent a follow up email with no response my feeling is that you did not get the job. I think this interview might have just been a courtesy interview for your friend who recommended you. I maybe wrong but in my experience for an out of towner to be hired they would have to have blown everyone away in the interview. It all comes down to how quick they need to fill the job and if you were the successful candidate they would have started the ball rolling already. Hope I’m wrong and thanks for leaving this comment.

  51. Lisa
    July 28, 2011 at 6:48 pm

    Thanks for the tips..

    The person who called me was taking the information about me moving from Spokane to Seattle from where I got my degrees to where I am currently living.. but you offered a lot of help to me in changing how I respond to those questions from phone interviews..

    Thanks so much!!

  52. Mike
    July 29, 2011 at 12:23 pm

    I am curious if my interview yesterday was a fake interview. I got a call from their HR department for a job out of state. She informed me they wouldn’t assist in relocation and I let them know I was okay with that. She had originally mentioned me to come for a face to face, but was willing to try to schedule a phone interview since of the large distance. I assured them I would travel if needed. The Marketing Manager contacted me via email that night and was very nice and set up a schedule for a phone interview to make sure I was a good fit before I traveled all the way out there. We had a few email exchanges and set the interview for the next day. On the phone she was very pleasant and we seemed to get a long great. She discussed the company and the expectations of the job and I followed up with a handful of questions. She acknowledged that she thought I would be a good fit but mentioned the only difficulty is the distance, but said that I seemed that I would work with them on that. After our “interview” was over she said she should be finished with her interviews by the end of next week and if it was decided to be one of the top candidates then I would be called to come in for a face-to-face. She didn’t ask for references and I also didn’t get any reply to my follow up “thank you” email. Which perhaps that is too much to expect her to respond, but she had been so quick with her replys prior to our interview, I was a little surprised of the no response. She also lead me to believe she actually wrote the ad, and being the Marketing Manager, it seems that she is the one making the hiring decisions. So I am thinking perhaps it was fake, or she would have scheduled me to come in person right then and there. What are your thoughts? Thank you.

    1. July 29, 2011 at 12:30 pm

      Hi Mike,
      I don’t think this was a fake interview at all. I think candidates need to realize that applying and getting a job that is out of state without physically meeting the team is difficult. The face-to-face interview is so important and that’s why locals have an edge. I think you need to stay focused and stay engaged with the recruiter. Don’t let them forget about you. Send another email reminding them that you have the qualities and skills that they are looking for. Did you befriend the recruiter? Developing a good relationship with the recruiter is key so he/she votes for you when all the cards are down. In regards to your “thank you” email. Why and what kind of a response where you expecting back? The point of a Thank you email is simply for you to thank them for taking the time to meet/speak with you. They are not going to respond back to thank you for your thank you email. That’s just silly. She didn’t ask for references probably because she hasn’t interviewed enough candidates. She wants to compare you to other perhaps local candidates and thats why she didn’t invite you to another interview right away. I think you need to be patient and wait for her response. Also, it’s usually never up to one person alone to make a hiring decision. Be patient and I’m sure you’ll hear back from them soon. If it’s takes more than a week as they promised then contact them and ask for an update but always be polite. Good Luck and stay positive 🙂

  53. Jenny
    July 29, 2011 at 6:32 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Your article is really helpful. I just had an interview today and I am not sure if it was a “fake interview”. I really prepared for this interview and I know I was able to answer all his questions very well. I actually applied for a personal banker position. They only have openings in Ohio and Florida, and I am currently staying here in Virginia. I still applied anyway, and I did not mention in my application what state I would like to work for because I was hoping that an opening would come up here in Virginia. So, last week, I got a call from HR (no phone interview) inviting me for a face-to-face interview with the HR recruiter. During the interview, he would always say “very good” after I answer each of his questions. However, the only thing that he wrote down on his notes was if I would like to work on a full-time or part-time basis. Then at the end of the interview the recruiter told me that there are currently no open personal banker positions and if ever a new position becomes open, they would look for internal candidates first then with external candidates. At that point, I really felt that I did not get the job, and when I asked when I can expect to hear from him, he told me that he does not know because there are no open positions yet. Then he also said that the interview was not so bad. When he said those words I knew that the interview did not go well at all because if it did, he would have used the words “good job” instead of “not so bad”, right? 🙁 So do you think it was a “fake interview” or I just did not do well?

    Thank you in advance.

    1. July 29, 2011 at 7:18 pm

      Hi Jenny,
      This was a fake interview. Since the company has openings in Ohio and Florida they probably have some sort of policy to post the jobs in all of there locations and if local people apply they need to interview. The recruiter was clear with you and said that there weren’t any open positions available. He just interviewed you because he had to due to policy and/or so they can see what kind of candidates they would potentially recruit for this job in the future when there is an opening. He did not write anything down because this was more of a conversation/informational interview rather than the real thing. I think you probably did well but since they are not hiring right now they weren’t really looking at you as a potential candidate. If you really want to work there than I would suggest keeping an eye out on their job board for local position only. At least you noticed this as a “fake interview” and hopefully you can bounce right back and be ready for your next interview. Sorry but again each interview is great practice and makes you more and more comfortable. Thanks for leaving the comment and good luck!

  54. Anonymous
    July 31, 2011 at 12:37 pm

    Thank you for this article. I had a job interview where I knew 3 of their current employees in the department. They were looking to hire someone immediately and I was jumping at the opportunity to get hired right away. It seemed like a perfect match and the job was everything I had ever wanted. I was called in for a first interview with the director and it went much better than I had thought. At the end of the interview, she told me she would love for me to come in for a second interview with a panel. The second interview came and I felt very confident about it. I felt like I nailed every question they had and was also able to develop really great repor with the panel. They all seemed to really like me and the unique answers I gave. After that second interview, I waited almost weeks for them to contact me but they didn’t. So I sent an email restating my interest in the position, and asking for an update. The director emailed back and said that there were numerous applicants in which they had only asked 3 candiates to come back for a second interview (me being one of those). They had an extremely tough decision making the final decision and they had narrowed it down to me and the other candidate. But they offered the job to the other candidate because he/she presented with more experience in that certain position. — Anyways, I was so disappointed. I felt like I had the job in the bag. I am disappointed that it always has to come down to the experience (which I don’t have very much of other than internships I had in college and graduate school). But, I was very glad to hear that even with hardly any experience, I was a top candidate.

    1. July 31, 2011 at 1:23 pm

      Hi Anonymous,
      Thank you for sharing your story. I bet if they could have hired two people they would have hired you too. Unfortunately companies do want to hire the best person with the most relevant experience over the candidate that might be a little more green. Sounds like once you get some more work history on your resume you will have no problem getting job offers. Stay confident and since you were one of the top candidates in this interview try to remember every answer you gave so you can use it again 😉

  55. Mike
    August 1, 2011 at 9:38 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    Thank you for your reply. You gave a complete different perspective on potential signs that I deemed to probably be negative. I have some renewed hope that I still may get a follow up interview. I had thought of befriending her on LinkedIn, but was hesitant if that would be on the “too aggressive” side, so I haven’t yet. I understand exactly what you meant regarding the thank you letter. I didn’t expect her to thank me for it, perhaps I was expecting a generic email just saying it was nice talking to you, we will be in touch…yada yada..but you are right. That expectation is silly. The references thing I think I read from one of your other blogs being a potential sign of not getting a job if they don’t ask for references, but perhaps I misread it and it didn’t apply to this circumstance. Nevertheless, I understand the difficulty of applying for a job out of state and patience is the name of the game. I appreciate your advice and hopefully will hear something soon.

  56. Anonymous
    August 1, 2011 at 1:20 pm

    Its not true that if they don’t ask for references you are not getting the job. That is not the case most of the time. Some companies have policies not to contact previous managers and rely on a background check

    1. August 1, 2011 at 5:58 pm

      Hi Anonymous,
      It’s true not all companies do a reference check but the majority of companies do check references and/or do a background checks. Either way they need your permission before they can contact anyone. If they don’t ask your permission then it doesn’t look good for a candidate but if they do that means they are interested enough to go to the next step of the process and that’s what everyone wants when they go to a job interview. Thanks for the comment.

  57. Anonymous
    August 5, 2011 at 4:44 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I am grateful for finding such insightfull responses. I feeling a bit down about the rejection email I received this morning. I tend to always end up sales positions almost as a crutch. I got marrried recently, and left my job prematurely in search of a more stable 9-5 job. I know that your should never do that, but I did. I am 30 and looking for a long career. Interviewing has been one of my strong suits until recently? I learned several years ago “winging it” does not cut it. I found a company I have been wanted to work for applied for a good job online. Passed online test, passed onsite assessment, and first interview with recruiter. I was extremely prepared, made it all the way to the second interview with the managers. It was behavorial interview, and I felt really confident based on their responses. Manager even thanked me for such a productive interview and for my articulate answers which was good feedback so I thought? They were smiling, engaged throughout the interview. The interview was an hour, flowed nicely. I ask what the next steps in the interview process was etc. I have had bad interview before, but this felt great. I am so confused??? This process is very daunting. Thank you for any feedback.

    1. August 6, 2011 at 11:00 am

      Hi Anonymous,
      First I want to say that you need to stay positive and remember that no two interviews are the same. Secondly, it is very rare that you would receive negative feedback during an interview. The recruiter and hiring manager want everyone to leave thinking they did a great job in the interview so that is why everyone occasionally will hear statements like “good answer” or be thanked for a productive interview or any other compliments. I don’t think you need to change a thing in your approach to a job interview. If you feel that you are strong in interviews than I’m sure you are. Your confidence is going to help you land a job. I’m sure you really wanted that job and I’m sorry that they didn’t pick you but maybe the interviewers thought that you would not get a long with the rest of the team or wouldn’t fit well with the company culture. Having a great answers to interview questions and being confident is absolutely the way to go to get a job offer but it also does come down to a fit with the company. In any case, don’t be confused because you did great! Keep applying to other jobs that interest you and you will find a company that will think that you are a fantastic package; great qualities, experience and personality. Good Luck and thanks for the comment.

  58. Roy
    August 7, 2011 at 4:41 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Thanks for a great article! How often is it that companies ask for references? I’ve had 3 serious consulting/project management jobs so far and nobody has ever asked me for references.


    1. August 9, 2011 at 8:48 am

      Hi Roy,
      I have spoken to many HR managers and recruiters and we all fee that conducting reference checks are very important. Saying that, I do know that some companies are fine with brief background checks. These checks pretty much just verify employment rather then being provided with references from a past manager or supervisor. Also, if you were referred to the company by a current employee some companies take that as a references rather then formally asking you for references. There are a lot of companies out there and they all handle references a different way. Thanks for the comment.

  59. Luis
    August 9, 2011 at 10:20 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    This is what happened to my friend: he got an interview with a car dealership for a car sales position. He went on a Monday and told me his interviews went pretty well. Then, the HR department called him back Tuesday and asked him back on Wednesday for second (an apparently) final round of interviews. My friend told me, the managers were impressed and everything went pretty well. Finally, the HR guy told him they were going to call him back the following monday with an offer. Her never called….. so my friend waiting until Wednesday.. the HR guy called him back later that day saying they were going to start sending the offers that afternoon.. nothing happened… my friend was so discouraged.. he waited a full week, and got the same answer from the HR guy. I told him, he might not get the offer, but why would the HR person be like that? I mean, if he did not get the job, just say so? My friend is still waiting and hoping for the best. He has not been able to find a job in quite a while. Is there something going on we are not aware of? Or, what do you think?


    Luis M.

    1. August 10, 2011 at 10:43 am

      Hi Luis,
      Did they check references or do a background check for your friend? Sounds to me that this car dealership either does not have a really HR department, meaning they just gave some guy the extra responsibility to look after hiring and they have no idea what they are doing or that the HR guy is just really bad at his job. I hope this is not another case of a recruiter who can’t do his job and just tell a candidate that he is not right for the job. The only other thing I can think of is that the HR guy tried to explain that offers are going out this afternoon and if you don’t hear from us then you were not chosen. Either way it’s not the right way to treat a candidate. I totally agree with you if a person did not get the job then the recruiter should just say so. Thank for the comment.

  60. Elise
    August 10, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    I had an interview with at&t for an Assistant Manager Position. I was called by the recruiter and met with the hiring manager. I recently finished school. I graduated with a Bachelor Science Psychology. My interview was this past Friday. The interviewer said that internal interviews were to be done on Saturday. I am not sure how long it is supposed to take to get a call back. I met with the hiring manager and was asked to bring two copies of my resume. When I got there she asked for the copies imediately and I answered some scenario and personal questions about what I feel is ethical. I think the interview went good. I would like to be hired and I think at&t is a strong company for promising employment. At the end of the interview she said I have great communication skills and thats good. She also said that she would never send anyone to a second interview unless they were 6 months to finishing their Degree or had one currently and that I feel in that range. I am not sure what that means. Interestingly enough I didnt bring my cell phone on the interview because i didnt want an interuption. However, her phone was turned up and it rang three times. Each time she ignored it. I dont think I will get this job, but I guess its just another practice if I dont hear back from anyone this week. However, Ive heard it can take a while for anyone to be hired at this company. Ive never been given positive feedback on any interview so this is the first comapny to actually catch my attention. Im looking to make enough to sustain myself. This comapny offers a good base pay.

    1. August 10, 2011 at 1:30 pm

      Hi Elise,
      I don’t see why you think you will not get this job. Everything sounds good to me so far. I would send the recruiter a Thank You email and remind them that you are still very interested in pursuing this role. Next time you have an interview really ask them for a timeline on when they will get back to candidates. This helps you relax because it gives you an actual date on when you will hear from them. The most important thing is for the company not to forget you. So follow up and stay positive. Good Luck and thank you for the comment.

  61. Worried
    August 11, 2011 at 6:50 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    Thank you for your post and all of your follow-up comments! I tried reading them all to see if a scenario like mine has been addressed, but I thought I would just go ahead and ask you what you think of my interview situation…

    July 4th: I submitted an online application (stating an employee referral) to the job of my dreams for a very large, world-wide company. I am currently employed but trying to transition into another industry.

    July 5th: I got a phone call from an out-of-state recruiter, asking if I had time for a few questions or if we should set up another time to talk. So excited, I told her that I could speak to her then. The screening went well, I thought. I answered her questions, tried to do a little small talk, and I gave her the name of a person inside the company that told me about the job. She told me that the hiring manager should contact me in 1-2 weeks. (Apparently, right after our conversation, she called my friend and asked him about me. He said that she seemed to really like me and that he recommended me for the job.)

    July 17th: I hadn’t heard from recruiting or the hiring manager, so I sent a quick email for an update. The recruiter answered back the next day, saying she wasn’t sure why the process was taking longer than expected, but she was thankful that I followed up. She mentioned that she spoke to the hiring manager “late last week and he is definitely interested in speaking with you”.

    July 27th: I got a phone call from someone at the local branch to set up an on-site interview. She originally wanted to schedule it for the following Tuesday, but since I would be out of town for work, I asked to schedule it on Thursday.

    August 4th: Interview day. I was nervous, even though I had prepared. I arrived 20 minutes early, but instead of waiting for the manager, we just started the interview early. It was mostly small-talk – no real tough interview questions. He asked if I knew about the company, the position… I said yes to both with details, and I told him I spoke with my former colleague about the position. He started to tell me about the benefits and asked about salary requirements. He heard that his manager was in the office, so he brought her in, who asked me more questions. I feel like I did well, and she even commented (several times) that I hit the nail on the head. We talked and laughed. When it was my turn to ask questions, that led to more discussion of the position, and I felt that it only showed my interest. I asked about the next steps in the interview process, and they said a second interview probably won’t be needed since I was able to come at a time when the manager’s manager was in that day. I asked when I should hear back from them, and they said “we’ll let you know next week”. After his boss left, it was just me and hiring manager again, and we talked for a while about different things, mostly about his professional career. I was probably there for an hour to an hour and 15 minutes.

    Today has been a week. It’s so hard to think of anything else. I felt like I did well, though not really well since I was a little nervous. I know their process has been kinda slow, but I feel like if I did well on the interview, and I’ve been recommended by an employee, it shouldn’t take that long to give me an offer – if I was to get one.

    Sorry for such a long post! What are your thoughts? Please help!

    1. August 11, 2011 at 11:31 am

      Hi Worried,
      Thank you for the very detailed comment. I actually really like long posts 😉 Here is what I think. I think this company is not in a rush to hire. They posted the job and you were referred by an employee (Great!). Since they think you did very well in the interview and so do you I think you don’t need to worry. You unfortunately just need to wait. This is obviously the hard part, even harder than actually going through some interviews 🙂 Since they said that “they will let you know next week” I would send them another follow up email. Keep in mind since you’re a referral they probably know that you won’t be accepting other positions and are keen about working there. For them they don’t need to rush you an offer cause you aren’t going anywhere, which is not a bad thing. So I suggest that you keep the lines of communication open but don’t pester them or be annoying or you’ll lose it. I would also ask your friend who referred you if he could find out what the hold up is or if they are thinking of offering the job to you. Other than that I say that it sounds like you did very well and I’m sure an offer is coming but again the company is not in a rush and neither are you since you are working. Do you have the email of the hiring managers that you met? I nice follow up/reminder that you are perfect for the job email wouldn’t hurt either. Just be patient, don’t let them forget about you and try to get some sleep. My fingers will be crossed for you 🙂

  62. Less Worried
    August 11, 2011 at 2:32 pm

    Thanks so much for your quick response, Dorothy!

    I feel somewhat confident, since I had a fairly good interview, and I have a good recommendation from an employee that is in the same position that I am applying for – only he works at another location. He said he will try to find out what’s going on.

    I will also send an email to the hiring manager, asking for an update and again expressing my enthusiasm for the position. Should I send an email to his manager (the other one that interviewed me) for an update as well? Or just the hiring manager?

    The main reason why I am concerned about my situation is because the same thing happened to me two weeks ago. Had a great interview with another company and an employee referral, and I waited over a week to find out I didn’t get the job. I did get positive feedback from the recruiter when he called me back to follow up, saying the hiring managers had no negative comments whatsoever about my interview, which is good and bad – how can I improve if I don’t know what I did wrong?

    Bottom line is I don’t want a repeat of my last interview – this is my dream job!

    Thanks for your time!!

    1. August 11, 2011 at 2:40 pm

      Hi Less Worried,
      I would send an email to the hiring manager only. When a recruiter tells you they had no negative comments that actually is just an easy way out. Next time I would tell the recruiter that you want to know why you were not hired so you can improve on anything. Don’t be pushy but polite about it and stress that you would appreciate the feedback only to help improve your interview skills. Good Luck.

  63. DZ
    August 11, 2011 at 3:45 pm

    Hi Dorothy,
    I went on an on-site interview two weeks ago. At the end of the interview, the HM said they will make a decision the following week (i.e., last week) about selecting two candidates to have aother interview with the technical leader from the headquarter in another country. Last Friday I followed up and was told “Thanks for your follow up. I am glad that you are still interested in the position. The position is still open as we are still in the interview process. I believe you will know something more from us in the next 2 weeks. ” According to your understanding of this message, do you think they have some reason for delay in making a decision or I am not one of the two candidates selected for the next step?
    Thank you very much for your inputs.

    1. August 11, 2011 at 4:02 pm

      Hi DZ,
      Sounds to me that you are not one of the two candidates selected for the next step. They don’t want to go out and say that you are not until they actually get the contract signed so you are on the B list of candidates. If the person doesn’t accept then maybe they can go back and ask the B candidates. This is the reason they are “glad that you are still interested in the position”. Sorry DZ and good luck on your next interviews.

  64. So Sad
    August 12, 2011 at 5:09 pm

    Hi Dorothy!

    I had an interview last Wednesday, August 10th for an Accounting position. I was interviewed by the accounting manager and supervisor. The interview went well and they also discussed the benefits of the position such as 401k, work hours, etc. After the interview, they told me that they will still be interviewing other candidates and that they will call me on Friday afternoon (August 12th) for the results. Today is already Friday, and they didn’t call. Does this mean I wasn’t chosen for the job? I thought they will still call even if I wasn’t chosen for the job. What do you think? Thanks!

    1. August 12, 2011 at 5:56 pm

      Hi So Sad,
      Sometimes recruiters are busy or get overwhelmed with other interviews that they are doing. I would not be discouraged just yet. I would wait until Tuesday and if you don’t hear anything by then I would contact the recruiter via email or phone on Wednesday to ask for an update. Recruiters are busy. Your role is usually not the only one they are working on. I hope you hear from someone on Monday but if you don’t remember to be patient 🙂

  65. Paul Lewis
    August 14, 2011 at 9:25 am

    Hi Dorthy, I’m looking for your take on my situation.

    I applied for a position with a competing company that was opening a new location in my city. I am extremely well qualified for the position and had really good references on my side. I first interviewed with the manager and everything seemed to go really well and he told me that he would set up a second interview for me with his assistant manager who is in charge of the hiring. Two weeks went by before finally getting a call for the interview. This interview went as good as it could have in my opinion. We had a great conversation and really hit it off, and everything was looking great. He said the only thing he needed to do was to get permission from corporate to hire outside of the company as they are big on promoting within.
    Two days after the interview, I followed up with a thank you letter to his email. Over two weeks went by and I hadn’t heard anything, so I figured that I didn’t get it, no big deal. So I sent an email to the assistant manager again, simply thanking him for his time, and that I was sorry thing didn’t work out. I thought that would be the end of it. He then responded to my email by saying that I’m still the one he wants to hire and the process has started, he’s just waiting for HR to do up the papers. He asked me to be patient and that he looks forward to working with me. Another two weeks went by without me hearing from him. He then phoned me to tell me that the VP was coming to town this week and wants to meet me, and he’ll let my know a time and place ASAP. Well, again I didn’t hear anything for a week, so I emailed him asking for any news. He responded saying that the VP didn’t come to town, but was coming this week instead and he would let me know a time. This was a week ago today, and again, I haven’t heard back.

    Thoughts? Suggestions? I don’t want to seem impatient, but also don’t want to seem like I’m not interested. I do currently have a good job, so I can’t really lose in this situation, but obviously I’m anxious for some finality to this situation.

    1. August 14, 2011 at 10:05 am

      Hi Paul,
      It really sounds like they are not in a hurry to hire AT ALL. I don’t care that he said that they like to promote from within because if they had a good internal candidate this process would be over all ready. If you really want this job then I would be patient. Especially since you currently have a good job. The more patient you are the more the hiring manager is going to want you. Stay polite and continue to send follow up emails after deadlines that pass but you don’t hear anything. I have a feeling if you stick around and wait for this very SLOW process to finish you will be offered a job. They have invested so much time that I believe you will be able to negotiate a fantastic package for yourself. Be patient and stay positive 🙂 Good Luck!!

  66. Kristine
    August 14, 2011 at 4:08 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I need a little advice regarding a situation I am in right now.

    My former college advisor knows that I want to get into the advising field. She lets me know anytime a position opens up at her university that she thinks I should apply for. About a month and a half ago she had lunch with her friend who is also the director of advising, she gave her my name and told me to apply for a position that she was hiring for….I never heard anything, so I just moved on.

    Then about two weeks ago my advisor forwarded me an e-mail that the director sent her saying that she had the position posted and that it took longer than she anticipated, but she just wanted to let her know in case her referral is still interested (me). She even remembered my last name. I still have not heard anything, but my contact sent me another e-mail in which the director told her to tell me to apply for another position as well as the one that I had already applied for. This sounds really great because the position she wants me to apply for is a higher paying position then the other one.

    I am just confused and trying not to get my hopes up because I still have not heard from her directly. Could it be that the hiring process just takes a long time?

    What is your take on this?

    Thanks so much!

    1. August 14, 2011 at 4:58 pm

      Hi Kristine,
      I think that you should never just put all your hope and eggs in one basket i.e. your referral. When a friend refers you, you still need to be an active candidate and apply online to roles in that company that interest you. Since the Director said that it took longer to post the job than she expected I would then be a little more patient as the hiring process sounds like it maybe slower than usual. I would ask your friend if it would be alright for you to email the Director yourself. If she says yes then email the Director to let her know that you are interested in the two jobs that were referred to you by your friend and if she needed anymore information from you to please contact you anytime and that you are really looking forward for the chance to interview for both roles. Be patient as the the hiring process does sound that it will take a little longer but be proactive and stay engaged and follow up. Good Luck 🙂

  67. Paul Lewis
    August 14, 2011 at 5:54 pm

    Thank you very much for the advice. I’m trying to patient, but it’s just not in my nature to sit and wait. I like to talk, and have everything out in the open. It’s a lot easier since I do have a job that I’m good at and that I like already, but I feel as though I’m not fully applying myself with this possibility on my mind. I do appreciate the advice and hope that you’re right about a pending offer:).

  68. Marilyn
    August 15, 2011 at 2:25 pm

    Dear Dorothy,

    I hope that you are doing well. I enjoy reading your posts and wanted to ask for your advice on a recent interview. I’m a recent grad with an MPH and was referred by a friend for a position at a local health agency. The agency is a strong match for my skills and interests, and I spent 3 months pushing for an interview (either informational or for an open position). I finally got that chance on August 3 when a dept. director (not HR) called my cell phone at 9 PM on a Sunday to set up an interview for an open position (weird, I know…but stay with me).

    Interview day arrives, and I show up 30 minutes early. When the interviewer’s assistant takes me to her office, the interviewer is engaged in a long conference call. I sat and waited for 45 minutes (15 of which were past the scheduled interview time). Undeterred, I entered the office when it was my turn to speak with her and was met with a barrage of questions about my experience, salary requirements, and capabilities. I pushed specific internships that were related to the job at hand, stressed the skills that I gained from said internships that would be necessary for that role, and responded to the salary question with “I seek a salary that is the standard amount for a candidate of my background and experience.” I also stressed that I work well in groups and actually enjoy that and do have experience in grant-writing because those are required of the job in question–and my resume highlights those traits.

    While I know I maintained eye contact and was sincere in my answers, I have a sad feeling that she was a little too relaxed and disinterested during the process. Needless to say, she had no problem about rushing me out of the office. I made it a point to follow-up with a thank you letter to her, as well as my referral, indicating my interest in the position and how I would be the best candidate.

    Honestly, this interview and potential decision have me on edge. Although the interviewer was on vacation all of last week (she mentioned this when we were on the phone to schedule my interview), she indicated that she would try to have a decision for me last week. It is now Monday, August 15 and no answer in sight. I would like to send her a follow-up email tomorrow morning–is this a good idea? I’m at a point where I think there is something wrong with me and how I interview as I’ve been on 15 in-person interviews with one offer (the offer unfortunately fell through). What’s your take on the interview/potential decision?

    Thank you so much!

    1. August 15, 2011 at 2:35 pm

      Hi Marilyn,
      Don’t ever question a follow-up email. The idea of a thank you and/or follow-up email is for the interviewer to remember you. A follow-up email is just another way to stay engaged and keep you in there minds. When you’re polite and professional a follow-up email shows interest and persistence. Saying that I feel that this role may not be for you and you were part of a Fake Interview. First you pushed for 3 months for an interview and were also referred by a friend. I think the company felt pressure to interview you and since they had an opening (many companies don’t like or have the time to arrange informational interviews) they invited you in and might not have cared if you were qualified or not. You came in and the interviewer was too relaxed and disinterested during the process probably because he/she was just doing a Fake Interview. I am sorry but that is my take on your interview.
      Please don’t think that something is wrong with you. This line of thinking is not productive and has a huge impact on your confidence. Finding a job is VERY difficult. Keep trying and perhaps review the kind of roles you are applying to. Try not to look desperate even though I know that can be hard if you’ve been out of work for a little while and have gone through 15 interviews. You just need to remember that it’s not just your answers that hiring managers are looking at it’s body language as well. Stay positive and don’t ask for informational interviews unless you are changing careers and want to learn about the career and business. If you are asking for informational interviews in roles that are in your field it makes you look desperate and that’s not what you want. Thanks for leaving your comment and please STAY POSITIVE I’m sure you’ll find something soon but you need to be confident. Good Luck!

  69. Travis
    August 15, 2011 at 5:59 pm

    Hi Dorothy,
    I’d like your help in trying to figure out why I can’t get hired, even for low-level positions. I’m a recent public employee retiree with 25+ years experience in communications who relocated out west. I’ve been on job interviews in my field, one group and one departmental, and have interviewed as well as for other positions (sales, valet, clerical) that I’ve had some experience with during the course of a 40+ year work history – all without success. I’m well educated, experienced, have a professional appearance and I’m extremely healthy for a 60 year old.

    During my most recent interview for a full-time communications position at a prestigious hotel/resort, I made it to the second interview that was conducted by a twenty something year old. Like the initial interview with the department head, I believed the interview went well. I strongly felt, and was told so by the department head, that I “had the experience and skills” fit for the position. A few days later, I received a form email stating that I was not selected for the position.

    It has been 30 years since I had to interview for a job so I have researched online about interviewing techniques and prepared for each interview. I’m beginning to get concerned that I might be turned down because of my age (I know that will never be cited as a reason) or because I don’t have “corporate” experience.

    Any input into my situation would be much appreciated. Also, the job I alluded to above, is it acceptable to call or email asking if they could offer me any feedback from my interview and any strengths and/or weaknesses that they saw so that I can improve and be better prepared in the future.


    1. August 15, 2011 at 6:53 pm

      Hi Travis,
      Unfortunately, you might be right that you are being turned down for roles due to your age. This isn’t right and no company will ever come out and say that that is the reason. If your resume states that you have over 25 years of experience than recruiters and hiring manager know that they are looking at a more mature persons resume. Since you are obviously being invited to interviews (you resume is obviously not the problem) maybe it is your interview skills that need critiquing. Since I’ve never seen you interview I’m going to trust that you are well prepared and have good answers to common interview questions. I hope that you are up-to-date with technology/social media especially when applying to communications/PR/Media roles. One way to get some feedback on your interview skills is to go into a career center in a local college or community center. They can do some mock interviews with you and help you with any weakness they find. I am also a big believer on asking for feedback from your unsuccessful interviews. This is the only way someone will learn how to improve. The other thing I would suggest especially if your interviewee is in there 20’s is try to either relate to them or prove that customers/clients often prefer to speak/deal with a knowledgeable veteran rather than a younger person who is often perceived as a rookie and less knowledgeable. You need to exude confidence about your age, experience and knowledge. I hope my suggestions help you approach your next interview a little differently. Thanks for the comment and Good Luck!

  70. JDAWG
    August 15, 2011 at 7:00 pm

    I had an interview last Friday from 10am-4pm. I presented for 1 hr and then had 2-30 minute interviews with 2 individuals. I then had a lunch interview and a t0ur of the facility. I then had a 1 hour techincal interview followed by a 30 minute interview with the hiring manager. The hiring manager said it needed to be a unanimous decision and he would get back to me within two weeks. I finished the day with one last 30 minute interview and everything changed. The interviewer sat down and asked me if I was ready, I said yes and replied are you ready? I don’t think he liked that at all and I must of misread his intentions with that comment. The next 30 minutes made me very nervous. Because it has to be a unanimous decision I am worried based on the last interview. Any suggestions?

    1. August 15, 2011 at 7:05 pm

      Hi JDAWG,
      Your interviews sounded pretty intense. I’m not clear how many interviews you attended (meaning applying for separate roles) since you spoke with a hiring manager that said that he would get back to you within two weeks and then had a 30 minute interview. In any case, I’m sure the last interviewee was just trying to test you by seeing how well you would deal with pressure. You may have done really well all day and they wanted to see if they can make you crack. I wouldn’t over analyze it too much. Just be patient and don’t forget to follow-up with a thank you email. Good Luck!

  71. AJ
    August 15, 2011 at 7:13 pm

    Hi Dorothy,
    Your comment and this blog are terrific! Thanks for providing such valuable advice.

    Ok, so here is my scenario.

    I applied online to for a position and was contacted through linked in by the VP. I contacted him back and we had a terrific phone interview. He wanted to bring me in to meet with HR and the Pres right away. The HR guy called and set up a meeting with himself and the VP. Not the Pres. We had what I thought was a great interview. They gave me scenarios, and full info about their company and what they were looking for. I felt like I had the perfect answers and that we were a good match. I ended the interview asking if they had any concerns about my experience and ability regarding the position, so that we could address them. The VP immediately said no, he did not, and followed up with but we also talked earlier. The HR guy stated they would like to digest our conversation and that they have a few more interviews scheduled and will be bringing back “a few candidates” to meet with the Pres.
    No salary was discussed in this meeting, and so I am a bit disappointed. I sent follow up thank yous to each person and both wrote me back. The VP stating that he hopes to speak to me soon and the HR guy restating that they are interviewing more candidates this week to bring in a few for the Pres.

    So, am I getting the brush off, or do you think I am still in the running? I really want this position, and it seems perfect for me. Do I do anything else to convince?
    Thanks for any insight!

    1. August 15, 2011 at 7:19 pm

      Hi AJ,
      First, don’t be disappointed that salary was not discussed as salary is usually never discussed in interviews especially with the VP present. This would be discussed when an offer is made. I honestly think you are still in the running for this role but definitely make sure that you follow up or send a thank you email especially to the VP. In this email you do need to stress that you are not only a fit for the role with your skills and experience but are a fit for the company and you look forward to being part of such a great team. Don’t let them forget about you and also every recruiter/hiring manager will say that they are meeting with other candidates so you are not left thinking that you got the job or that they are desperate for any candidate. Remember to stay ENGAGED with the recruiter/VP or who ever you feel you made a connection with. Hope this helps and be patient but also persistent. GOOD LUCK!

  72. Sharon E
    August 17, 2011 at 12:18 am

    Hi Dorothy,
    Thank you for this very informative site. I’m curious, however, why I see so few posts from folks who have been out of work for months, if not a year or more, in the present economy. I have been barely surviving on unemployment plus a part-time cashier’s job since my company outsourced our entire department in May 2010. My state has the 3rd highest jobless rate in the U.S. and I’m told there are literally thousands of applicants for most openings. Yet most of the posts here are by people who are currently working and wish to change jobs, or who have only been looking for a few weeks. Are folks like me not salvageable?

    1. August 17, 2011 at 7:47 am

      Hi Sharon,
      Thanks for leaving a comment and unfortunately many people are in your situation and are unemployed/on unemployment/have a survival job but don’t want to share that publicly on a website. Many people feel more comfortable contacting me directly through my contact me page where they share their stories and frustrations with the job market and economy. So it’s definitely not that you are not salvageable so please stop even getting into that mind set. You need to stay positive and feel confident that these hard times will pass. You are not alone.

  73. ria
    August 17, 2011 at 8:13 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    this is a wonderful blog. thanks for taking time out to read and help other people.

    I was planning to apply with a university for an academic position and had got in touch with the lead recruiter ( a senior professor) identified in the advert. After initial exchanges, he asked me to apply and I was working on my CV etc. Now during that time, I saw another new advert with the same dept – similar position but on a different subject. I felt that my competencies had better fit with the new advert and thought that it was right for me to apply for the new post. Since the new post was with the same dept – but with a different lead recruiter, I wrote to the earlier recruiter who had encouraged me to apply thanking him for his encouragement but letting him know that I felt that I had a better sync with the new advert job and was planning to apply for the same instead of this. He replied thanking me and wished me all the best. After this, I got in touch with the new lead recruiter (another senior professor given i the advert) and he too encouraged me to apply for the new job and also said that he would be willing to discuss the post with me. A colleague had told me that it is always better to meet the recruiters in person before short listing process begins, so i wrote to the lead recruiter that I would be happy to come down to the Uni (which incidently) is in a different city than mine (about an hour by train) and discuss the post informally with him. It is five days and I still have not heard from him. I wonder whether I made a mistake in asking him whether i could come down for a meeting with him? Why do you think he has not yet replied? Is it wrong to meet candidates before the formal interviews or is there any other cultural reason – I am not from UK and so would be greatful if you could shed light on this. Have I already blown my chances for this post. I feel very anxious about not hearing from the professor as he had seemed very positive about my applying for the post..


    1. August 17, 2011 at 10:03 am

      Hi Ria,
      I honestly believe that recruiters or hiring managers don’t have the time to meet with potential candidates to discuss a role before an interview. That is what a formal interview is for. I would have not listened to your friend and just spoke with the recruiter on the phone. Having a real conversation rather an email is much more personal and that’s where you can try to connect with the recruiter and see if you have other things in common. I think it’s fine that you asked to come in but now you need to follow-up especially since you received no response. Don’t be passive that’s the worst thing you can be. Be active and call the recruiter. Recruiters love a confident candidate who does not hide behind an email. Call the recruiter ask them again if they think it’s a good idea for you to come in person to discuss the role before the formal interviews and if not you would be happy to speak with them over the phone first. Stress that you are very interested in the role and working at the University. Try to mention a few of the qualities that match their requirements for candidacy and I’m sure they will be happy to talk with you. People have to remember and not to be afraid to take initiative. Don’t just always put it on the recruiter. Pick up the phone and say that you would love to come in person to discuss the role rather than wait for the recruiter to read an email, then forget about the email and essentially forget about you. Being persistent, confident and an active candidate will land you an interview and hopefully the job. It’s not to late Ria, contact the recruiter and Good Luck!!

  74. AJ
    August 17, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    Thanks Dorothy for your advice!! Keep up the great work, this forum is really great for all of us anxious job seekers. Best, AJ

  75. Marilyn
    August 17, 2011 at 10:06 pm

    Thank you so much for your advice, Dorothy! I will definitely work on the confidence bit because you’re right, landing a job is simply hard work. Being negative isn’t going to get me anywhere. A question regarding informational interviews: Is it okay to out-right ask a place if positions are available within their department or will that just lead to a fake interview? I asked some department chairs about hospital positions and have a phone call lined up for Monday and want to avoid fake interviews from now on. Thanks once again! ~Marilyn

    1. August 17, 2011 at 10:30 pm

      Hi Marilyn,
      If a department has an opening it will usually be on the job/career portion of the company’s website. If you go ahead and ask they will either refer you to the website or give you a fake interview. I would go ahead with the phone interviews you have on Monday as this is always great practice for you but again, if these are informational interviews than don’t expect an offer. Most hospital jobs are unionized and that makes it harder to get in. Think about applying to a more junior job so you get your foot in the door and then apply for the job you want as an internal candidate. This is just my experience working in a hospital setting. Good Luck!

  76. ria
    August 18, 2011 at 6:10 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    Thanks for your advice – it has certainly boosted my confidence. Will now call up the recruiter to follow up on my email.

    You are doing such a fantastic self-less service. May god bless you with every success in your own life…


  77. Veronica
    August 18, 2011 at 9:59 pm

    I had a phone interview with a company and I felt that it went fairly well. After months of waiting I finally heard back. The hiring manager said that they would be “pursuing other candidates at this time” but she encouraged me to apply for additional jobs at the company. I was polite and thanked her for calling (because a lot of times you NEVER even hear back from companies to begin with). What I really wanted to do was ask her “Why?” Why didn’t I get considered for an in-person interview? Why did she feel I was not qualified enough? etc. Is there a polite and professional way that I can ask these questions in the event that other hiring managers call to tell me I did not get a job? Or is this something I should avoid altogether?

    1. August 18, 2011 at 11:26 pm

      Hi Veronica,
      You’re right that you never hear back from companies after a phone interview. My rule is to only get back to individuals that I have invited to an interview in person. They are the ones who took time off from there busy schedule to come in and talk with me. Unfortunately, phone interviews are used more to weed people out rather than in. The key to passing the phone interview because it is usually with the recruiter, is to tell them what they want to hear. Make yourself look sound like the perfect candidate meaning prove to them that you have all the requirements that they are looking for and that you are ready to start with a little bit of notice even if that’s not entirely true. Your main objective is to pass the phone interview and get invited to the real interview with the hiring manager. You can go ahead and ask why you weren’t short listed for an in-person interview but I can almost promise you that they will just say that they found other candidates that fit the requirements a little more. Phone interviews are tough but like anything else you need to be well prepared and confident. Try to think over your answers and if they don’t 100% prove that your the candidate they need to meet with then that’s the problem. Practice, Practice, Practice. Good Luck.

  78. Varalakshmi J
    August 19, 2011 at 7:11 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    Thanks for all the insights. I have been through “fake interviews” myself without even realizing they were fake. Here’s my situation.. please advice.

    I have 6 years of experience, working in reputed international call centers and have excellent communication skills. 3 months back, i quit my job as a Team Leader for a MNC call center where I as working for 8 months. I had no choice but to resign because of severe health issues. I have now recovered from my health condition and am trying hard for a similar job.

    In every interview that I attend, I’m able to get through until I meet the Senior Operations Manager or VP. Everything goes great. But no one gets back to me with an offer. I’m confident about how I present myself and the interviewers show real interest in hiring me. But i just cant understand why none of the 6 companies where i was interviewed want to hire me. Are they suspecting that my health will pose bigger problems again or they just thinking that I’m faking an excuse for quitting my last job?

    I’ve lost all sleep over this. Please advice.

    1. August 19, 2011 at 12:54 pm

      Hi Varalakshmi,
      To be completely honest with you, companies are very hesitant to hire someone who has already quit a job due to health issues. This is a red flag for a recruiter. It makes us immediately think that you will get sick again and use up all of your sick benefits, which is expensive for a company because not only do they have to cover your sick time but they will probably have to hire another person to take over your job while you’re away on sick leave. I don’t think they think you’re faking an excuse for quitting your last job because again it’s not a great excuse in the eyes of an employer. I would suggest you try not to bring up the fact that you got ill and had to quit your job. I’m not asking you to lie but I am asking you not to tell the whole truth. Just say that you decided to leave because you weren’t challenged or something. I’m sorry that you were ill and I’m happy that you’re feeling better but it’s not something a recruiter and hiring manager want to hear.

  79. Sam
    August 19, 2011 at 11:26 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I’m a recent college graduate with a degree in Psychology and Communication Studies. All the jobs that I’ve had during my college career were temporary and in sales (retail- to be more specific). Now that I’m graduated, I obviously want some real experience in the the working world (not a mall-job).

    I apply to several different jobs a day, I particularly hear back from jobs that are sales-based. However, my career goal is to get into HR and become a recruiter in the long run. What are some helpful tips/ advice you could give me?

    I have a phone interview for a Recruiting Assistant position. i REALLY want this job, as this may be a great stepping stone towards my career path. I was wondering if you could give me some tips on how to ace the phone interview for this position – as I do not have any HR/ recruiting experience.

    Thanks so much!

    1. August 20, 2011 at 7:30 am

      Hi Sam,
      Trying to get a job with no experience in the field is hard. Since it’s a beginner/junior level job you might have a better chance of getting it but you are going to have to really think about why you want to get into recruiting. If your “career goal” is to get into HR and then recruiting I would go back to college and take some courses so it actually looks like you are serious about this goal. It’s hard to take someone seriously when they have no experience and no academic experience and recruiters would rather hire HR grads. Your job will be to win the recruiter over with the fact that you are looking for an entry level job in recruiting so you can see if this is in fact something you want to do. Good luck.

  80. Markus Revus
    August 21, 2011 at 8:13 am

    Hi Dors,

    I got a call inviting me for an interview here in Riyadh, a global legal firm for the position of PA. During the interview I was so very confident and I do believed I answer them (panel interview) very great. But after 3 days, I talked to the Office Manager whom always calling me and I ask her what will be the next move since they tell me that they need the new guy ASAP. She said please wait till the next today because they are still conducting interview. Then they will call me. (Please answer me)

    1. August 22, 2011 at 12:33 pm

      Hi Markus,
      I would be patient Markus. It’s great news that they need someone ASAP. That means they should make a decision very quickly. If you don’t hear from them today I would follow up. Good Luck!!

  81. Christina
    August 22, 2011 at 2:27 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I am really glad I found this website. I had an interview two weeks ago that went really well. I first interviewed with the supervisor and she complimented me ofter on my attire and work experiences. She said that I would probably have to come back for a second interview becasue the director was not in. On my way to my car she called me and ask to come back in because the director came back in time from meetings. When I met the director he said she couldnt stop talking about me and was raving about me. The interview went so well with the director, he said that if that if the other candidates were anything like me they will need to open positions. At the end of the interview they said it should take two weeks because they have other interviews as well. I sent a thank you note to both interviewers and followed up with a phone call and was told by the director that they are “wrapping things up and will make a final decision on Monday”. Well today is Monday and its almost the end of the day and I havent heard anything. Does this mean I didnt get the job even though they said all those wonderful things about me : (

    1. August 22, 2011 at 2:48 pm

      Hi Christina,
      From your recollection the interview sounded pretty freakn amazing. So my suggestion is to not worry and be patient. You never know if they had an interview today (Monday) and then they will make a decision. Since you were told that they would be making a decision on Monday I would contact them tomorrow morning for a follow-up. Make sure you sound excited and interested in the role (obviously). The tone of your voice is very important. Make sure you don’t sound desperate but that you are interested in there decision as you really enjoyed meeting the two interviewers. Make sure if for some reason you are not the successful candidate that they provide you a good reason as you received more than positive feedback on the day of your interview. My fingers are crossed for you! Good Luck.

  82. Jayda
    August 22, 2011 at 11:16 pm

    Hi Dorothy,
    Your article is amazing. Very well written. I had an interview last Thursday for accounts receivable. The finance officer who interviewed me said she was impressed with the fact that I worked my way from the bottom to the position I’m in now at my age (I’m in my mid 20’s) and needed someone with dedication and ambition. We had the interview for over an hour and along with my skills, she talked to me about the procedures in the office, and the fact that she needs help, since none of the 15 people in her department have enough experience in accounts receivable to do do the job well. She told me she would call me so she and the administrator can have a second interview. I was optimistic at first, however, another person told me since she talked 90% of the time (with 70% being how unskilled the staff is, how much work needs to be done, and how she needs trained employees to help, all the OT they want) her being 30 minutes late for our interview (she told me she was in a meeting with her staff about the horrendous AR and the mediocre quality of work in registration) and the fact that it’s Monday and she hasn’t called, that there was no intention on hiring me and there was an attempt for me to be dissuade from the job. Does it seem like that to you? Should I call the manager or would that seem desparate? Was this a fake interview?

    1. August 22, 2011 at 11:34 pm

      Hi Jayda,
      Thanks for the comment and I’m glad you liked the article 🙂 For your situation, I don’t like that she spoke about the other employees in a negative way. That’s just not professional. Saying that, she sounds like she needs some help fast so I don’t necessarily think this was a fake interview. After an interview I would always send a thank you email. I would definitely follow-up with them and they didn’t give you a timeline so when you speak with them try to get them to commit to an actual date on when they expect this new hire to start. It really sounds like you had a great connection with her so definitely call her and remind her that you are still interested in the job. Good Luck.

  83. Christina
    August 23, 2011 at 12:20 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    It’s Christina, I emailed you yesterday regarding that wonderful interview that I had. I still did not recieve a call back and last time I spoke to the director (last Thursday) he said that they were wrapping things up and will make a decision by Monday and I would hear back either way. I took your advice and called back this morning and tried to contact the supervisor but I got no response and did not leave a message. I left her a message last week and thats when I decided to call the Director and spoke to him. Do you think I should call the Director again or just wait for them to call me like they said they would? or maybe try the Supervisor or HR? Also, I am trying to think what could have changed their mine about me…I left my pervious job after I went on Maternity leave and decided to take the year off. During the interview I said I left for personal family matters. Someone told me its not good to say you left after maternity leave..is that true? Also, by law does my last employment have to keep my maternity leave confidental if a potential employer contacts them?

    1. August 23, 2011 at 1:47 pm

      Hey Christina,
      Just because you called them and left a message last week doesn’t mean you can’t leave them another message. You need to show them that you are interested in the role and leaving a message if they don’t answer is the way to do it. You need to be firm but polite and say that you recall being told that the decision to hire would be finalized on Monday and you were just hoping someone could call you back for an update. I’m glad you said you left for personal reasons because saying that you quit while on maternity leave is awful (for a company that is). It is definitely not good to say you left after maternity leave. If your employer was asked why you left the company they may say that you decided not to come back from maternity leave but it depends on what was written on your ROE. It also depends on what you said on your resignation letter.

  84. Elle C.
    August 23, 2011 at 9:33 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I hope you are doing well. I posted on this site a few months ago- and since then, I have been on vacation and going through grueling rounds of interviews with major companies. Sadly, as of last week, I got rejected from ALL but one of them.

    That one company, ABC, is the same company that kept jerking me around the last time. I went to the first interview, and I really clicked with the manager (she seemed to really liked me). She told me on the spot that she’s moving me to the final round. So a week later, Tuesday August 10, I had a very casual interview with 2 of her subordinates. It was only half an hour, and they seemed like they just wanted to have a casual conversation with me. They have expressed many times that they think my profile fits the role. Now, it’s been a week and I have not heard back from them. The hiring manager told me that she needed someone “ASAP” when I first met with her. Today, I called the HR recruiter, the girl who I have been in contact with (I don’t have the Hiring Manager’s business card) says that the Hiring Manager did not get back to her yet. But she will let me know either way (good or bad).

    Do you think they are just dangling me along? If they really liked me, wouldn’t have offered me the job already? I still do not understand. Why didn’t she just say “no, you didn’t get the job” and let me move on with my life?

    I feel like I’m at someone’s mercy. I don’t know if I can continue applying and prepping for interviews anymore. I really want this job.

    On that note, I have been very depressed lately- and what a nice coincidence that I came across ur new article about depression. Thank YOU dearly for writing that. It certainly help me put things into perspective- but a big part of me is still longing for that job because, well frankly, I need it.

    1. August 23, 2011 at 9:56 pm

      Hi Elle C.
      I know you REALLY want this job but sometimes when they say that the hiring manager is still deciding or hasn’t even gotten back to HR then maybe that’s true. I know it’s hard to stay positive but please STAY POSITIVE 🙂 I’m really glad to hear that you are getting a lot of interviews. Have you really looked at yourself and how you interview? I only suggest it because one of many reasons you may not be getting job offers is the way you answer the interview questions or the way you come across in an interview. It’s always good to really be honest with yourself and try to improve. Have you thought about getting a survival job? Something just to help pay the bills while you look for something more permanent? I’m glad you liked my recent post and hope you use some of the suggestions such as networking and meeting people that can possibly help you get the job you want. When you’re feeling really down go out for a job, a bike ride or swim. Sweat out all those bad thoughts and don’t let them linger and make you bitter. I am POSITIVE you will find something soon if you stay confident. Thanks for the update Elle 🙂

  85. Elle C.
    August 23, 2011 at 9:35 pm

    *Sorry, not tuesday august 10. My last and final interview with the company was August 16.

  86. Devin M.
    August 24, 2011 at 9:49 am

    Hello Dorothy,

    I love your site, it is extremely helpful!

    I had an interview three weeks ago, like everyone else, it went well. The hiring manaer says everything went well and they are still in the decision making process. I immediately sent a follow up thank you email 6 hours after the interview. I followed up a week late, he says still have not selected a candidate. Then two days ago, I sent an email stating that i was still interested in the job and was wanting to see if it had been filled. He responded by saying that the position was still not filled, but should be by the end of the week. He asked me to follow up with him on Thursday and I told him i would call him at 2pm, he said he was looking forward to it.

    Your thoughts please.

    1. August 24, 2011 at 4:10 pm

      Hi Devin,
      I’m afraid that you may not be the successful candidate. I say this because it looks like a few weeks have passed and they still have not selected a candidate and then stated, after your follow up email, that it is still not filled but they should be making a decision at the end of the week. I think they are moving forward with another candidate. Also, following up does not mean just calling HR and asking them if they filled the position. Following up means yes, seeing if they made a decision but if they say no then you need to remind them why you are the perfect candidate or help them recall how pleasant the interview/meeting was. You need to be more active and less passive. Don’t be afraid to show initiative. It’s people who show initiative and drive that get hired not the ones who just ask if they position is filled i.e. you probably didn’t pick me and I wanted to make sure. Sorry and I hope that this is not the case.

  87. Christina
    August 24, 2011 at 4:47 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Thanks for the tip. I did leave another message and i will follow up again by the end of the week if i don’t hear anything. Also, for future interviews, how should i go about my last place of employment, leaving after maternity leave. I will continue to say I left for personal family matters however when they call for reference, is it out of my hands at that point right? Will this have a negative impact on my job searches and can this delay the process even more?

    1. August 24, 2011 at 5:12 pm

      Hey Christina,
      I’m glad to hear that you left a message. In regards to your reason for leaving your last job, I would continue to say that you left for personal reasons. It really depends on what your references say but I’m sure your record states that you quit/resigned. Leaving after taking maternity leave does not look good for you as other companies , if they find out, will be worried that you will do the same thing while working for them. In any case, HR is not that worried about it as it’s not something they can prevent or see coming so I wouldn’t worry too much about it. Just make sure you ask your references to state, if they were asked, that you left the company due to personal matters.

  88. Elle C.
    August 24, 2011 at 9:00 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Thank you for your response. You’re very sweet. I have been told by all interviewers that I have a great attitude and lovely personality. Only thing- there’s always someone with better skills/experience than me.

    I only have 3 years work experience and an MBA from a top school in Canada. Sadly, it has not gotten me anywhere.

    Also, can you share your insight- how do you know I have not be rejected already? What makes you so sure that the HR is genuinely waiting to hear back from Hiring Manager? I’ve heard stories that if you don’t get the offer within a few days, it means “forget it”. I also heard that sometimes it’s a ploy- they don’t want to say yes to you until they can secure their first pick.

    1. August 25, 2011 at 6:45 am

      Hey Elle C.
      I don’t know for sure that you have or have not been rejected already. I’m trying to be positive. As a recruiter I have to wait to hear from hiring managers all the time so that is a legitimate excuse but you’re right and I have said this in various posts that if you don’t hear from the recruiter in a few days of the interview (depending on what timeline they gave you) than they probably didn’t chose you. When a recruiter gives you excuses or dangles a carrot in front of you then they are usually trying to secure their first pick. Since you have only 3 years of work experience (not sure if that experience is even in the field that you want to be in) your goal even with a MBA is to find an entry level position. Many new grads start in a company at the bottom and work themselves up. Make sure you are applying to jobs that you actually have a good chance of getting. Don’t pin yourself against other candidates that have way more experience then you.

  89. Christina
    August 25, 2011 at 11:26 am

    Hey Dorothy,

    I still havent heard anything. I tried calling the Director, Supervisor and HR and no answer, just their voicemails. I guess at this point if I do not hear back today, then I should just move on. I read the post above and if I dont hear back within a couple of days of the day they told me they were make their decision (Monday) then most likely they selected another candidate. What s strange to me is that I looked at the job posting on their website to see if it was removed, it was still up but they slighty changed the job title. Does that mean anything? Thanks again

  90. Christina
    August 25, 2011 at 11:35 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    Also, I put my last supervisor as my reference. I havent spoke to hear in a year but she was my boss. Do you think it’s a good idea to contact her by email or phone, and ask her if it is ok for her to say I left for peronal reasons? Im not sure who else i can use for a reference since she was my supervisor. I was a good employee, its just that when i had my baby, after my maternity leave, i couldnt afford daycare on the salary i had. I had to stay home with my son. I just dont want this to be the downfall for me finding a job now.

    1. August 25, 2011 at 11:45 am

      Hey Christina,
      It depends on what kind of a relationship you have with your reference but I think contacting by phone and explaining your concerns is the clearest way to do it.

  91. Tammie
    August 25, 2011 at 2:01 pm

    Thank you for the article it made me feel much better after being rejected for a position I was certain I had in the bag.
    The hiring process was extremelly long including three phone interviews, flying to another state (on their dime) for four more interviews at corporate and then two more interviews at the actual facility closer to home. Everything went wonderfully until I meet with the last individual. The questions she asked I felt were deeply personal and not at all related to the job at hand. Overall I probably had spent 8-10 hours interviewing over a two week period only to be told I was “too perfect.” What in the world does that mean? The HR recruitor who I had interviewed couldn’t (or wouldn’t eloborate) yet appeared as flabbergasted as I felt. Your feedback would be appreciated:)

    1. August 25, 2011 at 2:04 pm

      Hey Tammie,
      When i think of a “too perfect” candidate I think of someone who was not genuine in an interview but answered all the questions perfectly. This is someone who has interviewed so many times and memorized all the best answers to all the common interview questions but came off sounding phony. The personality of the candidate did not come across and they were worried about their answers more than learning about the job and seeing if they are a fit for the role. That’s the only thing I can think of. The recruiter unfortunately was lazy and didn’t want to give you proper feedback, which seems to me more common and sad. I don’t think this was a fake interview since you had to endure nine interviews. Sorry about your experience but thank you for sharing it.

  92. Christina
    August 25, 2011 at 2:06 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I have an update. I finally got through to HR and they said that the Supervisor and Director are still doing interviews and they have two more people to see and should be done by next Wednesday. HR said I am still in the running and that they now have two open spots. They will start making calls by next week. What do you think. I can’t understand why the Supervisor and the Director did’nt just call me back with an update. Thanks for your reponses they have been helpful. It feels good to have someone to talk to during these frustrating times.

    1. August 25, 2011 at 2:25 pm

      Hey Christina,
      See this is why following up and keeping engaged with the recruiter is important 🙂 You found out that you are still in the running, which is great! I do think if you were one of the successful candidates they would have contacted you to tell you that they were taking a little longer in the interview process rather than you only finding out when you contacted them. Hopefully I’m wrong. Supervisors, Directors and who ever else is in your interview don’t usually have the time to contact every candidate that follows up. They just attended the interview and still have a full-time job to do. The recruiter is the one who should get back to you because that is their full-time job. I think you left enough messages for them to know that you are interested in the role. I would suggest only if you have the Director and Supervisor’s email to email them and explain again making sure you are very clear that you have all the qualifications (and hopefully more) that they are looking for in a candidate. You don’t want them to forget about you or just remember that you were the one who called and left a few messages asking about an update. Sell yourself and make sure they know that you are perfect for the role. Good Luck!

  93. Sam
    August 26, 2011 at 5:27 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I’m a little bit taken aback. I just got back from a 2nd interview with a company. I met with 3 people. The third person who interviewed me asked me about my family life, what my father/mother’s occupation is, when I came to America, where I’m from, etc.

    I’ve NEVER experienced those questions in an interview. What is your feedback on it? I was feeling very overwhelmed that such personal questions were being asked.


    1. August 26, 2011 at 5:54 pm

      Hi Sam,
      I can see why you would be taken back or overwhelmed with these questions if they were asked in your first interview. Since they were asked in a second interview the person probably already looked over their notes from everyone else who’s spoken with you and didn’t really have anymore questions to ask. So why not get to know you a bit better and ask a few personal questions. Try to never feel flustered. Who ever is interviewing you is also seeing if they can be your friend. Remember they are picturing in their minds if they can sit and work beside you for 8 hours of the day. Asking a few personal questions is just another way to get to know you. Usually these questions are ice breakers and help candidates calm down as well. Remember to send a thank you email and follow up.

  94. Jayda
    August 27, 2011 at 10:19 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    UPDATE: The day after I wrote you, the finance manager called me to come in the next day for a second interview. I had an interview with each department manager and the general manager. The

  95. Jayda
    August 27, 2011 at 10:42 am

    sorry hit publish before I finished. 🙂 The finance manager and I talked after the interview and she thanked me for the thank you letter (the general manager said I was the only one who sent a thank you letter) and apologized for the way she came across in the first interview. She was late and upset because she just had a meeting where she had to fire two people and had to restructure her department due to it. She hoped I understood that was not a regular attitude or occurence. She said she would call me by the end of the week. two hours later, I was offered the position. Your advice on the thank you letter was priceless and probably helped me get a job. Thank you.

    1. August 27, 2011 at 6:58 pm

      CONGRATULATIONS!!!! I’m very happy for you Jayda 🙂 People forget how important Thank you emails are. I wish you all the best with your new job and thank you so much for the fantastic update.

  96. Elle C.
    August 29, 2011 at 12:38 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    Just to follow up- I have contacted the recruiter again on Friday and she told me that the hiring manager still has issues she needs to work out on her end and that’s why the hiring manager did not reach a decision to inform the HR recruiter I spoke to.

    I’m getting really annoyed- why would they interview me if they are not sure about hiring. The only thing giving me hope is that they still have not told me “no”.

    1. August 29, 2011 at 1:08 pm

      Hi Elle C,
      This is really annoying. Did they give you a timeline on when all these “issues” will be straightened out? I don’t know why this company decided to post a job when they can’t move forward with actually hiring someone. Maybe business isn’t good. I would do some research and check if they are in trouble right now and maybe will be letting people go instead of hiring soon. If you really want this job keep following up and try to get a timeline from them so at least you can move forward and apply to other jobs. Maybe by the time they do offers you’ll already have an offer from another company and you’ll be in the best seat to negotiate 🙂

  97. Christina
    August 30, 2011 at 10:12 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    Its Christina, I was called in for a second interview. What do you think that means? Any suggestions? I didnt send an email to them.

  98. August 30, 2011 at 11:05 am

    Hi Christina,
    It means that they think you’re a good candidate. You mentioned that they changed the job posting slightly. Make sure you note the changes and make sure during the interview your answers show that you have all the qualifications they need. Do you know if your interview is with the same Director/supervisor/hiring manager etc? If so, make sure you’re really relaxed as second interviews should be less stressful as they are just making sure that you understand the role and they can relate to you as a colleague. If it’s with anyone new then it will probably be as formal as the first interview. In any case, don’t be nervous because the fact is THEY LIKE YOU! You might be the only one who was asked to come in for a second interview and they just wanted to meet with you one more time to make sure that you are genuine and that you really want this job before they send you an offer. Congratulations and this is GREAT news!!!

  99. Hannah
    August 31, 2011 at 4:59 pm

    Hi Dorothy, I had a really great interview and would love your opinion on something.
    HR mentioned at the end that a lot of people applied for the position, and they were doing interviews all week, so I wouldn’t hear back right away- though I was given a specific date.
    Is this comment typically a way of softening the blow/ preparing me for not getting the job since there are so many other candidates or harmless? Curious what you think.

    1. August 31, 2011 at 5:00 pm

      Hi Hannah,
      Telling a candidate that they were interviewing a lot of people is a common thing and for most of the time it’s true. Recruiters would say this to all the candidates even the one they think will get the job so they don’t let you think that it’s that easy to work there. Since they gave you a specific date I would wait for that date to pass and if you don’t hear anything then follow-up. Remember to send a Thank you note! Thanks for the comment 🙂

  100. Sam
    August 31, 2011 at 5:16 pm

    Hi Dorothy!

    First and foremost, I just wanted to let you know that I find this blog so incredibly useful. Especially being a recent college grad, I’m learning little tips here and there from reading all these posts + your responses.

    I thought it would be a great idea if I got some feedback from you in regards to my situation. As I had mentioned earlier in the previous posts, I had a phone interview for a position as a Human resources assistant (last Tuesday – Aug. 23rd). Since I’m the type to get nervous over the phone, I had prepared immensely prior to the phone interview. I did great and was asked to come in for a face-to-face interview, as well as turning in an Employment Application with a list of my references, social security #, etc.

    So last Thursday (Aug 25th), I went in for the interview. The lady (Cara) who I spoke to over the phone sent me a message after the phone interview to ask for her when I come in. Well, I went in- asked for her- however, the HR Coordinator came to receive me. He told me that the Cara had an unexpected meeting and that he would interview me instead. The interview with him went well, we spent about 45 minutes talking, asking one another questions, etc. And then he goes, “let me see if Cara is free now”. So he leaves for a few minutes, comes back, and says “Ah I’m going to have to keep you company for a little while, because Cara’s not free yet”. So we talked for about another 15 minutes about school, hobbies, etc. And then Cara comes in followed by her co-worker, who also happens to have a HR Manager title. We greeted one another, and Cara goes, “Elena is going to interview you now”. The interview with Elena went great as well. After that interview, Cara comes in the room and says, “It was really nice meeting you. Do keep in touch with me over the next week, we should have a decision made by the end of next week. Keep me updated on your schedule. You are the first person we interviewed, we still are screening other candidates and have scheduled interviews with them. But keep me updated!”

    I sent in a Thank-you note the day after my in-person interview. I also sent a follow-up email yesterday morning to let her know of my schedule and availability for this week.

    So, I have a couple of concerns here. 1) Cara mentioned that I was to meet with her in person for the interview, however she was unavailable to interview me. Does that already put me at a disadvantage because she was busy in a meeting and I didn’t get the opportunity to impress her in person? Because if she’s screening and interviewing other candidates, chances are that she’s going to be meeting with them in person?
    2) Since I was the first person that they interviewed in person, does that already put me at a disadvantage?
    3) I did not a receive a response to my thank-you email nor my follow-up email from yesterday. After how long do you reckon that I should get back in touch with them to see how far along they are in the interviewing process?

    A couple of side notes: the job qualifications states that the person who holds this position should have 1-2 years of recruiting experience. However, when I spoke to Cara over the phone, I let her that even though I may not have recruiting experience- I do have transferable skills that I have gained from my customer service background that may be applicable to a role in HR. (I think she liked that I said that, which is why I MAY have landed with an in-person interview, maybe?)

    I read in the previous posts that it is important to stay patient, however I am just very concerned and I’m being impatient because I know that I’m already at a disadvantage for not having met Cara in-person because an unexpected meeting had come up + I also know that there ARE other qualified candidates that they may be screening.

    Please let me know your feedback! Thank you so much.


    1. August 31, 2011 at 5:17 pm

      Hi Sam,
      Thank you for your comment and lets get to your concerns. 1. I personally do think that it does put you in a disadvantage that you did not interview with Cara. She probably will interview other candidates herself and not only will she remember them since she actually interviewed them but they might have the recruiting experience they are looking for. 2. Being the first person interviewed does not put in a disadvantage but it definitely makes you want to follow-up and be more ACTIVE since you don’t want them to forget about you. 3. DO NOT expect a response from your Thank you note or Follow-up email as you are thanking them for taking the time to meet with you and you are providing your schedule as per their request. They are not going to reply and thank you for your thank you and schedule. That’s just time consuming and silly. In regards to the next time you should touch base with them, I would give it 3-4 days and then call them and ask for a specific date when the interview process will be over and this is a great chance for you to ask them if they need anymore information from you. You mentioned that you provided them with a list of your references. Make sure you prepare your references and ask them to call you right away if they get contacted by this company. Being patient is key but being an ACTIVE candidate especially when you have a disadvantage (do not have the experience) is important too. Do you have the email of the HR Coordinator that interviewed you? It sounded like you spent a lot of time with him so I would suggest you reach out to him for an update. When you know you’re at a disadvantage think of other things that you feel you can bring to the table. What makes you unique?

  101. A Vang
    August 31, 2011 at 5:18 pm

    Hey Dorothy. I have applied to a small jewelry store and got an interview about a week later. I got interview by the manager and the recruiter. The funny thing is they didn’t know what to interview me about, they had nothing on their hands but a blank piece of paper and a pencil to jot down answer from me. They kept looking at each other asking what they should ask me and that its so hard because they don’t have their book of questions to ask. Which i find it really unprepared. Before the interview i showed up 20 minutes early and had to wait about half an hour in the store for the interview. I had a great chat with the recruiter which i didn’t know that she was going to interview me too. She seems to really like me. after the interview the manager told me shell contact me on Friday to follow me up, but its been almost two weeks and i have heard nothing. I felt that the interview went great and that they bot liked me. We joked and talk about personal thing at times too. I need your feed back on this, if it was a fake interview or that i was not the one they want to hire. thanks again.

    1. August 31, 2011 at 5:31 pm

      Hi A Vang,
      I have never heard of a recruiter being so unprepared. Yes a hiring manager but never a recruiter. Anyway, I think what you need to focus on is the fact that you may have befriended the recruiter. Do you have her contact info? If not try to search it out. The fact that two weeks have past is not a good sign either. This might have been a fake interview but I’m not sure why they wouldn’t even just fake it properly and be a little prepared. After the interview did you send a thank you email? Did you follow-up within the two weeks? If not, make sure you do that the next time and at least you can put this interview in the books as the worst interview you have ever attended 😉

  102. stan
    August 31, 2011 at 10:05 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I dont know if this is considered a fake interview but i feel like there are some red flags, can you tell me what you think?

    I recently applied for this part time position as a sales associate for a mortgage company and the receptionist called me that afternoon for a phone interview. I was on campus and dont think i did too well on the phone interview but I dont think i did exactly horrible as well. She scheduled me for a person interview the following day (today) with the president of the company. Right off the bat, he introduced himself and says he does all his interviews short and to the point. He did ask me questions relating to the job but the interview was a bit short. He also asked for my schedule but did not ask me for a list of references. Is it because this position is part time? This position is an entry-level positions for undergrad students or post-grad students. We did talk about our similarities on how we both attend(ed) SDSU and talked about how he loved the current restaurant im currently working at. How would I know exactly if it was a fake interview or for sure know if i didnt get the job? He said he had other interviews for the week and will let me know latest by Monday. I’m so nervous! Please give me your advice!

    1. September 1, 2011 at 10:13 am

      Hi Stan,
      I don’t think this was a fake interview. The president of the company was upfront and honest with you that he does all interview short and to the point. Some recruiters or people who have hired before have a good sense of people. For some interviewers it can only take a few minutes of a conversation and they know right away if that person can do the job or not. You are applying for an entry-level sales position so he probably was making sure that you sounded confident, looked good (dressed appropriately) and can have a conversation with. When a position is for an undergrad or post-grad student and it’s part-time the interview is definitely less formal. This doesn’t mean it’s less formal on your end. Make sure you send a Thank you email right away and send them a list of your references. Remember you are trying to sell yourself and they want to see if you can sell yourself and if you do then you’ll probably be a good sales associate. Be ACTIVE and definitely follow-up on Monday if you don’t hear from them by then. Good Luck!

  103. Christina
    September 1, 2011 at 4:48 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I had my second interview and in my opinion it didnt go as well as the first. For one, I thought this was going to be a follow up from the first interview but it turns out that I was being interviewed for a different position. The supervisor I interviewed with the first time briefly mentioned it to me the first time but I was not told by HR that I was intervieweing for a different position. The Supervisor that i met with the first time sat in on the interview but didnt say much. The supervisor for the new position did most of the talking. I feel as though i didnt do my best because I was thrown off but tried my best anyway. I feel as though she wasnt even prepared because it seems as though she was looking at my resume for the first time ( which i provided her with). It felt like she was trying to throw me off with some of her questions also..it just didnt feel right. She said that they are still interviewing and I should hear back in a couple of weeks. I called HR after the interview to find out if the position was filled for the first position i applied for and they said no it wasnt and she was sorry for not telling me i was interviewing for another position because i wasnt given the job description to prepare for and that she was not informed as well. She said she would get back to me, so i guess i will wait to hear from her. At this point, I feel like they are delaying the process and Im just given the run around. I feel dissapointed and confused but i guess it was not ment to be. I will stay positive and continue to look for a job.

  104. Christina
    September 1, 2011 at 5:34 pm

    Also, HR sounded like she wasnt to happy about the situation and she said that she likes to let her applicants know what they are interviewing for so they can prepare. She said that before I called her they were trying to call her but she was in the middle of doing something. She said she would let them know and will get back to me. That was over 2 hours ago and it is not past the work day. What do you think about the situation. Was this a fake interview after all? This whole process started Aug. 8 when i had my first interview now fast forward to september 1 my second interview for another position. Eventhough the positions are similar it still a different position. And now they said i should hear back in a couple of weeks

    1. September 1, 2011 at 6:05 pm

      Hi Christina,
      This interview sounded really messy. I’ve had a candidate come in for an interview and thought it was a different role even though I sent them the position description before hand. In any case, we pretty much wrote that person off because they weren’t prepared. In your case it wasn’t your fault because you were mislead to think this was a second interview not a new interview for a new role. Since they didn’t ask for your references or even look like they want to hire a person quickly (they said you would hear back from them in a couple of weeks) I would write them off and move on to other job interviews. It’s just not clear what they want and you don’t want to waist your time. I would also really, really think twice about going in again if they call and invite you for another interview. Sorry.

  105. stan
    September 2, 2011 at 1:17 am


    I GOT THE JOB!!!! thank you for your response! 🙂

    1. September 2, 2011 at 8:50 am

      CONGRATULATIONS STAN!!!! I wish you all the best 🙂

  106. Ally
    September 5, 2011 at 4:03 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    I was wondering if you could clear something up for me? I had a phone interview, then group interview then one-on-one interview (from 150 applications I was in the top 15). I felt I did really well, I was very communicative, friendly and remembered all the facts and details about the company, I even espouse all of their principles and was fully avaliable etc. However I got the call (when promised which was nice) saying that I was unsuccessful. The manager said I interviewed very well and was very friendly and that I should apply for another position they have at another location. I cannot figure out why I did not get the job? I am qualified and obviously interviewed well (as she stated emphatically). I am aware that this company is notorious for hiring internally and I am fairly certain that is what happened here (in fact it has happened to me before – they rescinded their job posting). My question is; how are you supposed to get in there?! I understand the positive points about hiring internally, less training, easier transition etc, but it is so unfair for us ‘outsiders’. I really need a job.
    Thankyou for any advice 🙂

    1. September 5, 2011 at 12:44 pm

      Hi Ally,
      Internal candidates and nepotism are two of the most common reason why you wouldn’t be the successful candidate. To get into a union environment or to even beat internal candidates to the job offer the key is to network. You need to know someone who is in the company or in HR who can recommend or vouch for you. LinkedIN, Twitter and Google plus are great ways to connect with a company. Good Luck and thanks for leaving a comment.

  107. Beverly
    September 6, 2011 at 3:07 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I thought I was definitely going to get the job I applied for because not too many people have experience in this particular branch of my field. I was called in for 2 interviews (done the same day) less than 24 hours after sending my resume. I was asked to come in for a 3rd interview hours after my set first interviews. I feel like all 3 went very well but, I haven’t heard a peep in almost 2 weeks.

    I sent thank you letters to all 3 interviewers and left 2 voicemail messages (1 week apart) for the HR rep since the initial interviews. Nobody has not responded to me AT ALL! So, today, I sent an email to the Hiring Manger directly asking the status of my application. Was this a bad move? I would rather hear no than nothing at all.

  108. Beverly
    September 6, 2011 at 3:57 pm

    Well, just found out after contacting the Hiring Manger directly that the position was given to an internal candidate and I was #2. Like that makes me feel better but, it’s better than no answer like i’ve been getting from the stupid HR guy. I sent a thank email for getting back to me. : /

    1. September 6, 2011 at 4:16 pm

      Hi Beverly,
      I’m glad you feel better after hearing from the hiring manager. If you were the #2 candidate I would have expected them to respond to you almost immediately. I can’t believe they took over two weeks to respond and they didn’t really get back to you because you called and contacted them. That is so rude. When you don’t hear from a hiring manager or HR for more than 2 weeks than of course its ok to email them to find out what’s going on. Usually that amount of time means that you didn’t get the job but you still deserve a call to be told that. I think HR and hiring managers are just forgetting about common etiquette. They should call, thank and let every candidate know the hiring decision because many people took time out of their busy day to come in and speak with them. Thanks for leaving the comment and sorry you didn’t get the job 🙁

  109. Hannah
    September 6, 2011 at 5:15 pm

    Hi Dorothy,
    Hoping for your insight since this is my dream position for a reputable company and I’m starting to wonder if they had a target hire all along.
    My interview was August 29th and was told they would have an answer Sept 12th. So the wait time is definitely making me over think everything.
    Overall it went really well, and I wouldn’t change anything 0n my end. Unfortunately there were some possible red flags. First, it was a panel interview of four and I thought it was strange no one took notes on my answers. The questions were fairly simple for this type of position.
    Also, the only two ladies on the panel would joke with me throughout (in a professional manner) which was fine, just strange. Lastly, it was short, lasted about 20 minutes but the man from HR mentioned at the end he always keeps them brief. One more note I thought was odd, I was the one to initiate the hello/goodbye and handshake.
    I felt like they were judging my personality more than anything.
    Besides that, I’m confident in my ability to give a great interview. I sent a thank you email the day after and will follow up later this week if I don’t hear back. Does it sound odd to you as well or am I just over thinking it all?

  110. Hannah
    September 8, 2011 at 1:35 pm

    Hi Dorothy, Thanks for your previous comment. I didn’t get the job, so its ok just wish I knew if there was a target all along.
    Keep on with this great site. Its obvious you’re doing something you love and helping people in the process. There’s nothing much better than that.

    1. September 8, 2011 at 2:41 pm

      Hi Hannah,
      Your interview did sound odd. Sorry that you didn’t get the job but it was obviously a fake interview so it had nothing to do with you. I hope you continue to be confident in your ability to give a great interview because it’s that confidence that will win you your next interview. Good Luck and thanks for the kind words 🙂

  111. Daisy
    September 12, 2011 at 10:09 pm

    Hi Dorothy,
    I need advice on my interview this past Friday. It went really well. I got past the screeners (HR and Office Mngr). I’m not sure who the third person was, as far as his position in the company. But he complimented me on my resume and said he felt I would be the perfect fit for the position. But he said he still had to follow through interviews until Tuesday. He even said that out of hundreds of resumes mine stood out and that he liked what I had to say and how I presented myself. Do you think the chances of me getting the job are good or bad?

    1. September 13, 2011 at 4:00 pm

      Hi Daisy,
      I think since they loved your resume and said that they liked what you had to say and how you presented yourself you have a very good chance of getting the job. Remember to send a thank you note and follow-up if you need to. Did they ask for references?

  112. Daisy
    September 13, 2011 at 8:35 pm

    Thanks Dorothy for a quick response.No references, but now they are sending me on a second interview for tomorrow at their corporate office. I am nervous because they did mention it was down between myself and another girl. I really hope I’m the girl they choose. Any words of advice for the second interview?

    1. September 14, 2011 at 10:48 am

      Hey Daisy,
      Stay positive!!! Be friendly and enthusiastic about the role but still be professional. Think about 3 or 4 major skills that you will be bringing to the role. What makes you unique? Just reinforce that you are the perfect candidates by looking over the job description and remembering some of the questions from the first interview. If you exude confidence you will do great!!! Good Luck and try not to be nervous 🙂

  113. Chloe
    September 14, 2011 at 11:45 am

    Hi Dorothy

    First of all, thanks so much for writing this excellent blog. It’s very useful.

    I went for a job with a large international firm on Friday. Prior to the interview my recruitment agent submitted my CV and was asked to arrange an interview on the same day.

    It’s a fantastic opportunity and the interviewer is at the absolute top of her field.

    I was slightly nervous in the interview but while we didn’t discuss anything personal or build a strong personal connection I thought the answers I gave were fine. The q+a session was relatively short and we discussed the role the rest of the time.

    At the end of the interview she told me she was interviewing other candidates and would get back to me by the end of this week. She replied to my thank you email on the same day stating she promise to come back soon and she looks forward to keeping in touch.

    My agent gave her a call today and was told that the interviewer enjoyed speaking to me, and that there has been a delay in the iinterview process. My agent asked me if there was anything else I wanted to apply for. I have received no feedback either before or after the interview on what the interviewer thought of me.

    Maybe it’s just jobseeker nerves but I am wondering if the interviewer is just trying to leave me dangling while she hunts for a better candidate. Is my agent trying to let me down gently?

    1. September 14, 2011 at 12:33 pm

      Hi Chloe,
      How is your relationship with your recruitment agent? I ask because he/she would be able to give you the real story if this is a legitimate delay in the process or if they are indeed looking for another/better candidate. I don’t mind that your agent wanted to know if you wanted to apply for anything else because clearly from the feedback you interview well. If I was your agent I would be pushing the company to move forward with hiring or at least tell me if you were one of the top candidates and they are seriously considering hiring you once they get over this delay. Either way I would also be sending you out to other job openings because at the end of the day you might end up getting two job offers, which is great for you 🙂 When working with an agent make sure you start off the relationship by stating that you want them to be completely honest with you. Not to sugar coat feedback from interviewers and just to be straight forward. Hope that helps and thanks for leaving a comment.

  114. fawad
    September 15, 2011 at 4:30 am


    I been to many interviews last 45 days. I went through 30 interviews. Out of 30, I would say i did well in 5 of them and went till final round/stage. In UK most of the companies have 3 stages of interview (IT profession). Telephone, Test, Face to Face. I been to final stage in 3 companies. 2 Companies asked for references and they never comeback. When I contact them they say they are still finalizing candidates. It been 2/3 weeks now. I am not sure what is wrong. How do I make sure that my X employer is providing good reference. I resign my own for personal/professional reason from my last role.

    I am mentally upset and disturb. I am good what I do and still finding it difficult to get job.

    Any suggestion/advice welcome

    1. September 15, 2011 at 5:05 am

      Hi Fawad,
      As IT continues to evolve so does work of computer engineers, network analysts etc. IT is a very popular profession and one job posting can warrant hundreds of applicants. You obviously have a well written and impressive resume but have trouble with the face-to-face interview. Interviews for roles such as IT, Engineers, and Finance can be a little more tricky because the interview itself tends to be more technical a.k.a. dry. I’ve rarely witnessed an energetic IT candidate who not only knows his/her stuff but is personable and can have a relaxed conversation. I would suggest you do your research and try to find out if you have anything in common with the hiring manager or recruiter. Try to be personable and friendly. Don’t answer interview question with one word answers. In regards to your reference, a past employer is called to verify your employment and they would confirm that you resigned. That’s all. If you provided references such as past supervisors, managers etc. these references were chosen because they can speak positively about you and your work. You can always contact them to make sure that they can provide a good reference for you. When you are asked why you left your past job what do you say? Make sure that you make them believe that even though you decided to resign you had a positive experience and enjoyed working there. Don’t give up Fawad. Try to network more so you can be recommended/referred by an employee of the company. Stay positive and Good Luck!

  115. Chloe
    September 15, 2011 at 6:31 am

    Hi Dorothy, thanks for posting so quickly. I have another 2 interviews organized for next week! I wish i made more of a personal connection with the first interviewer since the first job is my dream job but the other interviews will make the wait more bearable. Hopefully one of these will result in an offer, and I can then turn around and ask the first company for a quick response. I will keep you posted.

    1. September 15, 2011 at 7:29 am

      That’s great news Chloe! Don’t give up on your dream job. Keep on your recruiter and I bet you will soon have to decided between multiple offers 🙂 Good luck on the interviews and I look forward to your update.

  116. Tony
    September 15, 2011 at 6:25 pm

    I will keep my question brief. So I went for a interview, nailed it in fact, and was called back for a second. Within 5 minutes of the second interview I was offered the job. I am to start next week, now they are asking for references, after the fact? Any reason why they would ask after the offer was made?

    1. September 15, 2011 at 6:41 pm

      Hi Tony,
      Congratulations!! They are simply asking for references to have something on file. They want to do their due diligence and handle each new hire the same meaning interview, offer and references. Why do you think they loved you so much? Did you do anything unique to be offered a job within 5 minutes of the interview?

  117. Tony
    September 16, 2011 at 9:24 am

    I went prepared, I researched the company, and knew everything about what they did, and was ready for the classic STAR interview. So I already knew what was coming.

    Plus it helped that I had 13 years experience in the same type of field.
    I made eye contact, and related all my answers to the job being applied for.

    The hiring manager basically was like, well… I really don’t have any other questions, you pretty much have proven your value here. He ended on the also classic why should I pick you over someone else.. My reply…. Longevity.

    So as advice for all those other ones out there be prepared for the STAR interviews as they call them, you know give me a Situation in which you were given a Task that was hard for you, what Action did you take, and at the end what was the Result.

    1. September 16, 2011 at 9:30 am

      Thanks Tony,
      Sounds like the key is to prepare well, make sure your answers relate to the job that you’re applying for and be confident. Thanks for also sharing your STAR interview process.

  118. John
    September 16, 2011 at 8:03 pm

    Hi Dorothy
    I had interview yesterday with hiring manager on phone. But hiring manager did not ask any questions, he just asked me “Do you have questions”. I asked few questions about the responsiblity of the candidate…..and about his team and work enovirnment in the company. hiring manager did not ask for any references. I do not know if I will get this job. Is this normal. this was my first interview for industry.

    1. September 16, 2011 at 8:17 pm

      Hi John,
      Is this your first contact with the company? Did you have a phone interview before speaking with hiring manager? This does sound a little strange. I would need more information but I don’t like that the hiring manager did not ask you any questions. Either the hiring manager is lazy, this was a fake interview or they don’t know what they are doing. I would contact HR and ask them if being asked zero questions is a common interview practice for them.

  119. Christina
    September 17, 2011 at 7:43 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    It’s Christina, and it’s been a couple weeks since we last spoke. I decided to move on since i did’nt hear back from the last interview I had. I applied to a job that has great potential but the salary is lower than what I would want. They called me for an interview and on the job posting, they had the base salary that they are offering. Is it ok to negotiate the salary? Will they offer more to the right person? or is that their final offer to anyone? thanks : )

    1. September 17, 2011 at 7:45 pm

      Hi Christina,
      Once you are offered the job it is ok to negotiate salary. Never bring it up during the interview. Since they put the base salary on the job posting I doubt that they will budge and offer more but for the right person I have seen companies either find more money or increase vacation entitlement. Good Luck!

  120. melissa
    September 17, 2011 at 7:55 pm

    I recently had an interview. They went as far as to call ALL of my references and background check and when I called. They said that they decided to go in a differnt direction. What does that mean?

    1. September 17, 2011 at 9:22 pm

      Hi Melissa,
      I have seen this before. In my past experience this means that they gave the job to an internal candidate. They probably shifted the department around, created some job sharing or something but either way they “decided to go in a different direction” and it has nothing to do with you. If I were you I would have asked them to elaborate a little more and explain exactly what that meant. You can always call them back and ask to get some feedback on your interview and see if you can get anything out of them. Maybe your references weren’t as good as you thought. Have you spoken to your references to see if they maybe had anything to do with it? Either way I am sorry to hear that. Thanks for leaving a comment and don’t be scared to ask a company to explain there decision. Just make sure you are polite and professional.

  121. John
    September 18, 2011 at 1:41 pm

    Hi Dorothy
    Thanks for your response. I got phone call from hiring manager’s supervisor first and than from hiring manager. Supervisor did ask me few questions about my work and experience and he told me that hiring manager is going to call you tomorrow. During the conversation hiring manager did explain me in detail what they are doing and what they expect from candidate. Please give me suggestions what to do?

    1. September 18, 2011 at 2:06 pm

      Hi John,
      Sounds like to me that this was a phone screen. They explained to you what they are looking for and their expectations. I hope you had some good questions for them and spoke about your experience and how it relates to the job on hand. Before agreeing to a phone interview always ask them if they can tell you what you should expect i.e. behaviour type questions, any tests etc. That way you would have know that the hiring manager expected you to do the talking and not him. How did the phone interview end? Did the hiring manager tell you what the next stage of the interview process was? Did you ask? I’m going to assume that you are qualified for the job so if I were you I would follow up. Email or phone the supervisor or hiring manager and be ready to sell yourself again to them, thank them for their time and ask them what the next stage of the interview process is. Good Luck!

  122. John
    September 18, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    Hi Dorothy
    Thanks for the response. Interview went well. At the end of interview hiring manager did not tell me about the next stage but he did tell me that they are calling more candidates and his supervisor, HR manager will proceed after that.
    I did send a thanks email to hiring manager after interview. My interview was on Sept 15, when do you think I should contact or follow up with them.

    1. September 18, 2011 at 2:43 pm

      Hi John,
      I would follow up on Wednesday.

  123. John
    September 18, 2011 at 3:40 pm

    Hi Dorothy,
    Sorry I asking too much. Do you think from my conversation with supervisor and hiring manager I have some chances . I bit confused. I know it is hard to predict.

    1. September 18, 2011 at 4:40 pm

      Hi John,
      It’s hard to tell. It looks like you made it past one pre-screen (hiring manager’s supervisor) and made it to another pre-screen (hiring manager. It’s great that you made it this far but the goal is to hear from the supervisor and HR Manager. I hope that the questions that you asked the hiring manager i.e. about he role, company work environment were well thought out enough that he thinks of you as a good candidate. I still suggest you need to follow up and when you do remember to emphasize some of you key strengths that you will bring to the role. Good Luck!

  124. Jason
    September 18, 2011 at 7:24 pm


    First off, great blog, and sound advice. Nice of you to take time out of your day to respond to everyone’s questions and concerns.

    On that note, here is my situation:

    I was recently contacted by a recruiter via email, and then set up an appt. to do a phone interview/screen (Friday afternoon). We spoke on the phone, and it went pretty well. She was pretty impressed with my quals and background, and an in person interview was set up with the hiring manager on the following Monday.

    I went in for the interview, and all was going very well. Then the hiring manager said to me, “I just want to say pretty candidly, that you are probably overqualified for the job”. He went on to ask me if it was something I was interested in, and I reassured him that it was, stating that it had a lot of things that I had been/enjoyed doing in addition to the opportunity to learn new skills, and improve upon other skillsets, etc. He also mentioned that “if this didn’t work out, that he would hand pass my resume to other dept heads within the company”. This left me a little puzzled, as the interview was going very well. Later in the interview, he said that he did have two more candidates to interview, and he would make a decision that Friday. I also asked him if he had any more questions for me, and he stated no, he was very impressed with my background and it definitely tied to what they were looking for.

    After the interview with him, I went and spoke with the recruiter a bit. She went over the benefits, and asked me again was it something I was interested in. I told her absolutely, she said she was glad to hear it and that after we did the phone screen the previous week that she was very impressed and that she wanted to get me in with the company. She asked me how I left it with the hiring manager, and I had mentioned that he said he would make a decision on Friday. She walked me to the elevators, and she told me I’d definitely hear from her.

    That night, sent Thank you letters via snail mail. That Friday, I didn’t hear back, and I sent a follow up email asking if a decision had been made. To that email, I haven’t heard back. This was actually this past week, so I’m assuming there is always Monday/Tuesday to hear back.

    I could be jumping the gun, but I wanted to see what you thought (esp about the “overqualified” statement, the “will pass your resume” statement, and so on. 🙂 I tried to reassure them I was interested, but I’m not sure…

    — Jason

    1. September 19, 2011 at 10:00 am

      Hi Jason,
      I’m glad you followed-up and I’m sure you’ll hear from them today or tomorrow. Re: the overqualified statement, as a recruiter I love to get a resume and meet a person that has all the qualifications for the job. Unfortunately, being overqualified for some roles is not a positive thing. A hiring manager and recruiter both want to hire someone that finds the job challenging and will learn something and develop professionally from the experience. If you hire someone that is overqualified then they are usually not challenged, will not really learn anything new, get bored and look for another more challenging job and the company and HR are back to square one and have to recruit all over again (costly). If the other candidates that they interview turn out to be awful then you might have a chance for the job but they may also just re-post the job. If they really loved you they may change the jobs responsibilities to make it a little more challenging for you but that would only happen if they really LOVED you. I think when a hiring manager says “I will pass your resume on” he/she really means it but the fact is if they aren’t currently hiring for a role that you would be good for you will just have to wait until they do, which can be months/years. Did they ask for your references? If they didn’t then my gut feeling is that you will not get the job. I’m sure the recruiter was really excited to find your resume but if they find another person who see’s this job as a challenge and who will grow with the company they will probably go with them. Sorry and I hope I’m wrong.

  125. John
    September 19, 2011 at 2:02 pm

    Thanks! Dorothy. I will follow up and will update you accordingly.

  126. John
    September 19, 2011 at 4:33 pm

    Hi Dorothy!
    To update you, I recieved a call from HR manager, asking me to come for next round of interview at their company site. HR manager told me that I will have one to one talk with more than 5 members of the team. Any suggestions!

  127. Jason
    September 19, 2011 at 7:23 pm

    Dorothy, Thanks for the response. I agree as well, from other sites I have read and also your response, I’m getting a pretty consistent idea of what to expect. It’s a shame though, because I was really interested in the job and would have stuck around as it seems to be a great company. When I was speaking with the hiring manager, he kept talking about if they did hire me and if I became bored, that they would try to find something else and allow me to move up and around within the company. I did take that as a flag, as he seemed to be more concerned about speaking of the future with the company than the present position (even though I brought it pack to the position in question multiple times).

    By the way, they did respond to my email, the recruiter did say a decision would “probably” be made today, and that she would get back to me once it was (although I didn’t hear anything by COB). So I’m not holding by breath. 🙂 Maybe tomorrow.

    That poses another question, if there is the slightest hint of being “overqualified”, should one tone down their resume and not speak of their accomplishments in the interview?


  128. Jason
    September 19, 2011 at 7:55 pm

    Dorothy – I forgot to mention, they asked for my references in the pre-screen, and I entered them onto their website.

    1. September 19, 2011 at 8:53 pm

      Hi Jason,
      If you want a job that you know you are overqualified for but for whatever reason you want to work for the company and perhaps work your way to another role I would then definitely tone down the resume and not mention too may accomplishments during the interview. The goal is always to portray yourself as the best candidate who is in interested in the role because it’s a great opportunity for your career and/or it is a challenge for you.

  129. AS
    September 20, 2011 at 11:07 am

    Good article but I do not agree with points 3 and 4. I have had three successful interviews in the past year and a half and neither of the three fits with your description.

    Job 1 – I had an interview in which the HR Manager told me that a decision will be made by next week. I heard from them a month after that they would proceed with my reference check; two more weeks later I got the job offer.

    Job 2 – I was contacted by a recruiter and had a first one on one interview with him before I proceeded to meeting with the hiring company. I was not asked for references at all and received a job offer a week after the interview.

    Job 3 – Similar to the scenario described in Job 1, after 2 rounds of interview, I was informed by HR that a decision will be made within 2 weeks. 2 weeks later I was called back for an unexpected third round of interview. References were asked a few days after the third interview. I was just informed that they are in the process of putting together an offer for me.

    1. September 20, 2011 at 12:16 pm

      Hi AS,
      Thank you for your comment and keep in mind that there are always exceptions to the rules and that the points I raised were for situations where people did not get the job even after a great interview. In all three cases you pointed out you in fact got the jobs. In response you your cases, I believe that for Job 1 you were not the company’s first choice. Getting an offer a month after they said they would make a decision is a clear indication that the first choice candidate fell threw. Job 2, Not all companies ask for references. It all depends on the job you are applying to. Job 3, sounds like the company was not 100% sure about who to hire. They probably were deciding between two very good candidates, one being yourself. After inviting you both back for an unexpected interview they decided to go with you, which is GREAT! You provided a great example on how people need to be patient and that each company and interview process you go through can be very different. Thanks.

  130. KT
    September 20, 2011 at 1:42 pm

    How long does it take HR to make an offer for a government job? I’ve heard it takes a while (3-6 months). The hiring manager told me that I did really well in my interview and on my assessment test and that she was sending my files to HR. It has been 6 weeks since my first interview. Should I have heard something by now? I’m a little worried because during my first interview the hiring manager asked me if she could contact my current employer and I said yes. My employer at the time just aburptly shut down his business (about 3 weeks ago) and hired a new manager. If she calls the people there are not going to know me. Should I call HR and let them know?

    1. September 20, 2011 at 3:12 pm

      Hi KT,
      I honestly think that there isn’t a set in stone time when the interview process is over for any job not even a government job. Some companies want the recruitment process to be finished in 2-3 weeks but there are so many things that can shorten or lengthen the process. In your case, I would follow up right away especially since you allowed them to contact your current employer and there has been a change in management. I would call HR right away and tell them that you would like to submit a change/update to your references. If you find out that they are still recruiting for the role (6 weeks seems like a very long time and they may have hired someone) then I would ask them for a timeline on when to expect a decision. Remember to be polite and professional at all times. Good Luck!

  131. Nic D
    September 20, 2011 at 4:51 pm

    Hello there, i really enjoyed your article!!

    I had a job interview on Monday for a lecturing position – it was a panel interview with five people. I felt that the interview went really well as they seemed genuinely interested in all my responses and even laughed at a light hearted thing i said. The head of department asked me what my availability was like and asked if i would be in a position to start soon. At the end of the 50min interview the Head of dept shook my hand firmly and said he would be in touch very soon. They interviewed for two days; Monday and today. My question to you is when do you think i should hear back…if they interviews finished, say at 3.pm today, surely by 5 they would know who the successful candidate would be – should they have phoned me if i was successful or would i hear back via HR?
    look forward to hearing from you.


    1. September 20, 2011 at 5:12 pm

      Hi Nic,
      You may hear back from HR but it really depends on who contacted you and invited/setup the interview. Did one of the five people on the panel tell you that they will be making a decision by Tuesday? When interviews are scheduled for two days or two weeks the interview panel usually likes to think about all the candidates and that may take an extra day or two. Unless it was a unanimous decision and one candidate was the obvious best candidate. Make sure that you send a thank you letter, be patient and if you don’t hear from them by tomorrow (Thursday) I would call and follow up. Remember to be professional and polite and ask them if they had anymore questions for you to clarify or a take this follow up opportunity and ask them a question about the role. Be an ACTIVE jobs seeker Nic and remember to be confident because it sounds like you had a great interview. Making the panel laugh is never a bad thing 😉 Good Luck!

  132. Amber
    September 20, 2011 at 5:21 pm

    Hello Dorothy,

    I think it’s really sweet of you to answer all of our questions. (Good to know there are people who still enjoy being nice to others.)

    I had a rather “unique” interviewing experience with a company I really wanted to work for:

    I submitted my materials (resume and cover letter) after seeing the job posting. After about 2 weeks, I called the company to check the status. A few days later an HR Manager contacted me and asked when I’d be available for an interview. I interviewed with her that week, was complimented on my answers and moved on to Phase 2: an interview with the CEO. My interview with the CEO went so well. I was then moved on to the hiring exercise.

    I worked hard on this hiring exercise and even had a friend who works in the field look over it, he said it was flawless. I turned it in and didn’t hear anything when promised. When they finally got back to me, I wasn’t selected (no surprise there—since we went so long without contact).

    I emailed the CEO and HR manager thanking them for their time and asking if they had any interview advice for me in the future. I STILL got nothing.

    About a week later, I saw the job was reposted.

    To make matters worse, the HR Manager requested a connection from me on Linked In. I know she had to search for me because I have a really generic name and we have no people in common (I checked).

    Why do you think a company would have someone do so much and not hire them? And then look them up on a social/professional network?

    1. September 20, 2011 at 6:10 pm

      Hi Amber,
      Ok, this is what I think might have happened. I think the company hired someone internally (or they hired someone but it fell through) but you turned out to be a VERY good candidate. So I think they went to finance and got everything approved to hire another person. They re-posted the job and now the HR manager wants to connect with you on LinkedIn to see if you started another job. I personally think you should never decline a connection on LinkedIn if it’s from a recruiter or HR manager. You never know when that connection might be handy. I would accept the connection and then email or Inmail (through LinkedIn) them letting them know that you noticed that the job was re-posted and that you would be interested in the role if you are in fact still interested in the role. In any case, If you are interested in a job or company and you see that they re-posted the job and on top of that they are trying to connect with you I would give them the benefit of the doubt and investigate further. This might be the opportunity that you are looking for the job that you want. It also might be nothing but like I always say stay positive!!! Good Luck Amber 🙂

  133. Jake
    September 21, 2011 at 5:58 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    It’s nice to see someone actually taking the time to get back to people. I’d like to share my interview experience with you and see what you think.

    I applied for an advertising position with a media company. The CEO of the company himself scheduled me for an interview, and we spent a total of two hours together. He even showed me around the office and let me meet some of the other staff. By the end of that first interview he told me that they don’t actually offer advertising services in their company but offered me a position in another department instead.

    I was shocked. Why call me in for an interview if I’m applying for a position that you don’t even have? I figured he must have been impressed with my CV and must have liked me when he met me. He then said that he’d like me to start as soon as possible and that he’d like me to meet the MD of the company since I’d be dealing with him on a regular basis (or at least more so than with him because he’s the CEO).

    Two weeks later, I come back in to meet the MD who told me that I really impressed the CEO. Again, it was another two hour interview. By the end of the interview he (the MD) had told me he’d send me the job proposal within the next few days and would give me a chance to look it over before responding to them. A few days pass and after incessantly checking my email inbox, I don’t see a job proposal. I email the MD and he says that he’s had to travel for an emergency and that he’d get back to me when he returns. Notice that he now says ‘get back to me’ instead of ‘send you the proposal’.

    He comes back and I’m scheduled for a third interview with both the CEO and the MD. It was another hour and a half before he (the MD) said “we’ll get back to you by the end of next week at the latest”. Now, I was confused. First I receive a job offer on the spot, and then I’m told I’d be sent the contracts, and now this?

    What do you think happened?

  134. Jake
    September 21, 2011 at 6:00 pm

    Oh and I forgot to mention it’s been over a month now and I haven’t received any news.

    1. September 21, 2011 at 6:23 pm

      Hi Jake,
      I think this media company has no idea what they are doing. I am not sure why they would even advertise that they had an advertising position available but they don’t offer any advertising services!? I’m just curious but what job did the MD offer you? Again, this is why HR/recruiter needs to be involved. I can’t believe they would waste your time like this. I can only think that these two guys maybe had an idea of where to put you but it wasn’t important enough or high on the priority list because they forgot about you. I personally would never want to work with this company and would send them an email (both the CEO and MD) and ask them why they wasted your time and not only invited you in for a role that never existed but say that they are going to send you a job proposal and never do it. Say that word of mouth is a powerful thing and you will plan on telling as many people as possible about this experience. Again, that’s personally what I would do. Sorry that you had to go through this. It just doesn’t make sense and I wouldn’t waste anymore of your time thinking about it. Move on and plan on working for a company that actually respects their employees.

  135. simon
    September 22, 2011 at 9:54 am


    I went for an interview 3 weeks ago and was told i would hear back during the next week. I received an email earlier this week (i.e. 2 weeks later) from them telling me that they were impressed with my credentials, but are not able to continue discussions at the moment because they are involved in a senior level appointment, and they would contact me asap.

    The next day they posted the exact same ad that i applied for again on the same job search website. Can you please advise what this means about my chances, and what their intentions are? (i haven’t heard back since the email)

    Thanks in advance

    1. September 22, 2011 at 10:35 am

      Hi Simon,
      The only thing I can think of is that this is there way of telling you that you are not right for the job. After they first posted the job they found through the interview process that they did not find any candidates that they felt matched their requirements. They paid you a compliment and left you thinking that they liked you. This is what they wanted you to feel. They want you to still be interested in their company and keep applying to their jobs in case they change their minds or requirements and decide to hire you. Recruiters like to always have an active pool of candidates to choose from and this is classic example of how recruiters keep you interested. If you’re really interested in the job I would call them and ask them to explain what being involved in a senior level appointment means and has to do with hiring you and why the job was re-posted. Good Luck!

  136. Ashley
    September 22, 2011 at 11:20 am

    Thanks for your amazing blog, it’s very helpful and you are very kind for all of these responses. I’ll keep my question brief…I had 4 interviews for a job that is perfect for me, they checked my references (the whole process took several weeks, when originally the hiring manager said he wanted to fill the position asap). I finally got the call from the recruiter saying they went with someone else who brought “more to the table.” No details. I was pretty shocked. Is it appropriate to e-mail my recruiter and ask why I wasn’t hired? In a professional manor of course. I just want to know what I don’t have that this other person did.

    Thank you!

    1. September 22, 2011 at 12:11 pm

      Hi Ashley,
      Thank you for the comment and I’m glad you think that the blog is helpful 🙂 In response to your comment, yes I think it is appropriate to call or email the recruiter and ask them to be a little more specific on why you weren’t chosen. If it’s asked in a professional manor than it should not be a problem. Tell them that you felt that you were perfect for the role and their feedback would probably you get closer to the career/job that you want.

  137. Christina
    September 22, 2011 at 12:39 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I recently had an interview and it went pretty well. I asked when I should expect to hear something back, or how soon they were looking to fill the position and the manager said she is not sure. What do you think that means?

    1. September 22, 2011 at 4:15 pm

      Hi Christina,
      I think that means that the manager hasn’t found the right candidate yet or they don’t know how the whole recruitment cycle works in their organization. Did you follow-up with a Thank you letter? If it’s been more than 2-3 working days since your interview I would follow-up and if you really want the job make sure you bring something to the table i.e. remind them of your unique skills, personality, the ability to read minds or something that will make you stand out 🙂

  138. Christina
    September 22, 2011 at 4:23 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I actually had the interview today. Do you think I should send a thank you card by mail and send it overnight or should I send a follow-up email? Also, should I do the same for the person in HR who did a brief phone interview with me and set up my actually interview? I am really trying to do everything I can to get a JOB : (….it’s so hard now of days.

    1. September 22, 2011 at 6:31 pm

      Hi Christina,
      You can send a thank you email and then a letter in the mail if you want. I would send one email that thanks and address everyone that you spoke to. Stay positive Christina I’m sure you’ll get an offer soon 🙂

  139. Jake
    September 22, 2011 at 7:09 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I actually approached them in the beginning. I sent in my CV/Cover letter describing how I’m looking for a position in advertising with them. Then the receptionist called me back saying that she had forwarded my information to the CEO and that he requested I come in to see him the following day which I did.

    So basically I was left under the impression that they were a media company who did offer advertising (I should have double-checked the website or at least specifically asked but still, why call me in for an interview?). I eventually found out at the end of our first 2 hour interview that they didn’t do advertising. However, the CEO expressed that he thought I was a really great candidate in general and that he’d like to offer me a job in their company but in the media buying department. Then he went on to say he’d like me to meet the company’s MD and you know the rest.

    It’s been around a month now since that third interview and I have yet to hear from them. I am quite ticked off and in all honesty I wasn’t really excited to work for them in the beginning since I wanted to get into advertising anyways. But still, I was seriously considering the offer and for all they knew I had turned down other offers in the two months they had me coming back and forth to see them.

    1. September 24, 2011 at 11:40 am

      Hi Jake,
      This changes everything. If you approached them then they don’t owe you anything. The CEO was nice enough to interview you because you showed interested in the company and you proved to be an ACTIVE job seeker and he was impressed. He explained to you that his company didn’t offer advertising services, which you should have known since you contact them but he still liked you and wanted you to meet the MD. The CEO could have ended there but decided not to. The MD then liked you and was probably trying to figure out a way to find you a position but that can be hard if they didn’t have a job posting. If they create a job they would probably want to post the job to make sure that you are the best person for the role even though they liked you. If I were you I would be extremely thankful that you have gotten this far. If there is the slightest chance that they might still offer you the job then you need to prove to them that you A) really want it and B) are qualified and have the skills to succeed. I would be professional and polite because remember they don’t owe you anything and they have taken time out of their busy day to meet with you. It’s you who needs to prove that you should be hired and a job should be created for you. Good Luck.

  140. Jake
    September 24, 2011 at 2:00 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    The thing is, yes, I approached them. But as it turns out, there was a job opening – just not in advertising (because they don’t do advertising). It was a job opening in media buying which the CEO offered me after our first interview. Then I was scheduled to meet the MD who also confirmed that yes I was offered this job in media buying and that he’d send me the contracts to look over. That never happened. Two weeks later I go to the third interview where they say sorry we’ll let you know in a week instead. And now over a month later nothing.

    So, yes while I did apply for one job that didn’t initially exist (advertising) I was offered another job which there was a vacancy for in their company (media buying). This was because the CEO who I met with first obviously liked me and seemed to be impressed with me. After the first two interviews it was crystal clear that the job was mine but all of a sudden, there’s a third interview and the MD tells me that actually, he’ll get back to me in a week.

    I’m sure in a case like this, I can’t be in the wrong. Even if I applied for advertising, they gave me a position elsewhere – not one that they tried to create for me but one that was already open and that they themselves were trying to fill (media buying). And this occurred over a period of two months.

    1. September 24, 2011 at 3:35 pm

      Hi Jake,
      If they had a job vacancy (media buying) they probably saw you as a potential candidate but compared you to other candidates, which applied to the actual job. At the end they probably got cold feet. They wanted to send you the job proposal but then probably thought that you were not the ideal candidate just like you thought that the role was not ideal for you. So when you look at the bigger picture it’s a win win situation. Yes they were a bit excited at first to say that they were going to send you the job proposal but you came out of know where (ACTIVE job hunter) and impressed them. Plus you would not have been happy with that role and they figured out that they had more qualified candidates that matched that specific job anyway. The point that you need to take away is that they liked you and you should keep that relationship open. You never know when another opportunity might come up or they may know of another opportunity at another company and hopefully refer you. Don’t be upset because if you were really honest with yourself that role was not ideal for you. Don’t through away the relationship with the CEO and MD because I bet that will come in handy one day. Al the best.

  141. Mel
    September 26, 2011 at 12:04 am

    Hi Dorothy,
    I am recent graduate at university and it is on-campus recruiting time. We as students apply to different companies throughou the school career center site . Afterwards you will either received e-mails with preselected, declined or alternate. I have gotten a couple of alternate invitations. I know I am good qualified for the positions but from reading alternate I am sure I am not the first pick. Do you think is possible to turn the table around to first choice?. Curiously I have around 8 interviews on one week. Two on site and six first round on campus interviews. Thank you beforhand.

    1. September 26, 2011 at 12:39 pm

      Hi Mel,
      I absolutely think it’s possible to make you their first choice. You need to stand out from other recent grads and one way of doing that is to really research the company, the person who is going to interview you and last but not least the role. All recent grads are pretty desperate to get a job so you need to really show or act like you are really really interested in that job. Sometimes especially when it comes down to recent grads the decision to hire someone has less to do with their experience and more to do with the candidates attitude and passion for the role and the company. Good Luck!

  142. Jon
    September 27, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    Hi, I just had a quick question. I recently had an interview at a manufacturing plant, met with the head supervisor, the president of the company, and the HR manager. The first part was with the supervisor, and I think it went ok, and answered all of her questions, then she handed me off to the president, same thing asked questions, and let me ask about the company, same with the hr manager. I was told that it would take between a week or two to hear back, going on the second week now I have tried contacting both the HR department and the supervisor who set up the interview and no word back, does this seem like they are just blowing me off now and should move on or is it best to wait a bit longer? Thanks.

    1. September 27, 2011 at 1:16 pm

      Hi Jon,
      It depends on how long ago you followed-up with HR and the supervisor. I would wait two business days and call HR again. Make sure that you’re not just asking the if the position is filled. Thank them for taking the time to see you and let them know that you are really interested in the role and working for the company. They may be blowing you off but until you know for sure I would be professional and polite but persistent. Good Luck!

  143. Scott
    September 27, 2011 at 1:45 pm

    Thanks for all the advice. I recently had a phone interview that I thought went pretty well. They let me know a few days later that I did not get the job. Is it okay to ask them for some pointers or things I didn’t do well on for future interviews? Thanks.

    1. September 27, 2011 at 3:01 pm

      Hi Scott,
      In my experience most phone interviews are phone screens, meaning they are most likely screening people out rather than in. Recruiters rarely give feedback to a candidate who was phone interviewed because A) they feel they don’t have to because they didn’t meet you face-to-face (i.e. took time out to dress up and come in for an interview), B) we rarely are asked and C) we don’t have time to provide feedback to every candidate we speak to. I would definitely give it a try so call them and say “I am definitely interested in being better prepared for the next opportunity, whether that comes up at your organization or elsewhere. Could you give me some feedback about why I was not selected?” I hope that works and good luck!

  144. Jake
    September 27, 2011 at 5:01 pm

    Hey Dorothy,

    I’ll definitely take your advice on that!

    On a completely different note, I’m applying to a job that is requesting applicants to fill out an application form as opposed to sending in a CV and cover letter. There is a part of the application where you describe briefly your work experience and another section where you include a supporting statement. Do you have any advice/tips on what to do in a situation like this? I know that those two sections in the application are basically like a CV and cover letter but now that I’m being asked to fill out an entire application form what can I do to make mine stand out?

    1. September 27, 2011 at 6:04 pm

      Hi Jake,
      When filling out an application you need to make sure that you are using the right keywords. Read the job description very carefully and make sure that you point out that you have a few of the requirements they are asking for. Another way for you to stand out is to send HR a quick email introducing yourself. Explain that you just applied for X job and that you are very interested and excited about the opportunity for an interview because you posses X skills and have X experience. Hope that helps 🙂

  145. Gail
    September 28, 2011 at 3:15 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    This post helped clear a lot of nagging questions most applicants have. Thanks!

    What I also want to know is, how soon do recruiters or hiring managers contact an applicant if they are interested in her/him after seeing the resume and cover letter? Is it immediate or do they wait to compile a short list of applicants before they contact each? I’m asking because I know a company has gone through my blog, which they could have only known about if they read my application letter. But I haven’t heard from them. It’s just been 2 days though.

    Thank you for sharing with us what you know.

    1. September 28, 2011 at 6:15 am

      Hi Gail,
      It really depends. Some recruiters will wait until the job posting is closed on their website before making a short list of candidates. There also may be more than one person looking through the candidate list and no one will be contacted until all the short lists get short listed again and make it to the final cut. It really depends but if you know that they have checked your blog why not be an ACTIVE job seeker and follow-up by calling them to make sure that they received your application/resume/CV. Before you call them do some research on the company, recruiter/hiring manager etc. At this time try to either speak with the recruiter or hiring manager and be friendly and professional and let them know that you are really interested in the role and tell them why you think your the right candidate. Good Luck!

  146. shine
    September 28, 2011 at 11:50 am

    Hi Dorothy

    I have got a verbal offer from company HR after interview.Also I signed salary negotiations letter.One week after I sent follow up letter,but I didn’t get any reply for that mail.Three weeks after I have got one call from recruiting consultancy.They said to me they holding my hiring.Also another candidate interviewed with me for another department.He got call letter.I totally anxious what will be happened next?
    what do you think Dorothy?

    1. September 28, 2011 at 11:58 am

      Hi Shine,
      I’m a bit confused. If you got a verbal offer than what do you mean when you signed a salary negotiation letter? Did you also ask them why they are holding off on the hiring process? I would recommend you speak with the recruitment agency and ask them for an update and to tell you what you should expect during this process. Don’t be left in the dark and ask questions that you deserve answers too. Hope that helps 😉

  147. Jim
    September 28, 2011 at 12:10 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Excellent Blog! Very informative with great tips.

    I applied for a Graphic Design position at a company, where the HR Director was my Manager at a different company. The HR Director suggested to the Recruiter to look for me.

    I was extended a telephone interview with the recruiter. I thought the telephone interview went well, and was asked to forward on samples of my work so the recruiter could pass them onto the hiring Marketing Manager along with my resume.

    The position I was applying for was a perfect fit, and I strongly believed I was qualified for the job.

    I didn’t hear back for a few days, so I decided to email the recruiter a follow up letter along with a link to my personal web site showcasing some of the work I do in my spare time.

    After I sent that email, I immediately I received an email from the recruiter with the following message:

    It was a pleasure speaking with you recently regarding the job opportunity at Home Properties. We have identified a candidate whose qualifications more closely match our job requirements.

    We appreciate your interest in our company and the time and effort invested in applying. We wish you luck in your career search.

    Dorothy, what happened? What did I do to be not selected?

    Thank you,

    1. September 28, 2011 at 12:15 pm

      Hi Jim,
      I don’t think you really did anything not to be selected. Here are the two possible scenarios that I think might have occurred. 1. I don’t know what kind of relationship you had with your ex-Manager but I’ve seen this happen before. Managers/friends want to show you that they are trying to help you get another job when in fact they are doing very little and maybe don’t really want to work with you again. Yes the recruiter called you but you only got a telephone interview. I’m glad you followed up because you found out that you didn’t get the job. I get asked from Managers, Directors and CEO’s to do them a favour and phone screen/interview a candidate/friend a lot. They don’t want to hire them because if they did then they would make sure that person was interviewed and hired right away. On the other hand, 2. The HR Director did their best to try to get you hired but the hiring manager had someone else in mind (another friend or past co-worker) and in my world the hiring manager has the final say. Again, depending on your relationship with the current HR Director/your ex-Manager I would simply contact them and ask them what happened. Sorry to hear that you didn’t get the job but make sure you Thank the recruiter because you never know if another opportunity comes up; you don’t want to burn any bridges. Thanks for leaving a comment and glad you find the blog informative. All the best!

  148. shine
    September 28, 2011 at 12:19 pm

    Hi Dorothy

    I already discussed with the recruiting consultancy.But they said to me your hiring is holding please to be wait for some more days.One candidate is interviewed with me for another department he got call letter and visa process is going on.I also tried to contact company HR staff, but she said to me.If any feed back they will contact with consultancy, from consultancy you will get answer.What is meant by holding,their is any hope.

    your suggestion please

    1. September 28, 2011 at 12:25 pm

      Hi Shine,
      Yes I think there is hope. If the company told you that you have to contact the agency and the agency told you that there is a hold for some reason then you will just have to be patient. Next time I would have asked to the agency to be more specific but right now if I were you I would just wait a few more days, three at the most. You don’t want to be an annoying candidate so that’s why I suggest you wait but definitely follow-up with the agency as it would be in there best interest that the company hires you through them. My fingers are crossed 😉

  149. George
    September 28, 2011 at 9:08 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Great blog – very helpful and informative!

    Quick question. When would you say ‘stop’ when it comes to applying for jobs. I’ve applied to so many different places and gone on several interviews and I’m just tired. Naturally I want a job, but do you think there’s a limit to how many applications you can make? Is it better after seriously applying for an extended period of time, to just wait a little bit before continuing to apply again?

    Also, two of my worst interview questions are “why did you apply for this job?” and “what can you bring to this role?” How would you answer those questions?


    1. September 28, 2011 at 10:41 pm

      Hi George,
      It depends on your situation. If you have a part-time job and can afford to stop looking for a full-time job for a few months then sure why not take a break to reevaluate things. If you’re unemployed and really need a job ASAP then I would consider a survival job so you can again take a few months to reevaluate your situation but still pay the bulls.. Remember it can take an average of 7 months to find a job. It’s not easy and you need to really work on your interview skills, resume, cover letter and networking skills to help land you your next job. Each interview you go to you should come out learning something new about yourself and how you can do better. I don’t think there is a limit of how many applications you can make but I do think that you shouldn’t limit yourself to just popular job boards like Workopolis or Career Builder. Why not try a recruitment agency.

      In regards to how to answer the two interview questions, you first need to ask yourself “why did you apply for this job?” Did the company interest you? Is it a change of industry? Is it a role you’ve always been interested in? etc. After you find out why you are interested in the job finding out what you bring to table shouldn’t be that hard. Look at the job description and requirements and see if you have what it takes to do that job. Can you offer more experience? Can you offer a second or third language? Can you offer clients? Can you offer other skills that can be seen as an asset? Can you offer a degree/diploma/certificate? etc. I truly believe that it all starts with confidence. If you believe that you are good at what you do then you can see why other companies would want to hire you. On the other hand, once you evaluated your interview skills, your current experience and education maybe you decide to take a few refresher courses, get re-trained or go back to school. Either way I think self and professional development is important. Hope that helps and glad you like the blog.

  150. Geo
    September 29, 2011 at 10:30 am

    Hi dorothy,

    Weeks ago, I have been called for the first interview. The interview lasts around 45 mins and went quite okay. Regarding the date of availabilty, he says it will be difficult. After the interview about 1 week time, I received an email from this managing director of the company that the recruitment will be hold back due to the change of plan and certain immediate projects to be fulfilled. Also states that my application would be their priority for consideration. They will assess the situation again and it is a pleasure getting to know me. I am quite confused whether I want to wait or find other job at the same time. Days ago I also found that they are still posting the same job but the application deadline doesn’t change. I need some advice on this. Thanks

    1. September 29, 2011 at 10:50 am

      Hi Geo,
      Sounds to me that they didn’t find the right candidate. They liked you but they obviously had an issue with your availability. It makes sense then to let you know that the job is on hold, classic recruitment strategy i.e. dangling the carrot but also keep the job posting open in case they get an application from a better candidate. They are obviously not in a rush to hire this role but I would not wait for them to offer you the role, which is exactly what they want you to do. Definitely continue to look for another job and you never know maybe when they finally decided that you are the best candidate and offer you the job that you have been going to other interviews and have other offers on the table. The best scenario for you 🙂 Good Luck!

  151. Jane
    September 29, 2011 at 2:53 pm

    Hi Dorothy,
    I’m really anxious for my hubby. He interviewed for a position abt 3 weeks ago, and is being asked to return for lunch with the VP. Now they are calling it a final interview plus lunch. What does this say about his chances. Do you think it’s a fake interview? They haven’t said anything about re-imbursing him for his trip either. When is a good time to bring it up? Plus he recently turned down a job with reputable company. the recruiter was pretty bitter and said he shd not apply to any other posns in that company cos he left them hanging at the last minute. how much power does this recruiter really have?

    1. September 29, 2011 at 3:36 pm

      Hi Jane,
      I don’t think this is a fake interview. I think the company is having a hard time deciding between two great candidates; one being your hubby. A final interview over lunch is very common. Make sure you hubby is still very prepared for some serious questions even though it will be less formal. The VP probably just wants to get to know your hubby a little more and see if he feels that there is a connection i.e. possible good working relationship. In regards to your reimbursement question, how far are we talking about traveling to these interviews? Is he taking a plane? It really depends on how the interviews were scheduled. In regards to the job your hubby turned down, a candidate can be “blacklisted” at a company. A recruiter alone normally can’t approve this but a recruiter and hiring manager can. It depends on how your hubby handled his decline of the job offer. It’s never a good idea to leave a company hanging at the last minute so if he pissed off a few people, most importantly pissed off important people then if he applies again to that company a message will be attached to his application possibly stating “Do Not Hire” with an explanation included. I have seen this happen before. Tell him to try to be extremely relaxed on this lunch and try to find out what he has in common with the VP i.e. Golf, same age kids, favorite sport team etc. Good Luck!

  152. John
    September 29, 2011 at 5:34 pm

    Hi Dorothy

    I have contacted you earlier for the suggestions about the job interview. I want to update you about the progress. Recenlty after phone screening I recieved a call from company for on site interview. According to me it went well. I had one to one discussion with 7 members of the team for 30 min each. They asked me about my experience. At same I have them few questions I had about their products in the market. After the interview I asked when I should expect to hear from them. They told me that they are interviewing other candidates. They will make the decision by the end of this week or early next week.
    Do you think is it right to ask in interview about their products? I did ask each member, when they join company, how they feel about working for company and so on. Do you think these are good questions to ask. I bit worried. I think blew it….

    1. September 29, 2011 at 7:47 pm

      Hi John,
      I would recommend you sign up to get my blog via email as it includes great questions that you should ask a recruiter/hiring manager. Do I think it’s ok to ask about the companies product in an interview? That depends. Did you ask what they sell? or how there product works? If you did then my answer is no. Before going to your interview you should have done some research about the company including what they sell or there products. If you are talking about the product in depth meaning showing them that you have knowledge about the product and your questions were related to the what you already know about it then my answer is yes. Showing that you are interested in the product and have knowledge about it i.e. manufacturing, selling etc. is a great thing. Remember to follow up with the company and send a thank you letter.

  153. George
    September 29, 2011 at 8:25 pm

    Hey Dorothy,

    Thanks for the advice. I have another question though. I recently fell ill and had to spend a few months in recovery. So I’ve had a gap in my resume since December. In a job interview, I’ve been asked about this gap and I usually answer honestly – explaining I had to battle a particular illness but have now made a full recovery (basically implying that the illness is gone and won’t hinder my performance). Is that the right way to go? Or is there a better way to spin off an illness?

    Thanks! 🙂

    1. September 29, 2011 at 8:37 pm

      Hi George,
      I am glad to hear that you made a full recovery but unfortunately a gap in your resume due to illness is a red flag for a recruiter or hiring manager. Even though your illness is gone the fact that you mention it will make a recruiter and hiring manager think that you will become sick again and possibly sooner than later, which will hinder your performance, attendance, increase your sick time and benefit use etc. I need to know more about your gap. Did you leave your last employer because you were sick? Were you fired? I would not answer this question honestly in your case but depending on how long a few months really is I would just say that you have just been unemployed and looking for a job during that time. Possibly took a vacation after you left your last job and enjoyed some time off before searching for a job again. These are all better answers then you recovering from an illness. Hope that helps.

  154. Hannah
    September 29, 2011 at 8:45 pm

    Hi Dorothy-

    I hope you are well. It has been an exhausting time for me going on so many interviews and feeling rejected, time has been wasted, etc.

    I have two questions, I’m not sure who else I could ask for a straight answer- 1) I was offered a position of office assistant, which semi-interested me. Unfortunately, I would have to sign an agreement that if I were to quit within a year, I would pay a penalty of a few hundred dollars. After the year is up, I would sign another agreement that if I were to quit at any time from that point on, I would be required to pay a larger but similar fine. Is this legal, or common? (I live in Canada) I passed on the job because it seems fishy to me, and feel discouraged.

    Lastly, 2) I went in for an interview for a jewelery store where I would create their flyers, advertisements digitally. I have graphic design experience.
    I feel this was a fake interview as well.
    Well, the owner interviewed me and said I would be better suited for actually selling the merchandise (based on attitude, but mostly I think my appearance). They didn’t even have an opening, but he said he would create a position 24 hours a week because he could see me as a great fit. Well, despite no experience in that field, it ended with him verbally offering me a position, though I never heard back again.

    I don’t understand the point of this, to talk to me for so long about an unrelated, non-existent position. Do you think it was fake or just politeness?

    1. September 29, 2011 at 9:27 pm

      Hi Hannah,
      Looking for a job is hard work and exhausting but you can’t give up so stay positive and remember you have great skills and experiences that many companies would consider an asset. Re: your first question, I am not an employment lawyer and don’t know what your specific job offer looked like but I have seen this type of agreement before. It’s not common but I can see why it can become very popular. When a candidate is found and hired through an agency the agency gets paid a fee. This fee is usually only paid after the candidate works for the employer for 90 days (probationary period). If the candidate chooses to quit before the 90 days the agency does not receive the fee. It puts pressure on agencies to provide better candidates. Some companies are now putting pressure on the employee so if they sign a contract for 12 months and quit before the contract expires then they pay a fee/penalty (usually the same amount for the agency as it will normally cover the recruitment process again). If you feel that a job offer seems fishy you can always get legal advice from HRSDC. Re: your second question, small business’ like a jewellery store don’t normally have a huge number of people on staff. If the owner met you and felt that you would be more suited for a front line role (yes probably due to your appearance, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing) then I think that’s great if you want to be a sales person rather than creating signage. It all depends on what you want to do but I don’t think it was a fake interview. I think the owner has the flexibility to create whatever job he wants if he thinks it will increase his business. Keep in mind you have the upper hand in that situation since he really liked you so you can probably get a better salary even though you have limited experience 😉 Stay positive and good luck!

  155. Jeff
    September 30, 2011 at 1:09 am

    Hey Dorothy,

    I met with a two recruiters at an info session today at my college. Everything went well I thought and they seemed very interested in me and my qualifications. Unfortunately, as I was leaving I heard the recruiter say to another candidate “make sure you schedule an interview with so and so before you leave”. I have no idea why I wasn’t asked for an interview and I am guessing that this candidate asked for an interview. So, my question is should you ask a recruiter for an interview (I feel like this makes for an awkward situation) or do you not push the issue and wait for them to ask? P.S. This company will be at the Career Fair later this week so there is still hope yet. They told me to talk to them there and should I ask them to go a step further?

    1. September 30, 2011 at 1:32 am

      Hi Jeff,
      I think the best thing you could do in that situation is to show confidence. When you’re talking to a recruiter make sure you did some research and can talk about the role and company. If you see that you are impressing the recruiter I would definitely ask them if they think it would be a good idea to set up an interview with you. So my advise is yes ask them for a chance to interview but show them that you are not waiting there time by learning about their company and the role you think you would excel in. Good Luck!

  156. Nic
    September 30, 2011 at 3:23 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    I read through most of these comments and have learned a lot about interview processes. Maybe you can help me figure out what I should feel about an interview i’m having. Last weds, I had an interview to be a technician at a local school district. I had my interview with the supervisor and head of the department. Everything went well, they liked my qualifications, amount of experiance and the whole. At the end the each gave me their business cards and wrote their personal cell numbers on them so I could reach them at anytime. Fast forward to this past monday, The head of the department called me and asked if I could come the next day for a second interview. He had a few questions about some stuff I said last time, former job I wanted to possibly keep, but after telling him I was ready to go full time into this new position and that the other job would only be during off times,( it is a school district so summer and winter are less hours), he was very happy to hear it and started to then tell me all the new projects that I would be involved in, schools I would work out of and of course, different benefits and salary perks. He said it takes about 2-3 weeks for administration to get everything together once he makes his decision and he would make it by that evening.

    So today He actually calls my cell and asks me to call him as soon as possible, then preceeds to call me at my normal job right now and talks to me over the phone. He explained to me that they fill both spots with candidates that had more certifications than me and one had about 10 more years experiance, but that he wants me on their team. He went as far as to say, Dont go interview at other places and take a break from trying to find another job, I will get you on my team because I really like you a lot and think you will make a great addition. He said he already went to the admin and has requested one more slot for a tech and if they say no he will get another department head to hire me then transfer me over. He said it could take a week or so but really wants me in.

    The question I have is that, Is it normal for a manager to tell you that you don’t have a job but to quit looking because we will make one for you? Any how long should I give him to try? He said he will get everything taken care of, but I have been told this many times over the years and it’s hard to trust employers sometimes anymore.


    1. September 30, 2011 at 7:43 am

      Hi Nic,
      I’m sorry to hear that you weren’t offered any of the original jobs but if the other candidates had more certifications and experience then there was nothing you could do differently. Now, In my own experience I have worked with hiring managers who created roles for candidates and even split finances with other departments just to get the candidate hired. So I know this is possible. My only concern is even if they created a new role, what would happen if they had to post it? Meaning, what if other more qualified candidates who had more certifications applied? Would they get hired over you? If the school already didn’t hire you because you had little experience and not enough certifications then what makes you think that this manager’s request will be approved? I personally would never stop looking for other opportunities until you get a written job offer. If he said that the paperwork would take a week or so to get sorted than I would wait one week and follow-up. If you feel that it’s not moving fast enough or at all then you can move on. It is very normal for a manager to tell you to stop looking for another job because they truly want you on their team and they don’t want you to start another possibly better job. It comes down to can they get things approved and give you an offer in a week or so? Why not call the manager and tell him what your concerns are? I hope this job does get created for you and glad you learning a lot from the website. Good Luck!

  157. Chloe
    September 30, 2011 at 6:20 pm

    Hi Dorothy

    Just wanted to let you know that I got one of the other 2 jobs that I interviewed for. I had my references checked and I was told that the final sign off was done on Friday. Hopefully I will receive the formal contract next week. I have not discussed salary with them directly but my agent said it should be about an 8% jump on my current salary.

    This job is my second choice. I didn’t get my first choice as they changed the JD and decided to go with a more experienced candidate. I did email the hiring manager at this place afterwards. She said she would be happy to keep in touch and revisit this when I have more experience.

  158. Chloe
    September 30, 2011 at 6:31 pm

    One more question: I only had 2 years in my last role. How do i explain moving on so quickly to future prospective employers? I started looking for a new job because my manager was poached. even though I loved working for him, I had reservations about joining him at his new company because it is a startup. My new job is at a place that has an established rep and is well resourced.

    Thanks very much Dorothy for setting up this blog and replying so promptly to everyone’s questions.

    1. September 30, 2011 at 7:51 pm

      CONGRATULATIONS Chloe!!!! That’s great news 🙂 I also love the fact that you contacted the hiring manager of the job you really wanted and will keep in touch. Smart move! Just make sure that you do keep in touch. In regards to your question about leaving a job after 2 years. Just explain that you were looking for a challenge and this new role offered that. I don’t think I understand exactly why you left your other job. Not sure why your manager leaving had any effect on your decision to quit but I’m sure it’s a little more complicated then that. Either way I am SO happy for you Chloe and wish you all the best in your new role.

  159. Jay
    October 1, 2011 at 2:07 am

    Thanks for this article. I never knew these fake interviews actually existed. I was originally scheduled in to have a face to face with a VP which then got cancelled the night before and switched to a phone interview.The company seemed to be in disarray and very disorganized. THey rescheduled me to a phone interview with an account exec. I didnt feel the interview went great but they notified me a few days later that they wanted to continue the process. I was scheduled a week later for another phone interview with a VP which i thought went extremely well. Great questions all around, really trying to prove their own worth to me as a company i’d like to stay with for the long haul. i was told the next step would be to finally get me in for a face to face with the VP’s director. 2 days later i was shocked to see a generic rejection email. i left that interview excited to finally have a chance to shake someones hand and have them see me. im pretty stunned right now. would it be odd for me to thank the HR for her prompt response in letting me know and asking her for feedback? was i a fake interview for someone whose mom had a direct connection?

    1. October 1, 2011 at 4:01 pm

      Hi Jay,
      I agree with you, this company seems very disorganized. I think responding to their email by thanking them for the opportunity to phone interview is very appropriate and of course you can ask for feedback especially since things sounded like they were going well. Keep in mind because they seem disorganized I can see them not providing you with any feedback or even replying to your email but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try. Needless to say I think their recruitment strategy and process needs a little polishing. Thanks for leaving a comment and Good Luck!

  160. Chloe
    October 1, 2011 at 6:22 pm


    To answer your question, the area I am in is quite specialized, so unless the co made a lateral hire, clients will not come once my current boss has left simply because there isn’t the talent there.

    Thanks Dorothy!

  161. Chloe
    October 2, 2011 at 11:05 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    This is probably an incredibly stupid question – but how accurate are salary surveys put out by recruiting agencies? I looked up two of them and apparently, with this job offer, I sit just above the max quoted for my level of experience. It’s definitely very flattering! But it does put enormous pressure on me to perform, especially in this economy. I am really happy that they think so much of me, but at the same time I hope they don’t fire me six months down the track for being too expensive!

    1. October 2, 2011 at 11:41 am

      Hey Chloe,
      I would think like any online salary calculators such as salary.com, payscale.com, glassdoor.com etc. That it probably takes approx. 6 months for the salary information that is gathered to accurately reflect in the reports it generates. A lot can change in 6 months so make sure you do some more research. I wouldn’t worry or put extra pressure on yourself or your performance. Different companies have different salary structures. Remember you will receive some training so learn as much as you can, as questions and do your best.

  162. Melanie
    October 3, 2011 at 3:26 pm

    So I had a third interview with a company on Friday. The two previous interviews were very informal with the man who would be my direct supervisor. This third interview was also with the VP of the company as well as an outside party I would be working with a great deal. So.. it went well I think. They were very impressed with my resume and experience. Seemed to like my work samples that had been provided earlier. They talked about working together and who would do what. I felt really positive leaving.. but now I still havent heard anything and I really want this job.. I should let you know.. my first interview was 6 weeks ago and my second was last Monday and then the final interview was Friday. I said I could start in 2 weeks and they thought that was great and said they wanted someone in the position ASAP. I am still staying positive .. im just impatient!

    1. October 3, 2011 at 3:53 pm

      Hi Melanie,
      Did they ask for your references? Did you ask the VP when you should anticipate to hear from them? When you’re attending two or three interviews that means they have short listed to probably two or three candidates. I think you should feel positive and yes be patient 😉 Don’t forget to send a thank you note to every person you interviewed with. I hope you have been sending thank you notes as your first interview was 6 weeks ago. Make sure that you emphasize on the note that you are really interested in this position and to point out some experience that impressed them. You are trying to stand out from the other candidate so remember to stay professional and polite but also sounding confident. Good Luck and my fingers are crossed for you 🙂

  163. Amber
    October 3, 2011 at 11:09 pm

    Hey Dorothy,

    An update:

    I took your advice and reached out to the HR Manager on LinkedIn. I explained that I wanted feedback from my interview because I believe it can help me get a position in the future. I explained that my intention is not to change her mind, but simply feedback.

    She responded and was very friendly. She said she didn’t know what I knew, but the CEO never hired anyone. She decided to put the position on hold for a while. She also said I interviewed strong and gave me some overall tips.

    I feel so much better about everything.

    I’m so glad I asked you for advice. It made me feel better to know it wasn’t my performance that led to me not landing the job.

    1. October 3, 2011 at 11:32 pm

      Hi Amber,
      Thank you so much for the update! I’m really happy that you learned that not getting the job had nothing to do with your interview performance. I also love that you got good feedback and tips on how you can improve. I’m really happy for you and thanks again for leaving a comment 🙂

  164. Melanie
    October 4, 2011 at 8:19 am

    Thanks! I sent thank yous after each interview and they asked for my references after the second interview. I really feel I have done all I can and presented myself well so now I guess I have to wait..

  165. G
    October 4, 2011 at 12:48 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Just came upon your website and was hoping for some advice. I recently applied for a job through an internal reference and went through all the interview rounds and basically when I finished, the hiring manager went on vacation for a week. The colleague referring me to this position is currently on the team I am applying for. During the week of the manager’s time off, I was told by my internal contact that my interview/presentation went phenomenally well and everyone was impressed with what I had to offer and I should expect something next week (now this week). The manager returned last Saturday and I’m not sure how long I should wait before re-initiating contact. Maybe I’m just being paranoid but it’s becoming quite nerve wracking. I was also told they had narrowed down their applicant pool to just me. So what’s the hold up?

    1. October 4, 2011 at 12:50 pm

      Hi G,
      Well after your interview when did the hiring manager tell you that they would be making a decision? I’m not sure if you found out through your friend or if the hiring manager or HR let you know that he was on vacation. In any case, you know that he is back so I would send him a follow up email. Even though you think that hey had narrowed down the applicant pool to just you (if they had done that then they would have checked references and offered you the job already) they might still be thinking things through. Maybe you did phenomenally well in the interview but the hiring manager still needs more time to decide if he wants you on the team (making sure he likes your personality and double checking that you do actually have what it takes i.e. the right qualifications). The hold up may also not be him but HR and paperwork that needs to be processed. I would try not to worry to much but definitely follow up and remember to emphasize your skills and qualifications that they liked in the interview. You have not been given the offer yet so you still need to win them over. Good Luck!

  166. Unlucky boy
    October 4, 2011 at 12:51 pm

    Hello, i just want to share a little story about my interview process. Please let me know what i should do now.

    I submitted my resume for a position (A) in the company XYZ, got a call from the HR. Lady from HR screened me and told me that she will submit my resume to the respective Team lead. ( If he likes my resume, she will schedule a phone interview). After 1 week i received an email from her, she scheduled me a phone interview with a big boss. I talked to him, he told me that i might be a better fit for a position B in the same company. I said alright as long as you guys are intrested in me. He told me i will receive another call some times during the week from another Boss. Later i recieved a call from another boss, he interviewed me for like 45 mins over the phone, and said I am a good candidate. He praised my technical skills. 2 Weeks later i recieved another email from the HR Lady, that the company wants to schedule a panel interview over Skype and she will let me know when it can be possible. 2 Weeks later she emailed me with some time slots and asked my availability. I agreed to one of her slots and then the big day came. 6 people interviewed me in groups of 2, the interview lasted about 4.5 hours. I was so exhausted and tired.

    Now it’s been like 3 weeks and the Hr lady is saying that she was unable to get the feedback from the panel, please email me next week. She has been doing it from like last 3 weeks. I don’t know what she is upto.

    I have already sent a Thank-you note to all the participants of the panel. Should i go ahead and contact one of the panel member about my situation or no ? I am feeling scared, i might piss them off.

    Please advise.

    1. October 4, 2011 at 12:52 pm

      Hi Unlucky boy,
      You definitely don’t want to piss them off. I’m going to assume that you are applying to a job that will mean you will need to relocate, is that right? (I’m assuming that because of the Skype interview). Even though you might have done really well in all the interview stages you are still not a local candidate. I’m sure the company is interviewing more candidates (that is why the HR lady is busy in the last 3 weeks) who maybe local and have a better chance of landing the job. Were you able to really connect with any of the hiring managers? How did you send the thank you notes to everyone? Did you send one to HR and asked them to forward it to the panel members or do you have all each of their email address? I wouldn’t worry too much as the recruitment process for this company seems to take a while. Saying that, if they felt that you were perfect for the job I’m sure you would have heard already. Did they ask you for your references? Just be patient or contact one of the hiring managers only if you feel that you made a connection with them. Hope that helps.

  167. Unlucky boy
    October 4, 2011 at 2:49 pm

    Hey Dorothy, Thank-you for your prompt reply. I appreciate your response.

    Hiring Managers, who were on the panel, were basically VP’s and Directors of different departements of the company. (Should i call them hiring managers ?)

    Yes i have the email address of all the individual panelist, i got them from the email i received from the HR lady about the breakdown of my interview.

    Yes i was able to connect ( personal level) , with one of the Sr Managers, who was actually in the same postion, couple of months back,the company is hiring resource for. We talked about weather and sports we like and other stuff. He was the only one to reply my Thank-you note, and wished me a safe weekend. He also told me during the interview, if i have any questions, just email him, but i was not sure what questions i can have and why he is telling me to do so, shouldn’t i be contacting HR after the interview.

    Yes i am in Texas, and the position is in Virginia. No she never asked for references, but said if i am the finalist, she will require the references and pay-check stubs from my past employment.

    I believe you are correct, they are not intrested in me, but will it be appropriate for me to email the Sr Manager directly, and ask him about my situation ?

    1. October 4, 2011 at 3:05 pm

      Hi Unlucky boy,
      As a recruiter whoever is sitting on the panel and makes the decision to hire a candidate is essentially the hiring manager. If I were I would definitely contact the Sr. Manager that you were able to connect with. Technically you already went through HR and she said that she didn’t receive any feedback yet. The point of the contact is for you to follow up in a polite friendly way. I think it would be a great opportunity to connect again especially since he did tell you to email him if you have any questions. Why not be honest with him and ask him how long the process is expected to be. Why not ask them if they have any concerns with hiring someone out of state? That’s when you reiterate that you’re really interested in the job and so try to eliminate any of their fears or doubts. Good Luck!

  168. Nikki
    October 4, 2011 at 3:13 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Just wanted to commend you on an awesome blog. I really enjoyed reading the advice and comments. It has opened my eyes alot more.

    Here’s my scenario,

    I had an interview with an IT Manager for communcation company 9/19 from contract agency. When the manager gave me the info on the time lenght. I decline it was only for several weeks. I asked him if there was anything long term that I could apply for he said yes and gave me a job number and I applied for the job. I spoke with the agency what took place and they stated to add their name to the referral as well as the managers name. The next day, a recruiter from the commucation called.. we talked about the position then when she got down the referral. She stated that it was something dealing with ethic code that they didn’t want to burn bridges with the vendors they use them to fill position there for contract. She said she will get back with me to see if they would pay for vendor fee. So the week passed and I called no response. Called the agency and she said let her try to reach out to her(recruiter). The agency stated the recruiter will contact me soon with an interview day. 9/27 recruiter called with an face-to-face interview for 9/30. So, I’m preparing myself for face-to-face interview, doing research on everything and everyone. To make sure I’m ready for Friday. 9/30 got there early the manager was late coming to the interview. It was very interesting interview. He had 3 pages worth of interview questions…didn’t ask all of them but he did take notes on what I said. Ask the all time favorite question – why should they hire me? I stated i was dedicated, hard worker, quick learner and do what is needed to get the job done. He said excellent. He asked me if there was anything I would like to ask him – I asked him – Do my qualification meet your job description that you are looking for? He stated yes, cause he’s looking for someone that is seasonal and my resume speaks in volumes. I don’t know if thats good or bad. After the interview he states that HR should be contacting you soon on this position. Then he states the same thing at the elevator that HR should be contacting you real soon on the this position. Because we need to fill this position now. I would love to work for this company but its not going to be easy.

    Can you give me an insight on this? It sounds like it may be a fake interview.

  169. Nikki
    October 4, 2011 at 3:15 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I did do a Thank you email to the IT manager. Hopefully, he will respond.

    1. October 4, 2011 at 4:44 pm

      Hi Nikki,
      Very interesting scenario. Since you were introduced to this company through an agency they will collect a fee from the company if you are offered a job. Even though the first job you applied to you ended up declining, if the company hires you they will have to pay the agency since they introduced you to them. I think the IT Manager was hoping to hire you without paying the agency and so the agency recommended to you to put them as one of your referrals. This recommendation was to make sure that the IT Manager knew that they would have to pay the agency. Even if the the company said that they would pay the fee that doesn’t mean that they really will. People say a lot of things and don’t really mean it unfortunately. I think the relationship between agency and company isn’t perfect. If I were you I would bug the hell of out of your recruiter(agency) as it is there job to try to get you the job and the decision whether they are going to hire you or not. Still be professional though. I would also follow-up with the IT Manager and really sell yourself again so if they have any doubts on hiring you (thinking twice if they want to pay the fee to the agency or go with another candidate). Make sure you are very professional, polite and excited for the opportunity to work for company. Overall, since the IT Manager loved you I think you have a very good chance of getting the job. I just think that the relationship between the agency and company isn’t great and if you don’t get the job I would say it was because of their working relationship and not your interview performance. Good Luck!

  170. Jason
    October 4, 2011 at 5:50 pm

    Hey Dorothy,

    I have another one for you. I went in on an informal interview back in August to meet with a Manager, for a company to which I was referred to by a current employee/friend. The recruiter had mentioned to me that it was for a specific position, the manager said they would have made a decision that week. I followed up, etc, they never got back to me.
    About Mid-September the same manager asked the recruiter to bring me back in for another meeting. Met with that same manager, and one of his subordinates. This time for a different position, but one I was definitely for which I was definitely qualified. Two days later, I got feedback saying the client had changed their requirements and I no longer was the best candidate. I had also mentioned I was open to learning new things, and wanted to grow with a company.
    They told me that there were other opportunities, and they wanted to get back to b/c I was a great candidate.
    Now (attempt 3), I am being set up for an interview with a position that I don’t necessarily think I am qualified for, but the recruiter passed my resume along and the client said they wanted to move forward with interviewing me.
    I’m not sure what to think about the company or the position. As I had mentioned, I don’t see myself as qualified. I’m definitely interested and would be a good new skillset to add to my portfolio, however how can I can be considered when my background is something completely different?
    I can only be brought in so many times and “rejected” before I fail to see the point in continuing to pursue any employment with the company.
    What are your thoughts on the matter?

    1. October 5, 2011 at 4:32 pm

      Hi Jason,
      Don’t let companies bully you around. After your first interview you followed up and they never got back to you. On or before the second interview you should have asked them why you weren’t a fit in the first interview? Why they never called you to let you know? and why they think you are now fit for this role? I would put it back on them and get them to explain things to you. I absolutely don’t think it’s right for them to call you in over and over again without an explanation. Are you being interviewed but the same manager as the other two times? If yes, this manager has no idea what he/she is doing. Since you agreed to come in for the third job interview even though you feel unqualified then you still have to go but have those questions ready for them and ask them what makes them think that you’re a good candidate for this particular role when you clearly don’t have the background or experience? You have nothing to lose. I just think they have no idea what they are doing and I don’t want you to be rejected again. Good Luck!

  171. Nikki
    October 5, 2011 at 10:48 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I did get a response from the agency and she was in contact with the recruiter stating they are still completing the review process so hopefully the recruiter will be able to get in touch with the IT manager by the end of the week. Still a waiting game but at least I know I still have a chance. I was going to call the IT manager (follow up call) but since I’ve got this news I will hold off till Friday. Do you have any suggestion?

    1. October 5, 2011 at 11:06 pm

      Hi Nikki,
      Since you already sent a thank you note to the IT Manager I would hold off calling them. You definitely still have a chance but remember he did say that they wanted to hire someone soon. I would remind the agency recruiter about that and ask them if they can try to get in touch with the company’s HR team sooner than later. Also, don’t expect a response from the IT Manager after you sent the Thank you note. Unless you asked a question the IT Manager probably will not respond. They are not being rude, it’s just that hiring managers don’t have time to thank you for your thank you letter. Be patient but be persistent with your agency recruiter. Good Luck!

  172. Stephen
    October 6, 2011 at 12:59 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    I really need your guidelines on my case. I went to an interview last Wednesday and it went really well. I met with the HR, team manager and team leader. The interview took one hour and forty minutes. I think the HR lady likes me. At the end of the interview, she said:”Finger cross, you will be joining us soon”. They asked for my references on that day and one of them was contacted on Monday morning. On Tuesday, the HR lady sent me an email saying that “they were very impressive with my interview and are looking at their future workload and resoucing needs. This will likely take some more time”. She said she will contact me again late next week (She initially said she will contact me this week which she did). How much chance do you think I will get this job? I completed my Ph.D and the job I am applying for is a graduate program normally for undergraduate students. I like the projects they are doing and really like to join them if the salary isn’t too bad. Are they finding difficult to fit me? Apparently, they are interviewing more undergraduate students this week. The company is also looking for a senior person in their team which I don’t think I am qualified at the moment. Do you have any idea what situation I am currently in? Thank you

    1. October 6, 2011 at 7:15 am

      Hi Stephen,
      I think you are in a very good situation. The HR lady not only said that she hoped you join the team soon but one of your references were contacted and she followed up with you letting you know that the company needed to take a little more time before they can offer. To me all of this means that you are their #1 candidate they just need to get some paperwork approved to offer you the job. Don’t worry about the other interviews as I’m sure they were scheduled before they found you and need to go through the process. Remember to send a thank you note and remind them if they need any more information from you or for you to clarify anything that you are available via XX (insert best mode of communication e.g. telephone, email). Be patient and I’m sure the HR lady will contact you as soon as she can but follow up at the end of next week if you don’t hear anything, which I doubt. I’m crossing my fingers too! Good Luck!

  173. G
    October 6, 2011 at 8:18 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    Thanks for getting back to me. I actually ended up waiting a little bit and the hiring manager did contact me yesterday. It wasn’t an offer, but they wanted to keep me abreast of what was going on at the time. They told me that there is a lot of “internal communication” currently going on, but so far everything is moving forward. They also told me all the feedback they got from everyone else was extremely positive. They also stated that they’re waiting for some green lights before proceeding with anything. I don’t know what to think of the conversation, but it does seem very positive and the hiring manager wanted me to remain confident that things will happen; it is just a matter of time. I was hoping to get your thoughts on this? I did ask for some timelines, but obviously that was impossible for them to give to me. In your experience and given the conversation, what is the average time before things get moving along? A month? Two weeks? I think it would be tough for any individual to sit around for two+ weeks wondering what the heck is going on. Thanks so much for your advice, this is a great website!

    1. October 6, 2011 at 8:25 am

      Hi G,
      That’s great news. I’m happy to hear that the feedback from everyone was extremely positive 🙂 Waiting for some green lights probably means finance and budget. Sometimes a job got approved months ago to be hired but that just means the recruiter can go out and post the job and interview. If they found someone they wanted they still have to get other paperwork signed and approved and a lot of things could have changed in a few months. My point is that it’s great that the hiring manager got back to you and was pretty honest with the process. I personally don’t see this taking longer than one week maybe two at the most. Are you working? If they know that you still need to give notice that usually pushes things a long a little quicker. Again, this is great news and I hope you hear from them soon. Be patient and I hope things work out for you.

  174. Aditi Varma
    October 6, 2011 at 8:27 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    I was interviewed 3 weeks ago for a job and the recruitment consultant told me it went very well- I was progressed to the next level, online tests- which also went quite well and she asked for my references- which I have given. This i did about a week ago, but they haven’t been contacted yet. However, today the recruiter called me and said that the CEO would like to meet me next week. The position I had applied for was at a fairly low level so I was surprised that the CEO wanted to meet with me, I asked the recruiter is all most applicants were met by the CEO. She said the ones they are really interested in generally do, and she said it would be an informal chat because he wants to get to know you better. She said the references would be contacted only after that. So does this mean that this meeting is also an “interview”? In your experience, can CEO meetings be a make-or-break interview even after everything else has gone off so well?What kind of questions should I expect from the CEO? And what kind of questions should I ask him?

    This is a fairly small company- 33 employees and are expanding quickly. It’s also a very niche firm that requires specific skills and experience.


    1. October 6, 2011 at 9:35 am

      Hi Aditi,
      Some CEO’s are really hands on when it comes to hiring especially in a small company but I wouldn’t let the job title of CEO worry you. Like the recruiter said, this will be an informal chat just to get to know you. There is nothing to be nervous about just be yourself, friendly, and excited to join the company. Keep in mind that this is still an interview so make sure that you know the job scope for the job that you are applying to and how important that role is for the rest of the company. You want to impress the CEO with your knowledge/interest in both the role and the company. The CEO will probably ask you where you see yourself in 5 years and what your career goal is. Make sure your goal is aligned with the company, even if it’s not. If you know the company is expanding you can ask questions about where he/she sees the company in 5-10 years. What is his/her goal for the company and there influence in their niche market? The CEO will probably try to find out if you are loyal. Are your plans to stick around for a while or not? It’s your job to give the impression that you are interested in the company and in it for for the long run i.e. you’re interested in seeing your career grow with the company. Just be yourself and don’t be nervous. Try to do some research on the CEO and see how he got to this point in his career. Good Luck and make sure that you have your references ready 🙂

  175. Nick
    October 6, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    Hi Dorothy,
    I am between jobs at the moment so before using up all my money in the bank I recently inerviewed for a stocking department position at a local Macy’s department store here in Texas, as a supplemental job until I find better a better paying job. Now after finding and reading yourr article, I want to say Thanks for the article. It reassured me that what I thought was probably true. The interview was the basic telling all about the job and job duties, stating the hours, can you work those hours, what postion best fits you and etc. Then the normal do you have any questions. I asked a few question and then the hr woman thanked me for coming, told me she had some more interviews ro give and I shoudl hear back from them within the next couple of days. Later that night I got an email response from them stating that they thanked me for my interest in said kob, that they had carefully reviewed my skills and qualifications, unfortunately though, they do not have an appropriate opportunity for me. My first thought after reading that was, what skills and qualifications does one really need to do a stocking type of position? A high school drop out could do that job. Then second I thought, why would they ask me to schedule and come in for an interview before they reviewed my skills and qualifications? That doesn’t seem like a normal way to hire people. Once again after reading your article I understand more of what I thought was right, that perhaps they just interview anyone that applys for a job with them. I could be wrong. I would appreciate any feedback on this. Anyway Thanks for your reassuring article.

  176. Nick
    October 6, 2011 at 1:21 pm

    Hi Dorothy,
    I just wanted to apologize for my typos. It helps to proof read before pressing submit, which I didn’t do. Thanks again for the enlightening artcle.

    1. October 6, 2011 at 2:00 pm

      Hi Nick,
      You’re not wrong Nick. Some companies are able to interview and pick anyone they want for a role because they get so many applications. I’m sure it had nothing to do with your skills and qualifications and more to do with the fit for the role. They probably do see you as someone who will not last meaning you have the potential of finding something better and this job would have bored you. You probably would not have gotten a along with the other members of the team so the HR person was probably saving you from a few weeks or months of torture before you realized the same thing and quit. When you’re applying to a job that you are overqualified for and/or requires little education or qualifications make sure that you modify your resume and answers to common interview questions so you seem a better fit for the role, especially if you’re just looking for a survival job or just want to earn some extra cash. Remember the market that you are trying to get into. Thanks for leaving a comment and glad that the articles are helpful.

  177. Jewel
    October 6, 2011 at 2:25 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I just wanted to mention about my last interview experience.

    I applied for a legal counsel position at a large company in early September via their on-line job posting. A couple of days later, I received a call from the company’s recruitment manager located out of state. He basically said that his job was to talk about the company itself and answer any questions I may have about the company and also to find out what my salary expectations were. He said that the position itself would be described more in detail by the hiring manager.

    The pre-screening interview with the recruitment manager seemed to have gone well and before I could write a thank you e-mail, I received an e-mail from the hiring manager to set up a phone interview for the following week. The phone interview with the hiring manager went well and she seemed impressed with my resume and credentials. It turns out that the hiring manager would be the person I would be reporting to should I be hired for this position and that she is based at a different location. She said that she would be coming to town in mid to end of September to conduct interviews for the position.

    On September 22, I had 3 one-on-one interviews, consisting of about 30min-45min each with other legal counsels and a lunch interview with the hiring manager. I thought that the interviews went well and asked questions about the working environment at the company to the other legal counsels as their work seemed unrelated to the position that I was applying for.

    I thought I clicked well with the hiring manager and she said that I will hear about the decision shortly. I believe I was the last person to be interviewed for this position because the hiring manager was going back to her base office the next day. She also seemed to want to hire someone soon as the position had been posted on the company website since July.

    It has now been 2 weeks since my last interview and I have not heard back from them. I sent thank you e-mails to everyone that I met with on the date of the interview and 2 of them replied with the generic “it was nice to meet you too.” I called and left a voice message to the hiring manager to follow up on the status of my application last Friday (September 30) and have not heard back.

    One interesting thing I have noticed is that the position is still posted, but the title of the position changed from “Senior” to “Associate,” while the job description remained the same, and my application appears now to be submitted under this new title. This change happened a week ago. My assumption is that, for whatever reason, they decided to downgrade the postion from a “Senior” to an “Associate” level. They may have offered the job to another candidate with this new title and are in the process of negotiating/conducting reference checks and this is the reason why the position itself is still posted.

    It has now been exactly 2 weeks since my last interview. I was not asked to provide references, so I have pretty much written this position off, but a small part of me is just wondering if I have a slightest chance and if I should follow up again with the hiring manager.

    Is it common to see a change in the title after the whole interviewing process? Should I bother writing to the hiring manager again?



    1. October 6, 2011 at 2:54 pm

      Hi Jewel,
      Thanks for your comment. I personally would only write thank you notes to face-to-face interviews that you attended. Think more hiring managers not just recruiters as recruiters normally don’t make the call to hire and you want to thank individuals who took the time out of there busy day to meet with you. Doing pre-screens is part of a recruiters job. Plus pre-screen interviews, which are usually on the phone don’t normally count. In any case, I’m surprised that you have not heard from the company yet, especially since they changed the job title. I think you maybe right that they filled the ‘Senior’ position. There are some roles in some companies that are always posted because it’s a very popular job in different departments e.g. Administrative Assistant and Associates. What I mean is I don’t think it matters that the job was posted since July as this might be a role that is always posted. They didn’t ask for your references so I think you are probably not going to get the ‘Associate’ job. I would definitely keep following up and let them know that you noticed the job title change on their website and you wanted to know what that meant. I honestly think you didn’t get the job but they still owe you an explanation. Your goal is to really just try to get feedback so you can understand how you can improve so you can perform better in future interviews. I hope they get back to you but don’t hold your breathe. Sorry and I hope we’re both wrong.

  178. G
    October 7, 2011 at 7:11 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    Thanks for getting back to me again =). They do know I am currently working and will need to put in my two weeks. Here’s to hoping things happen within the week. Thanks again for everything and I’ll keep you posted =).

  179. Andrew
    October 7, 2011 at 12:53 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    So here is my situation…I will try to keep it as brief as possible. There is a company that I REALLY admire and want to work for and have applied for positions with them continuously over the last few years. This year (2011), things finally started turning positive and I have actually gone on FOUR job interviews for various positions over the last few months. Each time, I have been told they “like me and think there is a place for me at the company, but another position may be a better fit.” Staying positive, I continued to interview and have used 3 sick/vacation days to do so, as each interview was with a team of 4-5 people and lasted nearly an entire day. My most recent interview went great, and I was very hopeful, as this position seemed to need a little less experience than some of the prior ones I had interviewed for. Well, I got an email from the recruiter about 4 days later asking me if I would be interested in a different job internally. Obviously confused, I replied, sure, but I remain interested in the job I just interviewed for…do you know the status?

    She replied and said unfortunately they have decided to hire another candidate, but that “the team feels very strongly that you belong somewhere within the company”, and thus, they are asking me to interview for another position…

    This current position, at least in terms of job title, is actually higher up the totem pole than any other position I’ve interviewed for, so I was a bit confused. However, it is a bit less visible, as it is on site at a client full time. They asked when I could come in for an interview, and I said it may be extremely difficult for me to take time out of work since I have already done that three times this year for your company. They agreed to start with a phone interview with a Director, did that, went great, and she immediately asked how we could meet in person with her and the VP for an interview. Long story short, they agreed to come down into the city near my house (the office is in the suburbs) to accomodate me for the interview. We just met at a fancy schmancy hotel downtown and I talked with each person for about 40 minutes, thought it went great, was enthusiastic, etc. At the end of the interview they told me someone from HR will be in touch with you sometime, and “good luck.”

    It has been SO exhausting going through this process four times, and I would literally walk over broken glass for this job, as I LOVE the company and what this job would entail. Do you think I am in a good position here, are they ringing me around, and did the phrase “good luck” mean they enjoyed meeting me but that I won’t be getting the job, AGAIN!? Help? I didn’t specifically ask an exact date on when I would hear anything, as she just said someone from HR will be in touch, so I left it at that.

  180. Andrew
    October 7, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    I forgot to add…at the end of the interview (which took place at a table sitting outside of a Starbucks) the two interviewer’s looked at each other and said “Should we have a debrief session now?”, and then told me to wait there for 5 minutes while they walked away. For some reason I figured they might come back with an offer but then also thought that according to the company website “all employment offers are required to first pass a successful background verification check.” They thanked me for coming to meet them, told me that someone from HR would be in touch, and then I was on my way. Should I read anything into the fact that they had a debrief session separately while I waited there, and then just said someone from HR would be in touch, while wishing me good luck? I am trying not to over-analyze but clearly not succeeding haha…

    1. October 7, 2011 at 2:40 pm

      Hi Andrew,
      Thank you for leaving a comment. Well your situation is very interesting. At first I thought this company is just being nice to you and no one has the balls to tell you that you just aren’t a fit and to move on. You have been very persistent and I bet because of the many times you met with HR and different hiring managers you almost already feel like an employee to them 😉 It seems like this last time because they accommodated you on the interview that you have a better chance of getting hired. Is this job that they invited you to interview for actually a current open job on their website? I just hope that it is because if it’s not that means they are trying to interview you for a role that essentially does not exist yet. I understand that you really admire and want to work for this company but you have to as yourself how many more times are you going to go through this, if they don’t hire you this time. I’m not sure why the interviewees decided to debrief and then come back to you with nothing. Seems a little unorganized but maybe because they were out of there comfort zone (not in an office) they acted a little weird. In any case, I think you still have a good chance of getting the job (if it’s a real job) but you need to follow up. Contact HR on Monday and ask for an update. Remember to send thank you notes to everyone and try to point out specific skills sets that you have that would be an asset for this particular job. Even though they have seen you four times you want to make sure that you keep your relationship friendly but professional by reminding them that you do have the skills to do the job well. I’m afraid that because you applied for so many jobs and seem like an employee already that the interviews may not be taken as serious as they should. Make sure that you’re not too friendly and come off as all these interviews and time wasted for your company is no big deal for me. I like that you stressed to them that you have already taken a lot of time off to accommodate their interview schedule. I just hope they will take you seriously this time. I want to stress that everything sounds good for this interview and I think you have a good chance of getting it so stop over analyzing, follow up and be patient 🙂

  181. Alex
    October 7, 2011 at 3:07 pm

    Thank you for this article ,

    Recently I have been in a group interview at the Disney Store that’s opening soon and I have been getting anxious about it. The woman was nice to the group and I don’t think I flagged up at all. And she said that she’ll contact us ASAP when they confirm something about something (I forgot what it was), and this was on Tuesday. Yesterday a girl in my uni class (Who was in the same group interview as me) got a missed call from the Store and she had to phone them back. And she got the job. Now since they only got my house number I normally have to check to see if they called my house number and sadly I have no response to them.

    And today is now Friday and I still have no reply, and I got pretty impatient about it. It’s like how come they called someone about a job but not even calling me and we’re both in the same CLASS. To me it doesn’t exactly add up. I would like some sort of a response about it. Maybe they’re calling a certain amount of people a day or something like that. Since they need quite an amount of staff since it’s a new shop. Sadly I do not know the email address of the manager who gave us the interview so I couldn’t send a thank you note. But I was polite and said thank you at the interview. I do wonder though whether it’s a fake interview though…since I sorta knew that the girl was going to get that job.

    I hope a hear a response, and thank you for reading.

    – Alex.

    1. October 7, 2011 at 5:59 pm

      Hey Alex,
      How did you know that the girl in your class who got the job was going to get the job? If you’re friends with the girl why not ask her to mention your name to the HR person or ask her for the HR person’s contact information so you can follow up and not just hope and wait for a response from them. I’m sure because this a new store that they received a lot of applicants and did a lot of interviews. Group interviews are tricky as well. You really need to try to make yourself stand out from the rest of the candidates while the other candidates are in the room. It’s never a good idea just to sit there and blend into the background and be quiet. Again, I think this Disney Store has the luxury to pick and choose who they want to hire and unfortunately it may not have been you. You probably didn’t really stand out and others did.This was not a fake interview. I think you should try to learn from this experience. Try to figure out what makes you different from the other candidates for this role. What type of candidate was the Disney Store looking for? i.e. high energy, customer service, bubbly personality etc. I understand you might really want a job but maybe this particular job just isn’t the right fit for you. I would suggest that next time you listen or write down what the interviewer is saying especially when she’s talking about when you’ll hear from her with a decision and to try to get a phone number or email so you can follow up. I hope you get a response soon too and that it’s a positive one. Thanks for leaving a comment and Good Luck!

  182. Confoosed
    October 7, 2011 at 8:32 pm

    Thanks so much for answering people’s questions. I wonder if you have any advice for me.

    On Thursday (yesterday) I had two interviews. The first was with a non-profit that has a very lucrative contract position that lasts about 5 months. There is no chance of it going perm. It would be good money but no benefits at all. They loved me and invited me the same day to come back next week. The recruiter told me to get my references ready.

    That afternoon I went on an interview with a huge multinational. It’s perm, full time, in my salary range, where I want to work, and I would like the job very much. The interview went super well, the hiring manager asking me about salary, what title I wanted, and sid that he’s going to make a decision “very soon” because he wanted to get someone in there while the funding for the position is firm. I am well qualified and think there is a good chance I’ll get an offer, but of course you never know.

    But what do I do if I get the contract offer first? They will want an answer within a couple of days. Do I let the full time job I really want know the situation or are they going to think I’m trying to strong arm them? I’m a very good fit but there are a lot of candidates out there these days.

    Any suggestions? Thank you!

    1. October 7, 2011 at 10:16 pm

      Hi Confoosed,
      First of all congratulations on being in such a great situation. Having possibly two good job offers is a great problem to have 🙂 Secondly, you can always call the non-profit group and say that something came up and you wondered if you can move your interview for a few days later or the beginning of the following week. This would give you some more time to then follow up with the multinational group and see where they are with making a decision. It does sound like they will probably get back to you pretty soon if the interviewer said that he’s going to make a decision very soon while they have the funding. Hopefully just moving the interview for the non-profit role will be enough time for you to hopefully get the offer from the multinational group, if not and you are asked to give the non-profit references then ask your references to not get back to the company right away but to call them back one full day later. Just stalling them for one extra day may do the trick. If not and you get an offer before the multinational group decides then you still have a few days to think it over and at that point since a sufficient amount of time has passed I would contact the multinational company and ask for an update because you are being invited to other interviews but you are obviously interested in this particular role. I really hope this works out for you and that you won’t need to do all this stalling because you’ll hear form the multinational group soon 🙂 Good Luck and my fingers are crossed for you 🙂

  183. Searching
    October 8, 2011 at 1:42 pm

    I recently applied for a job that I ended up not being selected for, despite being told (in the same call to say that I was not selected) that I gave a great interview and was second choice of the small number of candidates they actually interviewed; I was also encouraged to apply for similar openings that were coming up shortly (they did, and I have re-applied).

    If I’m offered the chance to interview for one of these new openings for the same job, won’t it be weird to have the same answers to the same questions being asked again? I’ve never re-applied to a job before so I have no idea how the process works!


    1. October 8, 2011 at 3:25 pm

      Hi Searching,
      It’s not weird for HR to hear the same answers to the same questions from a candidate that has already been interviewed before. For me it’s nice to hear the same answers so I know that the person is consistent and telling the truth. I interviewed one lady four different time for similar roles and each time she had different answers for every question; now that was weird! Anyway, you will probably be interviewed by different hiring managers as well so they haven’t heard your answers before. Even if they are the same hiring managers they probably forgot what you said before as they can’t remember every answer that every candidate said. The point is don’t even worry about it. Just focus on making sure that you do have good solid examples for them. You have the upper hand as you know the questions that they are going to ask you (some will probably change) so you have the time to think of some pretty perfect responses. Remember to have some questions for the interviewees as well and if you sign up for my blog via email you get some fantastic questions that you can use. Good Luck!

  184. Melanie
    October 11, 2011 at 8:52 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    So the company I interviewed with and I have been waiting to hear from contacted all my references! Normally I would think that’s awesome and patiently wait to hear from them.. but they told one of my references that it was down to myself and one other candidate. I have heard that on the last four interview processes I have been through and they have chosen the other candidate in every instance. Now they spoke to this reference at 330 on Friday afternoon so I wasn’t surprised not to hear from them Friday and it was a long weekend so I hope to hear something today, I’m just no longer feeling overly confident. I mean it’s great to get to the final 2 but it makes it sting so much worse not to be the successful applicant when I know how close I was. Of course if I don’t get the job, I will ask how I can improve and work on going into future interview situations, but I am really getting bummed and I haven’t even been rejected (for sure) yet, lol. So I guess my question is : why would the company tell my reference it was down to two candidates? And by telling him that, and not that I was their preferred applicant, do you think I am less likely to get the job?

  185. Melanie
    October 11, 2011 at 10:38 am

    And I have also learned that my reference told the potential employer that I am a hard worker, motivated, fast learner, willing to go the extra mile, lots of energy, confident and positive – lots of positive things and the only thing against me is I am younger (but I’m nearly 30 so not really young) and therefore don’t have loads of experience.. How do I get past this issue!!!! The experience card is the one I get dealt most often when I don’t win a job competition!

    1. October 11, 2011 at 10:45 am

      Hi Melanie,
      It’s very hard when it comes down to two candidates; for the employer/recruiter and the candidates. Most of the time it does come down to experience. You can’t feel bummed when getting this far in the interview process. You’re young and depending on the job they will think that’s an asset or not. In either case you just need to be patient. Getting one or two more years of experience might be the ticket that you need to land these jobs. You obviously have a good resume and you interview well. You just need some more experience. Remember the company is looking at your experience and if you will work well with their team. Will people take you seriously? Can you hold your own? Sometimes recruiters and hiring manager know if a candidate will have trouble working with the current team. Age and experience is usually the answer. Be patient and the time will come when your experience and age will not be an issue. Good Luck.

  186. Catherine
    October 11, 2011 at 10:47 am

    Thanks for the article! I recently had a couple of interviews for a project manager position for a firm that I highly respect. The first interview was about an hour on the phone with HR and then I was scheduled another phone interview with the hiring manager when he returned back from a work trip.
    I spoke with the hiring manager a week later for over an hour and he said he was wrapping up interviews that week and would contact who he wanted to come in for a face to face interview the next week. I never heard from him so I sent him a follow up email restating interest, experience, etc…only to get an email back saying he was going to be out of the office the following week and he would get back to me the week he gets back. It is now Tuesday of the week he is back and I have yet to hear from him.
    Do I contact him again or just throw in the towel? I do not want to harrass him nor waste thier time if they have someone else in mind. What was supposed to be a two week process has already turned into a five week one. what should i do? help!!!

    1. October 11, 2011 at 11:17 am

      Hi Catherine,
      Sounds to me that there is no real rush to fill this role. Two phone interviews (a week apart) then he was going to “wrap up interviews that week” so they can schedule a face-to-face the following week. It all sounds pretty nice but since the hiring manager has been away “out of the office” during most of the recruitment process I doubt he has had the time to schedule everyone for interviews. My point is he seems busy and I think you’ve done everything perfectly so far. You followed up and he said he would get back to you this week. Since it’s only Tuesday I would wait a few more days and contact him again on Thursday or Friday. You are not harassing him. You are following up like a good candidate should. Remember you’re not asking him if you got the job you’re just asking him if you got the interview. I personally think this manager should have an assistant or someone else help him with filling this role. Be patient and if the phone interview went well then I hope you get to meet this person face-to-face so you can prove to them in person why you’re the best candidate. Again I would wait it out a few more days. Good Luck!

  187. Unlucky boy
    October 11, 2011 at 1:08 pm

    Hi Dorothy, its me Unlucky dude again.

    I hope you remember, i told you my interview experience with a firm. They took Skype interview and stuff. So here is the update. Last week (Monday) i got a call from them asking for references, i provided the same to them. On Tuesday the same week, i got calls from my references that, they have received a call from a ABC company asking about me. Seems all good to me at this point.

    Now almost 14 days have passed, its Tuesday again, and i haven’t heard any thing from the company as of yet. The HR lady has not replied nor i have contacted them.

    Any advise ?

  188. Unlucky boy
    October 11, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    Oops Just received an email from them, that i am the finalist, They are working towards getting me an offer 😀

    1. October 11, 2011 at 1:32 pm

      That’s great news Unlucky boy, Congratulations!

  189. Scott
    October 11, 2011 at 1:48 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Great blog! I have been meeting with a company about a position for the past 4 months. At the beginning of July, I spoke with the hiring manager and he informed me that he would be offering me the position within the next few weeks. After several weeks he told me that the position was on hold but that I was “his guy”. I kept in touch with him over the next couple of months, and at the beginning of September he called me personally (a first) and told me that he wanted me to come in as a new position had opened up. I went in a week later, and we had a very informal meeting in which he told me that I got the job. We discussed salary, a start date, all of the details of the position, and he took down all of my information again and told me that I would be receiving an offer letter either from himself or from the HR manager. This was several weeks ago. I emailed him after a few days to make sure that the start date we discussed was still valid, as I had not received any of my paperwork. He told me that he was revamping the training curriculum and would be in touch with me soon to confirm the date and reiterated that I didn’t need to worry, that I was “his guy”. About a week later I still had not heard from him, so I emailed him back. He informed me of a family emergency that he was dealing with, and said that as soon as that was resolved he would fill out the necessary paperwork to get me in. He did not try to blame it on anyone else and basically took the blame and apologized for the delay and thanked me for being patient. Here is the question: This was two weeks ago and I still haven’t seen anything. I don’t want to be insensitive to what he is going through, but with every day that passes I wonder more and more what is going on. At what point would it be appropriate to call him? Thanks for your help.

    1. October 11, 2011 at 2:11 pm

      Hi Scott,
      This is horrible. I hate to hear stories like this because it’s just not fair to you. This is why recruiters/HR need to be present when a so called “offer” has been made. I think this is just an over excited hiring manager moving to quickly for HR. If he hasn’t even filled out the paperwork then my only worry is that this job has not actually been approved yet. Do you have HR’s email? You should absolutely call him! I would reply to one of his emails that state that you are “his guy” and to confirm the original start date and copy HR on it. It looks like he needs some help with the paperwork and once HR finds out that he actually offered you the job then they will get into action and get the ball rolling. Call him first though and depending on what he says still send the email just confirming your conversation. Sounds like you have been very patient so good for you. I just hope that all this apologizing and waiting is worth it. Good Luck!

  190. G
    October 11, 2011 at 3:48 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I know it’s been <a week since I last wrote to you regarding my situation. I was just wondering at what point do you think it would be a good idea to reach back out to the hiring manager again? I know you had said you don't think this would take longer than a week and two at most. However, do you think it would be in my interest to eventually reach out to the hiring manager if I don't hear anything or to just sit tight and wait it out while interviewing elsewhere?

    1. October 11, 2011 at 6:06 pm

      Hi G,
      Yes I think eventually you should reach out to the hiring manager and ask for an update. They are are the ones that told you that they want things to move along and they are just waiting for some green lights. Bureaucracy can be a bitch sometimes and can really hold up a lot of plans unfortunately. If I were you I would wait until Monday (only three more business days) Remember they contacted you and gave you an update last week and I think they would call you again if they had an update, which they may not at this time. Remember your references were already checked and things looked great. Just be patient and definitely interview elsewhere in the mean time. I really really hope they call you soon as I’m sure all this waiting is killing you 😉

  191. Andrew
    October 12, 2011 at 10:41 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    It’s Andrew from a few posts above….First, thanks so much for answering my question and providing your insight. I really appreciate it. As I mentioned, I met with the two women Friday morning at a hotel downtown, and they mentioned “Someone from HR will be in touch,” but I didn’t get a timeline. I just saw your response now, and it is currently Wednesday morning and I haven’t heard anything. I sent follow up thank you emails Monday morning. Should I email HR today and ask for an update, or should I wait until Thursday or Friday of this week? I don’t want to seem eager, and have heard you should wait a week or so until following up, but wanted to see your thoughts.


    1. October 12, 2011 at 10:55 am

      Hi Andrew,
      Did you get any response from the email you sent on Monday? If not, yes I would call them and ask if they received your email and proceed to ask them for an update. As usual be profession and make sure that they are treating you like a serious candidate. As per my other comment I’m just worried that they feel that they can walk all over you. Good Luck!

  192. Jenni
    October 12, 2011 at 10:59 am

    Hi Dorothy,
    Good morning! I ran into your site last night and already love it!
    It helps a lot and makes me know that my interview probably just okay instead of well…sad news 🙁

    Here’s my scenario! I had a interview last Wednesday (10/5) setup by a recruitment agent. I met three people which are financial associate, director and VP. The company is a good company but the position belongs to an expanding small department.

    Everything went well in my first thought but I adjusted that it’s only okay for them after reading your article. They really care about the time for interviewing, setting up an alarm to remind them time’s up, and the VP even tell me he has a meeting to attend right after my interview, which is true because he checked with his assistant.

    After the interview, I called the agent immediately and he’s apprently in the middle of something and said he would phone me back but he never….so I called and e-mailed and left VM two days after the interview but still get no response.

    Does it mean I’ve already been eliminated? but according the VP, I’m the first one they’re interviewed with. will it be that quick to exclude a candidate? or can I skip the agent and contact one of my interviewer directly to ask about their feedback? Any suggestion?



    1. October 12, 2011 at 11:06 am

      Hi Jenni,
      Be patient. I’m sure the recruiter from the agency is busy and probably has no news to share with you just yet. If you were the first candidate that they interviewed they are probably still in the process and won’t tell any candidate that they liked them or not until the whole process is over. Be patient. If you got the interview through the agency and you call the interviewers directly they will probably tell you to get in touch with the agency. Did they give you their contact information directly and tell you to call them anytime? If not then don’t. This is why companies like working with agencies so they don’t have to deal with candidates call them directly. Once the recruiter hears some news they will probably call you. Usually they are eager to hear your side of the experience so I am a little worried that the recruiter didn’t call but again they just might be busy or just a bad/rude recruiter. Just be patient and continue to apply for other roles. Glad you love the site and Good Luck!

  193. Jordan
    October 12, 2011 at 11:11 am

    I interviewed for a job at a hospital last week and was told that I would hear back Monday or Tuesday of this week (it is now Wednesday). Is it safe to assume I didn’t get the job? Also, is it acceptable to call them and check in to see if I can get any helpful feedback as to why I didn’t get the job?

    1. October 12, 2011 at 12:28 pm

      Hi Jordan,
      Yes since they let you know that you should hear back by Monday or Tuesday you can absolutely call them today (Wednesday) and ask for feedback so you can improve for future interviews.

  194. Andrew
    October 12, 2011 at 1:06 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I just heard back from the recruiter. Initially, I wanted to punch a hole in the wall, but objectively, I knew the position I had just interviewed for was above my level (and I was surprised they even considered me for the position, to be honest, as the position needed someone with 6-8 years of extensive experience, and I have closer to 3-4).

    Anyway, here is the response I got from the recruiter, word for word.

    I hope another xxCompany recruiter has reached out to you by now!

    Audrey and Karen LOVED you, but they thought you were too junior for the xxx position, and they strongly encouraged me to find you a good home at xxCompany.

    Please let me know if you have received contact from any other recruiters at xxCompany.”

    How should I proceed from here?

  195. Andrew
    October 12, 2011 at 1:26 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    My plan currently is to respond and say Nobody has contacted me but I remain interested in working for XX company. However, I am also in the process of interviewing for a position with two other companies (this is true).

    On their website I see a posting for a position that is the same title as the one I just interviewed for but one level down (an Associate Client Manager instead of Client Manager). Should I inquire about this position or let them lead? Also, how aggressive should I be about making myself unavailable for an interview, since any future interviews would be my FIFTH with the company this year?

  196. Andrew
    October 12, 2011 at 1:26 pm

    Haha, didn’t realize I included the name of the company….whoops! Oh well…

    1. October 12, 2011 at 2:37 pm

      Hi Andrew,
      I have edited out the company name in your comment. I think your plan is good. I think since the recruiter has been asked to ‘find you a good home at xx company’ that you should absolutely tell her that you just saw the posting for an Associate Client Manager and that you think you would be perfect for that role. See how she responds and then definitely remind her that you are so interested in working at this company that you have interviewed for them four times. Show that you have been very persistent to work there in a light hearted joking kind of way but that you are interviewing with other companies as well.
      I don’t think you need to be aggressive at all. Just state the facts and see what the recruiter says. Remember her job now is to try to find you a home there so lets see what she can do and hopefully you won’t have to go in for the fifth time 😉

  197. Becky
    October 12, 2011 at 4:12 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I really liked your article and I found it very informative. I was wondering if I could receive some feedback as well. I interviewed for a position on Wednesday of last week with the HR manager and the person who is currently in the position now. The HR Manager called me back yesterday to schedule a 2nd interview. I will be interviewing from 8:00am until around lunch with all four people that I will be working closely with and then the HR Manager is going to take me out to lunch. I’ll be interviewing with the CEO, the CFO and the Controller. If I am hired, the HR Manager will be my direct supervisor but I will also support the other three people who are interviewing me with a few smaller tasks although HR will be my main role.
    I haven’t interviewed with several different people like this or had a lunch interview in several years and I’m really nervous. It’s a small company with under 100 employees and that’s why I’m guessing they are having me interview with so many different people and then do lunch.
    I really want this job and I don’t want to blow it! Any advice would be appreciated! If I go through all that stress of meeting with so many people and a lunch and then end up not getting the job I’ll be so disappointed.

    1. October 12, 2011 at 5:50 pm

      Hi Becky,
      Don’t be nervous or at least try not be nervous 😉 I bet you will get this job because #1 you’ve already met the HR Manager (your future direct supervisor) and he/she obviously liked you so much that she #2 not only invited you to meet with the four people that you will be working with but #3 she said she will take you out for lunch afterwards. I actually think they like you very much and want you on their team badly. If you were just a normal candidate then the HR Manager would have only scheduled you to meet with the team and only after the HR Manager got the members feedback would they invite you back for less formal interview lunch. So since they want you as much as you want them I think the interview will go great. The HR Manager just wants the team to meet you before she goes ahead and hires you. Just bring your A game. Some of the same questions that you were asked in the first interview may come up so be prepared and mostly be prepared to talk about yourself, your past and where you see yourself in the future. I’m sure they’ll have some scenario questions for you and just make sure that you have some questions for them. If you sign up to get my website via email you receive over 80+ interview questions plus questions that you should as the interviewer to help you prepare. I bet the lunch will be nice and casual and the HR Manager will hope you liked the team as much as he/she knows that they liked you. Remember that interviews go two ways so try to really find out about the culture and management style of the team so that you will be happy working with them. I don’t think you’ll blow it or be disappointed later. Again, just relax and be confident that they really want you almost as badly as you want them. You have great experience and skills that they know will be an asset. Just communicate well, be clear and don’t fidget. Good Luck!

  198. Stephen
    October 12, 2011 at 9:21 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Thanks for your previous reply. I just got an update from the HR lady (after I sent her a follow-up email) and I was a bit disappointed that she told me they were realistically looking at this taking another month or so. But she asked me to stay in touch with them. Then we decided to get in touch again at the end of this month. I don’t know whether this is their nice way to say no. Being an engineering consultency, they are highly project driven. So I guess it really depends on whether they win any big projects any time soon or not. As for me, I should just assume I didn’t get the job and apply somewhere else. Thank you for your time looking at my case and I really like your website! 🙂

    1. October 12, 2011 at 9:25 pm

      Hi Stephen,
      Yes I would be a little disappointed to with her update but at least you got an update. I personally think you did get the job but finances fell through. If they are a project driven firm then I’m sure in a few months they will contact you and want to offer you the role. I bet since the decision to not hire you was mainly because of finances that they may be just as disappointed that they can’t offer you anything right now as you are. Yes, I would continue to apply to other roles and companies but don’t be surprised if you get another update in a month or so 😉 Thanks for update Stephen.

  199. Sally
    October 12, 2011 at 9:26 pm

    Hi Dorothy! I just stumbled upon your blog and have found it very helpful! I just have a quick question. I had an interview today. I was scheduled to have the interview with the hiring manager for the position, but when I got there the interviewer was a manager from another department (side note: the hiring manager did step in for a moment to meet me). Anyway, I was kind of thrown off and didn’t know at first that this manager was going to be the one interviewing me and now cannot, for the life of me, remember her name (I know, it’s terrible). I want to send a thank you letter, but I obviously want to address it to the correct person. Would it look bad to email the recruiter and ask for the name of the person who interviewed me? It’s a very large company, so finding the name of the person on my own has proven to be very difficult. Also, should I send a thank you to the hiring manager as well even though I only met her for a minute?

    1. October 12, 2011 at 10:06 pm

      Hi Sally,
      In this case I would email the recruiter right away. I would just be honest. Just say that you want to send a thank you note but you cannot remember the managers name as you were prepared to meet with XX (hiring manager) and were actually interviewed by someone else. In re: to sending a thank you to the hiring manager that you only met with for a minute, yes I would send an email only because I’m not clear on who you would report to if you got the job. I would just send them a quick thank you stating that you wanted to thank both XX (hiring manager) and the other manager you met with for taking the time to meet with you and talk about the role that you are very interested in. Then just be honest again and ask the hiring manager if they can provide you with the managers name and job title so you can send them a thank you note as well. This is very common and does not look badly on the candidate unless they don’t send a thank you note just because they were too scared to ask for the name of the manager. People are nervous in job interviews and easily forget things. I think hiring managers and recruiters would forget candidates names but we are lucky to have their resumes right in front of us 😉 Good Luck!

  200. Jenni
    October 13, 2011 at 12:04 pm

    Hi Dorothy,
    Thanks you for prompt reply :), I’m updated my situation and have another question hope you can suggest me how to deal with it.

    The agent seems really not care about and hurry at all, so I decide to do the follow up one more time. I called the agent yesterday and finally got the feedback. he said they think me doing well, there’s a possible contract and he asked my current salary. So I guess it’s a good sign, but my situation is I wrote him an e-mail giving him my expectation and told him that I will leave US for three weeks from next Wednesday but no reponse again. Based on the agent guessing, the hiring process may finish in 2-3 weeks,how am I supposed to deal with if the decision have been made up? Do you have similar experience before?

    1. October 13, 2011 at 12:32 pm

      Hi Jenni,
      I’m not sure if I understand your question but once a recruiter finds out that you are on vacation or not reachable then they will probably stop pursuing you until you get back. Being away for a few days is acceptable and usually will not have an impact on the recruitment process but three weeks is a long time. They like having candidates available. This company may not be in a rush to hire but the recruiter will probably show them people who are currently available. If the hiring process finishes before you get back just make sure that your recruiter can get in touch with you via email or phone. I think the recruiter didn’t respond to your email because they are interested in people who are available to work right now. I would just enjoy your vacation and get back to the recruiter and your job search when you get back.

  201. G
    October 13, 2011 at 1:30 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Quick question, but for turning in a two weeks notice, what is the best way about this? I am in the throes of a post-grad program and my director/coordinator are over an hour away. I know they generally say avoid e-mails, but would a phone call with an e-mail suffice? Just not sure what would be the most PC way to go about this down the line. Thanks!

    1. October 13, 2011 at 2:38 pm

      Hi G,
      Each situation is different. For you I think a phone call followed by an email is suffice. Normally when your career and you want to quit your job you want to do it in person because not only do you not want to burn any bridges but you want the experience to be as pleasant as possible in case you do work with this manager/director/supervisor or company again. It’s just common courtesy to do it face-to-face but of course sometimes that’s not possible so a phone call is suffice and following up with an email.

  202. Bonnie
    October 13, 2011 at 5:34 pm

    Hi Dorothy, Great site you have here, filled with lots of good information. I am just overwhelmed with my job search….I thought maybe you could help me out. I have been umemployed for 10 months now, have had at least 10 interviews but no offers. I am concerned maybe it is my past employment that could be holding me back. I was let go due to poor sales….. was told they would not give out the reason if anyone called. My job prior also the same…. let go due to poor sales….although I believe there were other reasons behind this. When asked why I left I have been saying I resigned so I could look for other opportunities. My question is can they find out why I was let go…..should I hire a reference check company to see what my past employers say? Really could use your advice. Thank you so much Bonnie

    My past two employers have been major retailers if that makes any difference……also I have been asked to sign back ground check apps. as well as been told they check my references.

    1. October 13, 2011 at 8:55 pm

      Hi Bonnie,
      Thanks for leaving a comment and glad you find the site helpful. If you were let go from a company and I checked your references and asked why you left they would have to say that they let you go. They would never say that you resigned. I’m not sure if you saying that you resigned when in fact you have not is the reason why you haven’t gotten work. Have you made it to the final stage of the interview process and then were asked for your references and then been rejected? If not I think you just maybe over analyzing and maybe just getting a little demotivated from being unemployed for 10 months. Are you applying for sales driven jobs? if so, I would possibly look at other avenues. You can check your own references if you really feel that it’s the reason you’re not getting hired. 10 months is a long time. I’m sure you’re tired, frustrated and maybe desperate to find a job. Before spending money and worrying about your references have you asked for feedback on your past interviews? If not, I would because you can only learn and get better if you’re told what your doing wrong or what you can improve on. I hope this helps and remember to stay positive. Being unemployed can be tough so make sure you read “surviving unemployment and depression” Hope that helps and stay positive!!!

  203. G
    October 13, 2011 at 11:15 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Thanks for the update, I’ll definitely call them then. Interesting thing happened earlier today, I got called by HR from the company I am applying to and they asked if I signed any non-disclosures etc and also told me to inform them if I am interviewing elsewhere. Is that normal for them to be asking me if I am interviewing elsewhere?

    1. October 13, 2011 at 11:24 pm

      Hi G,
      Yes these questions are normal. They want to see if you are in fact in the middle of an interview with other companies. It’s just a note to put on your file so if they decide to pursue you they will need to act fast. Depending on how big the company is they might also wonder if you are being interviewed by another department in the company. Sometimes they may forget to check their recruitment system, which would tell them if you are or not and its also nice to hear from the candidate. If you are interviewing with other companies and they ask you the names of the company don’t tell them; It’s simply none of their business.

  204. James
    October 13, 2011 at 11:28 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Wow Great Article you have here. It allows me to get a glimpse on the on the other side of the table. Great Job.

    I recently went through an interview with a recruiter (which from my point of view went well) for an internal position at my large company (different department), after our conversation she gave me the typical response of “we’ll get back to you 1-2 weeks”.

    After a week, I wrote a follow up email (yes I know its a bit late). It turns out that my original recruiter was scheduled to take maternity two days after my initial interview !? (Is this normal?). In addition, the “out of office” (indefinitely) reply suggested that I contact another colleague, which I did.

    But, I also got an “out of office” (indefinitely) from the other 2nd colleague with suggestion that I contact a 3rd colleague. At this point I’m kind of confused and hesitant to contact the 3rd colleague, it might just refer me to a 4th colleague. Also it might look bad on me.

    I would really appreciate your input. Thanks a bunch.

    1. October 13, 2011 at 11:46 pm

      Hi James,
      Glad you like the article 🙂 I believe you might have been involved in a fake interview. I think this because it sounds like you just had an interview with the recruiter. The hiring manager usually makes the decision to hire not the recruiter so where were they? Also, what’s with all the ‘out of office’ responses? Is everyone on vacation?! In any case, I don’t believe you can be represented properly. Usually if the recruiter likes you they push to hire you. Now your original recruiter is gone and passed you on to another who passed you on to another. It only looks bad on you if you don’ t continue and follow up with the 3rd colleague. Since this is an internal job you have to keep trying to contact someone because you need to stay professional and show that you had genuine interest in the role i.e. interest in your professional development. You want to make sure that you have a good relationship with HR and this may be hard in your case since the whole department is on vacation 😉 Good Luck!

  205. Nikki
    October 14, 2011 at 12:38 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    This is update on the position. Thanks for the insight. I didn’t get the job it has been since 9/30 and I sent a thank you letter on that Tuesday. I haven’t heard anything from them. Recruiter stated that HR hasn’t been able to connect with the hiring manager. I tried calling as follow up but no response but I didn’t leave a message. Then I noticed that the job was still out there but today I checked and the job is no longer out there. I assume that I didn’t get the job cause no one reached out to me. I did believe I had the job cause of what the hiring manager stated to me. Moving on to the next job. Thanks again for your insight.

    1. October 14, 2011 at 6:47 am

      Sorry to hear that Nikki. I think this may not have had anything to do with you. I think that it had to do with the failed relationship between the agency and the company. Either your recruiter is lying that he/she cannot get in contact with the hiring manager or he/she is telling the truth and if that’s the case then it seems that the company does not want anything to do with the agency or HR doesn’t get a long with the recruiter. In either case I would possibly think of working with another agency. Stay positive and absolutely move on 🙂

  206. Sini Susan
    October 14, 2011 at 12:50 pm

    Hi Dorothy,
    You have a nice article here and so many valueable comments here. I am also in a troublesome situation with no clue to figure out what is going on.

    For an overseas company I attended 4 phone-in interviews with their hiring manager, 2 senior scientists and the recruiter. After that they invited me to their location for a one day interview. The interview went well and they were all happy after the presentation. After five one-2-one interviews on that day they arranged a lab visit which was not in the initial agenda. I was also told that they will let me know the outcome in three weeks. Three days after the interview I found that the job advertisement was closed. After three weeks they sent me an email stating that they were evaluating other candidates and they “very much like to keep my application active” and would let me know as soon as the process completes. I waited for another 10 days and called the recruiter who asked me why I was in a hurry. When I told about the other two offers, he promised to call me back next day after consulting with the HM. Today he called as promised and told that I’m a second candidate and they are arranging 2 more phone in interviews, after which they will invite me again to their site if they are still interested!

    I have no idea of whats going on. It is a big multinational company. I really want this job and now it seems I don’t have much to hope for in this case. I really appreciate it if you could let me know your opinion.


    1. October 14, 2011 at 1:02 pm

      Hi Sini,
      Everything looks like it’s going as planned. Yes a little slower than you would like but you are still in the running. You let them know that you had two other offers pending and they stepped up and said that they would arrange 2 more phone interviews. Have they scheduled those interviews with you yet? Since this job is overseas you’re going to have to be patient as the decision to hire someone so far away will not be easy. You need to be professional and accommodating. Since this will take a while you’re going to need to really decide to either take one of the other two offers or wait for this process to pan out. Again, be patient and accommodating. You don’t want to come off as someone that is hard to work with just because they needed to schedule a few more interviews with you. Also, you were told that you’re the #2 candidate. You’re not the #1 candidate so bring your A game, be confident and do some more research so you can turn into their #1 candidate. Good Luck!

  207. Andrew
    October 14, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    Great article. I was browing the web to find out what more I could do to help get me this position and stumbled across this article.

    So it looks like I was involved in a “fake interview” too. I applied for a position and did’nt hear anything back from the company for 10 days so I e-mailed them to let them know that I applied and am very interesed in the position. TheBusiness Manager e-mailed me back almost immediately and set up a phone interview with the Publisher. The position was for an advertsing account executive for a local magazine. After doing research on the company I found out that the publisher was an account executive for several years, so with me thinking it was wierd at first that he was going to be interviewing me, I found that out and I guess it made a little more sense. Or did it? So he calls me for the interview and tells me that it is just a non-formal interview. That this is a chance for me to ask him about the company. So he starts off with “tell me a little bit about yourself”. So I did then he says “ok so what are the questions you have for me?” As I had several questions written down that I wanted to ask him anyway, I was not prepared for myself to be asking all the questions. I wound up asking him a lot of questions from the ones I had written down and from going off his answers. At the end of the interview he just said “ok thank you”. I asked when he was expecting to make a decision and he told me by the end of next week. I was just really confused about this whole thing. I would appreciate your feedback. Thank You.

    Also, I know a couple people that are freinds with people that work for this company. Should I ask for them to give me a recommendation to the people that work for the company?

    1. October 14, 2011 at 3:07 pm

      Hi Andrew,
      This interview sounds very odd and very much like a fake interview. I would definitely ask your friends not just to give you a recommendation but also ask them about their interview process. Maybe this type of interview is very common for this company. In any case, I think you’ll learn a lot from people who actually work there. Also, don’t forget to follow up by the end of the week. Thanks for leaving a comment 🙂

  208. Dina
    October 15, 2011 at 8:45 am

    Thanks for you site!!
    I had an interview set up through a recruiter. i thougt the interview went well. It was supposed to be with the cooridinator and PM. The PM couldnt make it so it was initially the cooridnator and myself. We discussed the position and my skillsets and how the two correlate. Soon afterwards, the hiring manager walked in to listen. He seemed pleasant as well. It appeared as if all went well. She asked me if I would be okay with filing and I told her that no task is beneath me and that if she asked me to clean a window that that would be fine too. I explianed that I dont believe I am above anything. I really kept expressing that I really liked this job abd that it felt as if it were a culmination of past job experiances rolled up in one (chemist, teacher, analyst, and business owner) and that I felt there was a mutal benefit. I told her that when the recruter was listing of job desriptions that i was really excited about this one and to dismiss the other ones. she asked what they were and I told her (analyst and 2 other lab postions). I think she may think I am over qaulified for this job and that they may have “pumped” up the job duties, but that’s okay if they did, I like the company after researching. She told me that if i didnt get the job, not to take it personally because she really liked me and thought I was sweet but they still had other people to interview. Thats when the guy that makes the decisions about who to hire said it was in the double digits. He said it was nice to meet me and I said I really hope you consider that I am well rounded and that I bring a diverse background to the table rather that just one trade and hope that provides an edge and I loook forward to hearing from them. I asked for a card and left my portfolio which includes my resume, cover letter, references, and college transcripts. I now know not to do that.
    i called my recruiter to teell him about it and he said to hold off on the thank you follow up and he would get some feed back so that I could tailor that. Well, I never heard from him today and it’s Friday. I also sent him a list of other postions with his company that I would be interested in to, but I didnt hear from him.
    Was this a fake interview? or does it seem like a real chance of sucess? Did the resruiter hear something he didnt like and decided he doesnt want to work with me anymore? What are your thoughts?

  209. Dina
    October 15, 2011 at 8:52 am

    I am sure I seemed a bit over jealous about it too!! I jsut really want this jobso badly, because it is a perfect fit out of all the ones I have looked through. I dont even know how to explain it. And, I really liked the environment.
    Thanks again Diana

    1. October 15, 2011 at 9:29 am

      Hi Dina,
      Thanks for leaving a comment and glad you like the site 🙂 From what you described I think you came off looking very desperate, which is not a good thing. Stating or even just joking that you would even clean windows if they asked you too is not appropriate. The point of an interview is not just for you to find out more about the role but to show the hiring manager that you are a confident person who has skills that are perfect for this role but also someone that is flexible and is a team player. If they do think you are overqualified for this job than you may not get hired. No company wants to hire someone in a role that might be bored. I’m sure you like this job and company very much but since you were told that ‘if you didn’t get this job not to take it personally because they really liked you’ means that you didn’t get the job. I personally think you were too excited about the role, possibly shared too much information (you didn’t need to say that you liked this job so much that you removed your application to the two other jobs),proved to be overqualified and showed them that you want this job pretty badly, which again you don’t want to do. If in the future you do apply for a role that you know you are overqualified then make sure that you edit your resume and your responses to the interview questions so you don’t look overqualified. Sorry and I hope I’m wrong.

  210. Michael
    October 16, 2011 at 2:31 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Initially, I’d like to thank you for the insight you’ve posted on the page regarding these types of situations. It is very informative – reading through many posts answered more than 65% percent of my questions. So Thought I would proceed with posting to answer the other 35%.

    I’m currently a college student and young working professional. I have sufficient management and technical experience in the industry for which I’m pursuing (or growing, rather) a career in(and relatively accomplished in my career path for my age). I recently had pursuits and job interests with three companies in my industry: the first I was contacted by a recruiting firm(hired by the company seeking candidates) who found my resume on a job-site, the second two I applied for.

    The first company was an out of state company, clear across the country who – despite being in school currently – was highly interested in me for my experience, combined with current education. I conducted a phone interview with the Director of HR, and Manager of the department I would be working for, as well as an additional departmental manager briefly within the call. The interview was a success, as no more than 30 minutes later the HR Director called me back and offered me the position – pending my passport(needed for international projects, this is a global company) and background check. A week later the background check cleared, and I was contacted by HR informing that the Director of the division I was to work for wanted to speak with me by phone, which happened later that week. The following week I received and email/call from the recruiting company whom originally found me explaining that the company was undergoing a hiring freeze, and I could expect “the call” within a week or up to one month. Nearly two months have passed with no words. Upon initial offer I was given the contact info directly to the HR Director (she was very welcoming of me, and enthusiastic to have me), but since the offer the majority of communication has gone through the recruiting company. The Last follow up I made with the recruiting firm, there was no update regarding the hiring freeze and I was asked to simply remain patient. This last point of contact was one month ago. At this point should I disregard this opportunity, or attempt to contact the HR Director for more insight?

    The Second job, I was interviewed and it went well. I experienced a long delay in follow up from them – as I was told one week. After One month I received an email from the recruiting manager indicating request for a second interview. I replied to this email the same day, giving my availability per her request. I received no response yet again. I waited one week, and contacted the company by phone, unable to reach them. Finally within three days of that I made contact and was informed the CFO decided to go in “a different direction with the position”. I assume this means the position was cut, or a different candidate was selected. Is this type of “runaround” common business practice? And also, what do you think caused this process to be dragged out? It was more or less a confusing experience, but the extensive wait helped damper any disappointment which stemmed from the turn-down.

    Finally, I recently was contacted by another company for which I applied to in July. I did not anticipate any efficient response from the company, as it is in another country (and a major and professional company within my industry). Upon contact by email a few weeks ago, they expressed strong interest in my background, and asked to schedule a Skype interview providing a specific scheduled time. I was unable to make the interview due to time constraints, and was asked/and asked if a different time would be best, which I agreed to. They indicated they would contact me shortly with details on scheduling the interview, but have not replied with a scheduled interview nor have replied to any of my emails following up with scheduling one. Did I miss my shot by not being able to make the first interview – despite their offer to reschedule it?

    Thanks for your advice!

    1. October 16, 2011 at 3:33 pm

      Hi Michael,
      I have dealt with many hiring freezes and let me tell you that they as much of a pain for the recruiters as they are for the candidates. For the first company, I would definitely touch base with the HR Director, especially if you felt that you had a good rapport with them. I would say to be patient as well but it’s been long enough and you deserve an update. For the second company, the type of runaround you experienced is fairly common when companies either are not in a rush to hire or their first candidate declines the offer and then they either decide to scrap the role or have another job absorb the role and add extra responsibilities. When it take a month to try to schedule an interview you know the company is not that keen on hiring 😉 For your final interview, I think you may have missed the shot. When your dealing with another country it’s going to be easier for them to hire someone local so if you really want that job you need to be flexible and accommodating and make the time to talk to them. Since you were not able to work around their schedule they moved on to their internal candidates and probably found one and thought that dealing with you was too much of a hassle. Sorry but that’s how it goes. They may have wanted to reschedule but the interviews when on and they probably found their candidate quicker then they thought. You just need to try to be more accommodating and when it doesn’t work out than on to the next. Thanks for leaving your comment good luck in school and job hunting 🙂

  211. eddie
    October 17, 2011 at 12:49 am

    Hi, Dorothy

    It’s my 2 nd interview with a company in 3 years. First time I wasn’t prepared. Then, I was given the opportunity the second time because I kept sending my updated work so I stayed in regular contact with the company. I was asked to come to the 2’nd interview because they saw my new work and they loved it. I had a very relaxed interview with a VP and then went back to talk to President. I was told that first they need someone with more experience and then it want be long till they hire me. What do you think about that?? Thank you…

    1. October 17, 2011 at 12:57 am

      Hi Eddie,
      The company is telling you that you need more experience. You need to work and get more experience under your belt before you can work with them. They obviously love your work but your too “green” for them.

  212. Joanie
    October 17, 2011 at 6:13 am

    Hello Dorothy,

    You must be one of the most kind and patient people on the web. THANK YOU for helping all of us work through our job search issues in this challenging economy.

    I submitted my resume 4 weeks ago for a position for which I’m pretty much a perfect fit. A recruiter called me the next day. And now I’ve had both a phone and in-person interview. The in-person interview was about a week and half ago. The recruiter got in touch with me two days later and asked for references. I sent him my references and he has contacted 3 of the 4. He called me at the end of last week and wanted to talk compensation, which we’ve already discussed before. I don’t understand why I am talking with the recruiter about these things. He doesn’t know anything about the benefits offered by the company, nor does he really care. He says he’s “trying to get me an offer,” but shouldn’t this already be with HR if the company does want me? On top of all of that confusion, he is a really unpleasant person to deal with and has really put in on a roller coaster with this opportunity. I like the company and the hiring manager, so I’m still considering the job, but I’m tired of being bullied by the recruiter and I don’t trust him even after 4 weeks of working with him. He has days were he is decent, so then I think some level of rapport has been established but then he turns around and does something else rude — like minimizing my work experience (even though it’s very respectable and I’ve done a lot of good things), cutting me off mid-sentence (and I know I don’t ramble on about things), criticizing people in my profession for being too detail-oriented, or saying that he thinks I’ll be able to get the salary I need and then saying that it’s too high.

    Can you please tell me if this is the way this is supposed to work? I’ve never had an experience with a recruiter like this. Also, can I contact the hiring manager directly? She gave me a card after the interview and I sent her a thank you email after the interview and she did respond.

    Thank you so much!

    1. October 17, 2011 at 7:01 am

      Hi Joanie,
      The recruiter sounds like a douche! Are you working with an agency? If so then I would by pass this rude recruiter and try to talk straight to the hiring manager or ask the agency if you can work with another recruiter. If this recruiter is actually part of the company that you want to work for than unfortunately you’re going to have to grin and bare it until he gives you an offer. You can go straight to the hiring manager but they will most likely tell you to go through HR meaning the rude recruiter. You also don’t want to look like a difficult person to work with when you’re not hired yet. So my point is don’t whine to the hiring manager but since she gave you her card than I would absolutely touch base with her and don’t mention how rude the recruiter is. Just be pleasant and tell her that you are really looking forward to working with her. The recruiter probably hates his job so don’t take it too personally. I would in fact kill him with kindness. Be super nice to him and don’t let any of his unpleasant remarks affect you. Remember once you are hired you almost never have to work with the recruiter again. Good Luck and not all recruiters are rude and horrible.

  213. Michael
    October 17, 2011 at 4:30 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I’m happy to have stumbled upon your site. It’s great to see that you are actively involved and I am curious about what you think of my situation. I felt like I was blindsided today when I was very confident in getting notice about a position. It all started a couple Fridays ago when I received a call from a recruiter regarding a position I applied for the week prior. It was an informal phone interview where I put in my best effort to sell my skill sets and experiences. The recruiter was very positive and set up a phone interview with a manager. The next Monday we spoke. I felt I did a wonderful job “selling” myself over the phone and was offered the opportunity to come in for an interview with him and two people I would be working under. I received an email form the manager and recruiter confirming my interview for that Thursday. The recruiter even requested I give her a call after the interview had concluded.

    As far as I was concerned, I felt I had the perfect interview with the manager and his associates. They all had a chance to look over my resume and were impressed with my experiences, goals, and fit towards the organization.

    A few hours after the interview, I contacted the recruiter as requested and she was extremely excited for me and let me know she had spoken with the manager. I was told that I was at the top of the short list and I should be hearing back on Tuesday. Last Tuesday I did not receive correspondence and figured that they needed a little more time to make their necessarily preparations. I ended up not hearing back last week at all and started to become worried. I figured that if I didn’t hear anything by Friday, I would call the recruiter by this Monday afternoon.

    I received a shocking email stating “Although, we were certainly impressed with your skill and personality; we have made a decision to bring on a candidate who has experience that closely mirrors our business model.” I became extreme distraught after reading this message due to the fact that I was told I was a great fit for the organization and its needs. I decided to call the recruiter for my own personal and professional growth to see where I was lacking in comparison to the candidates that were ultimately selected for the position. Since there was not an answer, I left a brief message.

    A little under and hour later I received an email from the recruiter stating this (I took out the specifics, but the meaning is still intact):

    “Thank you for taking the time to reach out to me. I apologize that we were not able to speak by telephone. [The Manager] said that the interview went very well. That the team enjoyed meeting with you.
    Unfortunately, we had two strong candidates appear last minute that were personal referrals of the [associates you interviewed with].

    I apologize. [The Manager] had no negative feedback.”

    It appears that the only reason I didn’t get the position was because they knew they were going to hire the friends of the associates the entire time. This position was close to where I live, had a decent salary, and was closely related to my field of study. This enrages me to the point of feeling sick. I’m not the type of person that is susceptible to depression, but after countless rejections, I feel that I’ve wasted valuable time (and money) in my younger years to improve myself through means of higher education (I graduated with a master’s degree in May and at this point I am literally desperate for a job). I have done everything right and have somehow become failure itself.

    I’m not even sure what to do anymore. I thought there was a possibility of taking legal action with this last position, but I don’t believe any law has been broken.

    The recruiter wants to stay in contact/network with me, so maybe there’s the off chance that I’ll be first in line if something opens up.

    1. October 17, 2011 at 4:35 pm

      Hi Michael,
      Yup this happens all the time. “personal referrals” means your interview was supposed to be a fake interview but you made their lives a living hell. What I mean is that they probably always knew that they were going to hire this “friend” of the associates but they had to post and interview for the job to show that they at least tried to look at other candidates. They probably in a million years never thought that they would find you and picking the other person over you must have been a very hard decision.
      A quick side, when I applied for Winter Olympic Games I made it to the final two candidates but at the end got passed up. They wanted to stay in contact with me and even though I was devastated. A few months later I was asked to come in again to interview for a similar job and this time they hired me. I found out later that I was only passed up on my first interview because they hired a referral from another associate. This is exactly like your case. So yes, I completely understand that you’re mad but absolutely stay in touch with them as they were telling the truth that they loved you and I’m sure they want you on their team the minute another role opens up. Nepotism and “personal referrals” suck when your not chosen but that’s how the game is played and that’s how networking works. Thanks for leaving a comment and stay positive and confident!

  214. Dan
    October 17, 2011 at 4:57 pm

    Hey Dorothy,

    So I went on an interview about a week and a half ago, they told me they would make a decision by this week (17th). It is a small company, the interview went well, and the VP gave me a call a couple days after the interview to follow up and see if I had any additional questions.

    Today, I received an email from the company recruiter, stating that no final decision has been made, but that they are still interviewing candidates. They also had asked to keep them informed if I had any leads on any other jobs (keep in mind, this is not a headhunter, just the HR person from the company). I asked when they expect to make a decision by, but received no response.

    I thought I had a good shot, since I had spoke with the VP, but after I received this email I am not sure what to think.

    Am I a backup, since they are still conducting interviews? Do you think they are stringing me along until they can find someone better?

    What do you think?

    1. October 17, 2011 at 6:16 pm

      Hi Dan,
      Looks like you are not their #1 candidate but they still want you to stick around in case either their #1 candidate declines the offer or they won’t find the perfect candidate they are looking for and then will settle with someone else….you. They want to know if you are interviewing for other jobs because it gives them an idea of how long they can hold off and look for someone else. I definitely think they are stringing you along until they find someone better but you never know they may come back and offer you the job. Be patient, make sure that you sent your thank you notes and definitely keep applying to other jobs. Good Luck!

  215. Nikki
    October 18, 2011 at 6:31 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    Hope all is well and Thank you for responding back. This is the wildest thing I ever heard and experienced. From my last entry I stated I didn’t get the job. On Friday my agency left me a voice mail stating that she still hasn’t heard from them and its hard trying to connect. Well I called her on Monday to get a better understanding of the vm. She stated that they had went with the person that vacated the spot in the first place. The person wanted the job back. So that decide to go with the previous employee. That was the reason why it too so long. So my agency said they will continue to look for me. Couple hours passed and agency called back stating the previous employee didn’t workout and job is back out there and they are still considering me for the position BUT its on hold due to budget. So couple of weeks or months? Can’t tell. Can you give me so insight on this?

    1. October 18, 2011 at 8:25 am

      Hi Nikki,
      This is crazy! What kind of company hires a person back after they quit and then fires them because it’s not working out. So Crazy!!!! I think since the first experience of recruiting for that role was a gong show that they will wait a little while before considering to hire again. I’m glad they are still considering you for the position and because of this I would send an email to the hiring manager and let them know that the agency let you know what happened and that you are still very interested in this role. Remind them that you are in fact perfect for this job and have all the requirements that they want. Win them over Nikki and hopefully this role won’t be on hold for too long. GOOD LUCK!!!

  216. Becky
    October 19, 2011 at 11:39 am


    Hey! I subscribed to your website and it’s great and I think the fact that you take so much time to respond and work with people is wonderful!

    I wanted to ask you another question if you don’t mind. I had posted earlier that I was going to a second interview with the HR Manager, the CEO, the VP and the Controller. I went yesterday and the HR manager (who would be my direct boss if I’m hired) took me to lunch. I think that the interview went well and I know that I didn’t completely bomb anything (at least I think I didn’t!). She told me at lunch that they were going to make their decision yesterday afternoon before the CEO leaves for Europe and that they would let me know something by Friday. She said that it was between me and one other person and we both have our strengths and weaknesses. She never mentioned salary or benefits so that kind of makes me feel like they are going to go with the other candidate. She also asked me how the job market was and if I had seen a lot of other HR jobs out there and if my current supervisor knew that I was looking for a job. I told her that my supervisor didn’t know but that I was fine with them contacting her if they needed to check my references. Was that her polite way of letting me know I didn’t get the job?
    I went straight home and sent out all of my thank you emails asap since they were making the decision yesterday afternoon so I at least attempted to follow-up properly. Thanks for any input! I really really appreciate it.

    1. October 19, 2011 at 11:46 am

      Hi Becky,
      My short answer is no I don’t think she was just being polite when she asked about the job market and if your current supervisor knew that you were looking for a job. It’s just recruiter small talk. I honestly think you did the best that you could. Once you found out that the job was between you and one other candidate I hope that your thank you notes were not your normal generic notes and it were spruced up a bit to hopefully nail the point that you are the best candidate. My fingers are crossed for you.

  217. Sammy
    October 19, 2011 at 11:53 am

    I believe I had a fake interview this morning it was just the recruiter,she give me the job description to read I did not know that there would be so much of admin duties as stated when I apply and when I question it. She was like you sock me here because it states on the outline and u had a first interview so y r u so surprise??I tried to answer but I dont think it was good enough…she said u will hear from me in 1-2 days also told me goodluck??? do u think I have a chance of getting this job??

    1. October 19, 2011 at 12:00 pm

      Hi Sammy,
      I don’t think you had a fake interview I think you might not have been well prepared for the interview. Yes it was just with the recruiter but it sounds like you blew it if you were shocked about the admin duties that were on the job description. You should never be shocked at a job description. Even if you are shocked play that you are not and then just ask the recruiter, at the end of the interview, if you could keep that job description print out. This was not your first interview so I’m not sure why anything on the job description should shock you. Sorry but I don’t think you have a good chance of getting the job but I hope I’m wrong.

  218. Lizzie
    October 19, 2011 at 12:33 pm

    Dear Dorothy,
    I applied for a part time journalism position with a company several months ago and was invited to interview. I prepared properly and felt it went well.
    When I did not receive feedback I followed up with the employer to let them know that I was still very interested in the position. They told me I had been unsuccessful on this occasion as there was little room for future development within the role and they felt I would be frustrated very quickly.
    Since then the company has readvertised the same position (only full time), adding that previous applicants need not reapply.
    I was very confident and enthusiastic about the job when I originally went to interview. Is this feedback likely to be true or do you think it’s more likely there was an issue with my writing test or question answers? I’m just curious as I feel being ‘too ambitious’ is an odd reason to disregard someone for a job.
    I have been rejected for many roles now, (often after a second interview), which I accept because journalism is such a competitive field. However, I find it more difficult to swallow when my application is rejected on such strange grounds. Do you think the employer was being truthful in feedback?
    I’d be very grateful for any advice!

    1. October 19, 2011 at 1:18 pm

      Hi Lizzie,
      I would have to say it depends on how you came across in your interview. Some people like to show that they are ready for more responsibility and want to move up quickly in the company. This isn’t a great thing sometimes as hiring managers want a person to be happy with the current opening that they have. They want it to be a challenge and they want the person to grow into the role and then after a few years or maybe months can apply to other more senior roles. The point is sometimes candidates forget to sell them selves for the particular role that they are interviewing for and not the dream role that they hope to move into in that company. I think being “over ambitious” can kick you in the butt sometimes so maybe tone it down and try to get the first job offer before thinking about promotions. They may have also just wanted a paper pusher who would be happy in that role and not strive for anything better. You showed them that you want more and maybe they will think of you for future roles.

  219. Unlucky boy
    October 19, 2011 at 2:45 pm

    Hello Dorothy:

    Its me Unlucky dude again. Lately, i have shared my interview experience with you. My current situation is: I have recieved an email from HR stating that i am the finalist for the position. Please click on the link below and complete your background check form, Once done let the Hr know through email. I have already done so like last week Monday. After that i haven’t heard from any one in HR. I have emailed the HR lady twice. She is not replying me. What should i do. I am worried, should i call her. Please advise. Thank-you

    1. October 19, 2011 at 3:46 pm

      Hi again Unlucky boy,
      Well first of all I would not have emailed her twice since last Monday. What did you say in your emails? You don’t want to be annoying and there is a fine line from being persistent and being annoying. I would wait a few more days and then call her. I know being patient is really hard to do but it’s sometimes the best thing. I’m glad you’re one of the finalists for the position and I hope you get the job.

  220. Emily
    October 19, 2011 at 6:40 pm

    Hi Dorothy- I would love to get your input on my current situation at hand. Last Thursday I had my second interview for my dream job. I asked on Thursday when they were hoping to make a decision and they said the next day. I sent my thank you emails the following day, the email I sent to the HR manager I asked for her to confirm for me if they would be letting me know either way if I was selected. I hadnt heard anything back from any of them so I wrote the HR manager yet another email today asking about the current status of the hiring decision. She emailed me right back saying that she was happy to recieve my email as they were just reviewing everything. She then said that her and the lady that would be my boss if I got the job would like to Skype with me tomorrow at 1 (they both live in different states). No other information was given as to what they wanted to talk about. Now I am driving myself crazy trying to figure out what this means. I would hope the reason they want to skype isnt so they can see how sad I look when they tell me I wasn’t hired, so I am hoping it is a good thing. What is your opinion? Do you think they want to make me an offer, or should i be preparing for more them to ask more interview questions? Any insight would be much much apperciated! thanks!

    1. October 19, 2011 at 7:10 pm

      Hi Emily,
      I don’t think they want to Skype with you just to let you know via video that you didn’t get the job. I do think this is still an interview so be prepared. Is this the first time you’re meeting your potential boss? Have your resume in front of you and do some research on your potential boss. Pretty much prepare for anything. She probably wants to meet you to see if she can actually work with you. You know what I mean if she can see herself working with you 9-5 for the next 365 + days. So be pleasant, exude confidence, be happy, and most off all don’t be nervous. I know that might be hard but this is your dream job and you made it this far so you don’t worry because you got this!
      Stay confident and just try to make a connection with your future boss. Good Luck!!

  221. Emily
    October 19, 2011 at 8:22 pm

    Thanks for the quick response Dorothy! This isn’t my first time meeting with my potential boss though. The interview that I had last Thursday was at the site of my where my office would be if I did get the job, and she was actually the only one that I got to meet in person. The two other people that were included in the interview that day (the HR rep and another that has the same position I am applying for ) , I interviewed with over Skype. The interview was around 3 hours and a lot was covered. If they are planning to ask me further questions I am at a loss of what else it would be, besides hopefully- do you want the job :). I was just wondering what was the norm for employers making job offers, don’t they usually just call? I just can’t figure out why they would want to skype considering they have both already seen me. Any insight?

    1. October 19, 2011 at 8:51 pm

      Hi Emily,
      I have only made a few job offers in person and only because the start date was very quick and I needed the person to sign the contract right there and then. So I don’t think she wants to offer you the job over Skype but it wouldn’t be the first so again prepare for anything 🙂 Maybe they want to clarify something or maybe since they feel that they know your skills and abilities that they want to pitch you an idea for the role, a change or more responsibility and they want your input. Honestly I don’t know but I do know that It’s a good thing and that you just need to stay confident and you’ll be fine. Also, maybe next time since the request was done via email you could reply by asking how you can prepare for this interview and what you can expect. I know it’s too late now but a good point for future interviews. Good Luck Emily and I hope they do offer you the job over Skype 🙂

  222. Emily
    October 19, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    Thanks I will let you know tomorrow in case anyone else reading this ever gets into the same situation!

  223. Lizzie
    October 20, 2011 at 6:02 am

    Thanks for the response! Great site.

  224. Becky
    October 20, 2011 at 10:09 am


    I posted yesterday about a 2nd interview that I had on Tuesday. I sent my thank you emails the same day b/c the HR Manager told me that they were going to make their decision on Tuesday afternoon and let me know what the decision was by Friday. I was thinking about sending another email just thanking her again for the opportunity but I’m kind of afraid that I might sound desperate. I’ve got a job but I would really like the one I applied for…is it a bad decision to send another email to her (she would be my direct boss if hired)? Thanks.

    1. October 20, 2011 at 10:46 am

      Hi Becky,
      Have they asked for your references? If so, have you asked your references if they have been contacted? I’m just wondering. Did you send individual thank you emails? and if so, were they sort of generic and professional. What I’m trying to get at is yes I think it’s ok if you send another email, even though I think they already made their minds on who to hire, but I would try to send a less formal email. Do you think you developed a bond with this future boss? Do you have anything in common with her? I would thank her again for her time and blah blah blah but try to make this email a little more unique, something that can set you apart from the other candidate. If you feel that you can’t do that then I would not send another email. Showing patients and restraint is also a good thing and I would pick that over someone who may look desperate. I know this waiting game is brutal but it’s going to be over soon. My fingers are still crossed 🙂

  225. Becky
    October 20, 2011 at 11:30 am

    Thanks so much for the comment. She had called one of my references before the 2nd interview and I’m not sure if she’s contacted anyone since. I just sent a very carefully worded 2nd thank you email that thanked her again for the chance to inteview and for lunch and I wished her luck on finding someone for another position that she told me that she was having a difficult time recruiting for down in FL. I did my very best not to sound desperate or pushy 🙂 Again, thanks so much for you feedback. It’s very kind of you and I do appreciate it!

  226. Hannah
    October 20, 2011 at 4:57 pm

    Hi Dorothy,
    I’m still having a lot of trouble landing a job and now that I’ve been unemployed for a few months, I’m getting scared.

    Last week, I sent my resume to a cool office admin position. The job had just been posted so I was very excited when they called and wanted me in for an interview the following day. She even mentioned how impressed with my cover letter she was, and so on.

    The interview lasted only 5-10 minutes, and yes, I’m certain I won’t be selected. I could tell right from the hand shake she wasn’t feeling me.
    I’ve always thought I was a great interviewee – positive, professional, confident. I feel like you’re an inside scoop into what recruiters really think, and driving myself bananas worrying if my appearance is deterring interviewers. How much weight do suppose is placed on looks?
    I’m taller than most men and modeled a few years ago when I came over to Canada too. Typically I spend 3 hours before hand doing my hair, makeup, etc. ..Too much? The sour interview last week is racking my brain, and I’m in need a steady income soon.

    1. October 20, 2011 at 7:51 pm

      Hi Hannah,
      Interviews are tricky because you are being judged on everything; the way you look, the way to speak, your skills and experiences. You need to remember that recruiters not only know a lot about the job and what the hiring manager wants but they also know the work environment and the culture of the company/department. Recruiters don’t want to hire someone who looks ready for a beauty pageant. It’s not good for the office environment either. You should go to an interview looking like you would if you were going to work. Not to much make-up, not to much perfume and showing no cleavage or wearing short skirts. The key to is to sort of look average. You’re not auditioning for a musical so don’t pack on the make-up. Most recruiters seem to be women and you know how caddy women can be 😉 I don’t know about you but 3 hours for hair and make up for a job interview is certainly too much for me. Remember your trying to get the job and not win a beauty contest. It really shouldn’t matter what you look like but it unfortunately does.

  227. Barb
    October 21, 2011 at 12:07 am

    Hi Dorothy –

    I have a question about hiring etiquette. I am currently employed. A colleague of mine wants to retire and sent me the posting for her position. This is a Director position and the company has been looking for her replacement for quite some time. I saw the advertisements but did not consider applying.

    Well, she convinced me to go in for an interview to “explore” the opportunity. I did so and was interviewed by the CFO of the company who contacted me immediately, and directly. After this first interview I was asked if I wanted to proceed to the second phase of the interview process. I wasn’t sure, and after about 5 days struggling over it I thought I had nothing to lose by moving forward. So two days later I was meeting with the COO and the CFO. Right afterward I was interviewed by someone who would eventually be my direct report. I felt like I interviewed very well and came out feeling very confident.

    Three weeks passed and I heard nothing. Today I received a “form” letter from the HR department saying that of course I am aware that several candidates were interviewed for the position (this is a lie), that they would hold on to my resume for 3 months and wished me luck on my job search (of course I wasn’t looking).

    So, my question is – for the more senior management level hires, especially one as unique as this, wouldn’t a phone call be more appropriate? Isn’t a form letter tacky and unprofessional?

    Thanks. I feel insulted and wonder why I put so much energy into this in the first place.

    1. October 21, 2011 at 7:26 am

      Hi Barb,
      I’m glad you “explored’ the opportunity but the thing with internal applicants is that HR normally has to interview them. Buy interviewing you they want to show you and other employees that promotions are available at your company and even if they knew all along that you were not a fit for the role they know that you learned something about the interview process, which is exactly true and great experience for you. Since your company has been looking for a replacement for quite some time now they are being pretty particular. If your friend thought you would be a good replacement she should have recommended you in the beginning of the recruitment process. By showing interest so late in the game it makes you look less confident and frankly for a Director role they want someone excited for the job. You never really wanted the job in the first place since you did not consider applying until your friend brought it up. I’m sorry that you got excited for the role but you also need to be treated like any other candidate hence the “form’ letter. Yes it may seem tacky and unprofessional but they probably just want to make sure that every candidate was treated equally throughout the process. I would not feel insulted. Act like a professional and follow-up and ask for feedback. This is a unique role and you have the opportunity to learn what you did wrong and what you can improve. You went through all the stages of the interview so you can feel a little more confident that if you apply for another Director level role (inside/outside your company) that you will be better prepared and might have an edge on other candidates. Hope that helps and again think of this as good experience.

  228. Barb
    October 21, 2011 at 4:40 pm

    Hi Dorothy – Thanks for the response. Just to clarify – I was an external candidate and did not work for the company I applied to. The reason I did not apply when I first saw the ad is because my experience is slightly different from what they advertised for, and I wasn’t sure they would consider me. I made that clear in the first interview, and the CFO still asked me to come for a second interview.

  229. Hannah
    October 21, 2011 at 5:24 pm

    You are so helpful. Thank you. Reading this site makes me feel like the interviewer isn’t someone to decide my fate but a friendly person who is looking out for the best fit.

  230. Jackie
    October 22, 2011 at 10:45 am

    Hi Dorothy:

    I went for an interview on Oct 14th with the hiring VP and the HR Manager and the interview went well (at least I think that it did). The interview lasted an hour and they talked about the compensation, went through the company benefits , and made a joke about me starting the following Monday. At the end of the interview they talked about their process. They indicated that they may have another interview late the following week (around Oct 21), then a discussion between the two regarding the availability of the CEO (the hiring VP seemed to think that he wasn’t going to be available). The hiring manager did make the comment that he wanted to get an offer out by October 25.
    I haven’t heard anything back from the HR manager and would have expected them to call for my references if I was the preferred candidate. Should I email the HR manager and ask them for an update? It feels like I didn’t get this job. Thanks.

    1. October 22, 2011 at 11:30 am

      Hi Jackie,
      It seems very odd to go through compensation and benefits and joke with you about starting on Monday when they haven’t asked for your references. Either they don’t know what they are doing and are unorganized or they really want you to meet with the CEO but they have not been available. I would absolutely email them and state that it was a pleasure to meet them blah blah blah and remind them that they had mentioned that they may want to schedule another interview with you to meet with the CEO and if that’s something they would still like to do then you would definitely be available. I would also attach a list of your references. Hopefully this kicks starts the process again and you receive a reply stating they either went with another candidate or that they would love to schedule another interview with you. Hope that helps and good luck!

  231. Brittany
    October 22, 2011 at 3:45 pm

    What if they ask say “Tell me about yourself” and “More than likely you’ll hear back from us” does that mean anything positive?

    1. October 22, 2011 at 4:07 pm

      Hi Brittany,
      Thanks for leaving a comment and check out my post on “How To Answer The Interview Question Tell Me About Yourself”. Yes I would think when you hear that you will likely hear back from a potential employer after a job interview that this is a positive thing. Remember to follow-up with a Thank you note and maybe next time try to get a timeline so you’re not waiting for weeks and weeks.

  232. Sonja
    October 23, 2011 at 8:17 pm

    I had an interview last week and was asked a question that I answered (long story short she explained why my approach to something wouldn’t work) and the conversation rolled on… I now have an alternate answer to her question. Would it be too forward or over the top to e-mail her with the solution? The interviewers had told me that I should e-mail with any questions. I have already sent the thank you e-mails. The position is to be decided on by Friday. Thanks.

    1. October 24, 2011 at 7:43 am

      Hi Sonja,
      Do not email her with another answer you thought of a few days after the interview. You get one chance to make a first impression. Keep in mind there isn’t a really wrong answer to most interview questions. Recruiters and hiring managers want to see how you got to the answer you did even if it wasn’t the way they would have approached it. The interviewers told you that you should email them if you have any questions not if you thought of any better answers to the interview questions. I’m sure you did fine so don’t over think it. You sent your thank you notes, which is great. Now unfortunately you have to wait. Did they ask for your references? Be patient and Good Luck!

  233. Sonja
    October 24, 2011 at 12:05 pm

    Arrgghh! I so want this job! The waiting game stinks! lol They did ask for the references up front. Honestly, they asked for a lot up front. I even had to order and pay for a criminal record check ( organization that works with children) and have the certificate stating No Records Found with me.

    Thanks for answering me… I guess I’ll just have to save this bit for when I get the job.

  234. JobMan
    October 24, 2011 at 2:55 pm

    What exactly does “target hire” mean?


    1. October 24, 2011 at 5:06 pm

      Hi JobMan,
      A target hire is a person that the company knows they want to hire (could be a family member, friend, a co-worker referral etc.) but they have to post the job to make it look fair for everyone. They will go through the motions and set up some interviews but knowing all along that they are going to hire their “target hire” at the end.

  235. xta N
    October 24, 2011 at 7:41 pm

    I had an interview which i felt went well as I had a really good rapport with the interviewer. I was told i will be contacted within 2weeks but did not get a reponse until 1month( that was after I sent a follow-up enquiry letter, to know my status). I did not get the job, but the recruiter said He enjoyed talking with me and was very impressed with my overall knowledge . This is my dream company and I feel I am very qualified. The opening was for a new entry,no experience required, but I have 4 years experience. I should mention here that a week after my interview , I got a call from the same company ,requesting another interview for a the same position but this time it required experience. But I told the guy, that I had already had an interview with the company , earlier. Do you think it is right for me to keep to tell the first recruiter that interviewed me about this and ask her if my file can be passes on, and also is it okay if I keeo in constant touch with the recruiter in case there is another opening.

    1. October 24, 2011 at 9:53 pm

      Hi xta N,
      Of course it’s fine to keep in touch with the original recruiter in case there are other openings but I would caution against asking the recruiter to pass along your file to another recruiter. Even though you think you did well doesn’t really mean that you did well. The hiring manager or that particular recruiter may not have liked you and was only being nice. When you get invited to an interview by the same company but by a different recruiter you need to treat this interview like your first. I would not mention that you were interviewed before unless they ask. Most HR departments use a software system that shows if a candidate has been interviewed before so they should already know. Take this opportunity to make another first impression. You normally never get a second chance to make a first impression but if your invited to meet with a new recruiter and new hiring manager than here is your second chance. I know most people hate interviews and it would be ideal just to pass along a file with all your information on it but the thing about interviews is that people need to meet you face-to-face. As a candidate you need to show flexibility and be accommodating so when you’re invited to another interview with a company that is supposedly your “dream company to work with” than you need to show enthusiasm and jump for joy that you have been invited to an interview.

  236. JobMan
    October 25, 2011 at 3:53 pm

    Thank you for the explanation! So basically the same thing as say, Nepotism?

    Also I recently had a job interview where it was probably the most encouraging job interview I have ever had. Her and I got along great, she said I was highly qualifed and at the top of the list for choosing and she even used terms like “Don’t worry, once you start you will pick that aspect up quite quickly, I can tell.”

    Does that sound like at that time she wanted to hire me with phrasing like that? I was SURE I was going to get the job. Then I get a call a few days later with nothing more than a simple “Sorry that job has been filled.”

    Thanks again.

    1. October 25, 2011 at 5:16 pm

      Hi JobMan,
      It sounds like the recruiter did absolutely like you but again a target hire reveals themselves at the last minute. Keep in mind that recruiters are usually the last people to find out that there is a target hire so this is why I believe the recruiter was being genuine but had no choice but to hire someone else. I would definitely keep in touch with that recruiter if you want to work for that company because if another role comes up they will think of you if you’re still interested and if there isn’t another target hire 😉 Good Luck!

  237. Justonce
    October 26, 2011 at 1:01 pm

    I was very excited when called for an interview for a position that almost seemed tailored to my experience (almost too good to be true). During the interview the managers explained how this was a new position and they were still deciding what responsibilities the position would entail.

    I was asked numerous questions that I had never in over 20 years been asked. I started to sense then that this really was a fake interview.

    At the end the HR manager said they would be making the decision by the end of the following week. The other manager shook my hand and stated that he wished me luck in my employment search.

    I sent a thank you letter and called after 2 weeks to be professional, even though I knew I was not getting an offer. HR said they were still sorting out the position and I should hear from them by the end of that week.

    A month later and they never contacted me.

    Fake interviews are an insult to me as I consider everyones time extremely valuable. Honesty on everyones part is ALWAYS the correct choice.

    1. October 26, 2011 at 1:17 pm

      Hi Justonce,
      Thanks for your comment and sorry to hear about your interview process. I agree that honesty is the best way to go. In your example I don’t like that the position in question was still being developed. This company clearly wasted everyone’s time. They interviewed people who thought they were applying for a certain role when in fact the company was still deciding on the positions responsibilities. It’s like trying to hit a moving target. They should have contacted you within the two weeks and just told you that they closed the role because they couldn’t decide on what the role actually was but thank you very much for your interest and time.

  238. JobMan
    October 26, 2011 at 3:16 pm

    Awesome, thanks Dorothy!

  239. Melanie
    October 26, 2011 at 3:39 pm

    So I have learned, in my years going from contract to contract, that it’s not what you know but sometimes who you know that’s important when seeking a job. I am from a small city so this is very true here. Anyway, I have had coffee with some people in my professional network letting them know I am looking (I am currently working but contract up in a couple of months). One of these coffee dates, which was actually a few months ago now, may have lead to something because this person runs a company and had one of his department heads call me about a position that will be opening up. I met with her and she gave me a start date and filled me in on details of the position. That sounds great! However, first they have to get approval from their board to hire with out going through the official process. If they have to open it up, I will still apply and hope for the best of course. But after reading on here about fake interviews could this have been one of those? Like could they actually know the board will make them go public and they were just being polite meeting with me?

    1. October 26, 2011 at 3:57 pm

      Hi Melanie,
      I don’t think this was a fake interview. I think they honestly want you to come on board but of course they need to dot their I’s and cross all their T’s first. Even if they have to post the job it looks like you are the “target hire” so you won’t have anything to worry about. Just stay confident and I’m sure this will work out for you and if it doesn’t it looks like you know how to network so you will be fine 🙂 Good Luck!

  240. Jeff
    October 26, 2011 at 6:28 pm

    Hi Dorothy
    I just wanted to thank you for all of your insight on the interview process.I took the info i got of this and use it in a interview i had today and i got a better job than i went in for.I made sure to follow all the steps & the recruiter said that i exceeded his expectations for the interview.Thank you so much!

    1. October 26, 2011 at 6:31 pm

      CONGRATULATIONS JEFF!!! Thank you so much for leaving this amazing note. I’m really glad my articles and responses to peoples comments helped you better prepare for your interview. I wish you all the best in your new job 🙂

  241. Danielle
    October 26, 2011 at 6:36 pm

    Hi, Dorothy.

    I am so happy to have come across your article. I interviewed with a large government sponsored company over the past few weeks. Specifically, I had a writing assessment (passed) a panel interview (passed) another writing sample submission (more like a project) and then, finally, a one-on-one with the director of marketing. That final interview was two weeks ago tomorrow. I felt so delighted after each interview, particularly the last as we had wonderful rapport and he even commented on how I should not go interviewing with the competitor ( which I received as a compliment =) I sent thank you emails, he responded within minutes and wished me luck. I waited until last Friday and emailed HR when I had not received word. I “politely” asked for an idea of the time-frame for the decision process. No reply, nothing! I cannot help but to be upset as I really “felt” I had the job. Now, as the days go by I am becoming a little pessimistic, what do you think? And thank you in advance for your advice 😉

    1. October 26, 2011 at 7:05 pm

      Hi Danielle,
      If you haven’t heard from HR yet I would sent another follow-up email to the hiring manager who you sent the thank you note. I would ‘politely’ ask them if they have an update for you as you have not heard from HR. Did they ask for your references? I’m not sure why they are taking this long to get back to you especially since they told you not to go interviewing with the competitors but be patient. With all the interviews you went through I’m sure the decision on hiring the right person isn’t going to be easy. Good Luck and again be patient even thought I know that’s hard 😉

  242. Jobs
    October 26, 2011 at 7:42 pm

    Hi Dorothy!

    I completely agree wtih your article and I was wondering if you might take a look at this. I am graduating in a month and have went on 5 interviews. So far, no luck. Since I don’t have the “looks” I am trying to highlight my skills in the process. However, I am also a very shy person and cannot hold conversations well.

    I am interview for State positions and not private companies. They did not ask for my references, (it was on my application already), but I did sign a waiver saying they can call them. When I got home, I noticed that my reference numbers were wrong. I called them and gave them the right numbers. I told them one person was on vacation and won’t be back in a few days. They said that’s fine because on the day my reference was back on vacation was the last day to make decisions. They have to make a decision on the end of that day, so I was fine. And the day after would be fingerprinting because it was going to be a fast-paced hire. That led me to believe they would call them.

    I found out there were 2 schedules interview days. I took the earlier day and the other day was the day they were supposed to make a decision. I was wondering if people took the interview the last day, they won’t have time to check references if they have to make a decision at the end of the day, correct? But I was wondering if I took the earlier interview, if they would forget me by now. It’s the end of the day and I still haven’t received a call, but I am not sure if they are calling everyone on that day or the day of the fingerprinting.

    Sorry for being so vague but I want to keep this as anonymous as possible. Any thoughts? Thank you!

    1. October 26, 2011 at 8:14 pm

      Hi Jobs,
      Many recruiters say they want the decision made by a certain date but many times we cannot control that. Since they had 2 interview days I don’t think they would make a decision until all the interviews and reference were checked. Did you send a thank you note? This follow-up is how they don’t forget about you. If they don’t hear from you then they will think you’re not interested or you accepted another role. Have your references been checked? If not then I would not hold my breath. I hope I’m wrong and wish you all the best and next time make sure you proof read your resume and reference contact information 😉

  243. Simon
    October 27, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I’m glad I ran into this blog. It made me feel a little better with my current scenario:

    About a month ago, I applied for a company that seem real interesting and immediately got a response from a really nice recruiter and quickly gained an opportunity to speak with the hiring manager. The 1st interview turned out great. About a week later, I emailed the recruiter for any updates. The recruiter quickly responded saying “you were the first to be interviewed for this position and we’re still interviewing other potential candidates. However, the hiring manager really likes you so you might be hearing something real soon”. And not even an hour later I got called in for the 2nd interview.

    2nd interview went (yet again) really well. The next step was to take a test to demonstrate my skills as the final interview process (which I thought I’ve done great). But sure enough, a few days later I got a call from the recruiter letting me know that their leaning more towards the other final candidate. However, they admitted that it was a extremely tough decision.

    Slightly discouraged, I was ready to throw in the towel but the recruiter keeps telling me to stick around for there might be some other opportunity for me and also the fact that they still need to run a reference check for the other candidate. In other words, nothing’s for sure as of yet…. even if it’s been over a week since my rejection.

    Just recently, I found an another open position within the same company that is relatively the same position I originally applied for – just in a different department I’m assuming. I emailed the recruiter, notifying that I’ve applied for the new opening but haven’t heard anything back yet.

    What do you think I should expect next? Why are they still keeping me around even though the position I originally applied for is already in the process of being filled? I wonder what the process is going to be like if I’ve become considered for the new opening position? Would I have to go through the whole interviewing cycle again? I’m curious on hearing your thoughts. Thanks for your help.

    1. October 27, 2011 at 7:57 pm

      Hi Simon,
      If you haven’t heard from them yet I think that they might have offered the original role to the other candidate but they have to accept and they are probably still waiting for that. If the candidate declines then you would be up next and this is why you didn’t receive a response from your email re: the new other similar position that you applied to. I think if they were being honest and you are one of the top candidates they will consider you for the other role but you might have to still interview as it maybe with a different hiring manager. You obviously wouldn’t have to do the tests again. Did you send a thank you note? Hope you hear from them soon.

  244. Danielle
    October 27, 2011 at 10:57 pm

    So glad you posted this! I went on a couple of these before I realized what was going on. From now on, if it sounds, or looks suspicious, I don’t go.

    1. October 27, 2011 at 11:00 pm

      Hi Danielle,
      Keep in mind that attending fake interviews is a good experience. You can learn more about yourself and how you can improve your interview skills.

  245. Nick
    October 28, 2011 at 6:20 am

    Hi Dorothy!
    I have a question.
    There is an agency recruiter who found my CV on LinkedIn, she called me on the phone and said my experience looked interesting and that she was recruting for two similar positions that match my work experience very well. She never specified the exact job titles or disclosed names of companies (which I did not expect anyway) and therefore did not get me too interested. She then said she would call me again if something came up. Since then she has called me four more times giving me the same eyewash about positions that are coming up soon and for which I am a good fit and constantly asking me whether I have found a job already and how many interviews I have next week. What does this all mean? Is it a scam? I would appeciate your insight.

    1. October 28, 2011 at 6:30 am

      Hi Nick,
      This recruiter sounds weird. Next time she calls or if you have her contact information tell her that if when she actually has a job opportunity open and is prepared to invite you to an interview then to contact you. Be polite but make sure that you’re clear that you don’t want your time to be wasted, which is what’s happening.

  246. Premala
    October 28, 2011 at 11:18 am

    I was recently offered a job subject to reference. I was waiting for nearly 2 weeks and at the end the employers withdrew the offer on the grounds that they didn’t get the required reference. I know for a fact, when I left my last job, I was only given an agreed reference and they are not allowed to deviate from the agreement. I wonder, if I have the right to ask to see the reference and see what questions the employers wanted the answers for.

    1. October 28, 2011 at 12:38 pm

      Hi Premala,
      You can ask but they probably will not give it to you. If you’re curious about your references you can try to hire a company to check them for you so you can see what they are saying.

  247. Simon
    October 28, 2011 at 6:39 pm

    Thank you so much for the response, Dorothy!

    And yes, I’ve managed to do my homework. I’ve done my research about the company (history, products, events, culture, etc) and delivered thank-you notes after both interviews; which, by the way, were perhaps one of the best interviews that I’ve ever done.

    Sure enough, I recently got a response from my recruiter to let me know that they forwarded my resume to another recruiter that is in charge with the new opening position. It almost sounds as though that they feel that I’m a great fit for their company and are unwilling to give up on me just yet. So let’s just see what happens from here on out!

    Thanks again for your response 🙂

  248. George
    October 28, 2011 at 9:09 pm

    Hi Dorothy!

    I just got offered a job after a 3 part interview process that took place over a period of a month! I’m really happy and just signed the contracts the other day. It’s nice to not have to spend hours searching for vacancies online!

    My question now is, do you have any tips for actually starting that new job? Dos and donts for the first few days? Managing office politics?

    Thanks! 🙂


    1. October 28, 2011 at 9:32 pm

      Hi George,
      Recruiters and companies do not want to you fail so they will usually have some kind of training session for you. I would just suggest that you listen, be friendly and try not to get involved with office politics. Do your job well and stay away from negative people. Good Luck and congratulations on the new job!!

  249. Nikolas
    October 28, 2011 at 10:23 pm

    Hello! Interesting article. I recently went to an interview where they didn’t ask questions from the beginning. In fact, all I was told was the duties I were to perform and if I had any questions. Now, as I have never been to an interview, I am highly confused on wether or not I got the job. The last thing he said was he had more interviews and he’d call tuesday after the interviews are over. I was early and as attentive as I could be considering how nervous I was… I hope this was just an irregular interview.

    1. October 28, 2011 at 10:41 pm

      Hi Nikolas,
      Every company has their own way of dealing with job interviews and this one obviously put a lot of emphasis on the questions you prepared, your appearance and your communication skills. Did you send a thank you note? It all comes down to the questions you had and how nervous you seemed. Sometimes you do get a good idea if you did well or not with just your gut feeling. Did you feel you had a connection with the interviewer? Did you see if they were impressed with some of the questions you asked? I wish you all the best and hope you do hear from them on Tuesday. Good luck.

  250. Nick
    October 29, 2011 at 4:01 am

    Hi Dorothy! Thanks for your comment on the “weird” recruiter chasing me on the phone. Would you think that she can be hired to do a check on me? But what could be the reason? I am not paranoid but she keeps pestering me and it is annoying.

  251. Nick
    October 29, 2011 at 4:22 am

    Hi again Dorothy! I also need your take on another situation if you don’t mind.
    I went to an interview at an exhibition company that organizes eduation and language-related business events. It is a sales position. The fact is that I have a unique combination of an education/linguistic and a sales background plus a rare combination of languages they are looking for and they would not easily find another candidate like me. They did not find me, I applied myself. What is somewhat weird is that the interview was organized by the Head of Logistics!! Although the Sales Director was present and he did the actual talking and interviewing while the logistics lady just sat there. And no sign of HR. I figure they may not have a recruiter at all since the company is relatively small and I couldn’t find any HR contacts on their website. The interview went very well although I had a feeling I had more valuable experience then the Sales Director himself (he is more or less my age). Moreover, I have a PhD. in Linguistics and none of them does although they emphasized the fact that they need someone with a degree which I thought was unnecessary for this position (Sr. Sales Manager). At the end of the interview they said to each other “When is she traveling to Africa? Oh, I guess next week and she’s staying there for another week”. I never found out who that “she” was but I asked when I would get feedback and they said in two weeks. The two weeks waiting period was supposed to be associated with the “she” and her trip to Africa ad far as I infer. I wrote them a thank you note and again stressed the fact that I had exactly the combination of experience and expertise they require. The deadline is next Wednesday and I am curious. Was that a fake interview?

    1. October 29, 2011 at 6:56 am

      Hi Nick,
      In re: to the ‘weird’ recruiter, I don’t see what kind of check she would be doing on you since she’s not really asking you too much info. I would honestly just thank her for her time but that you are no longer interested in hearing from her unless she has an actual job and interview scheduled for you. She’s just wasting your time right now and I wouldn’t think to much of it. I just don’t think she’s a good recruiter. In re: to your interview with an exhibition company, some small companies do not have a proper HR department so if that’s the case for this company it’s nothing to worry about it. I don’t know why people are so a scared to ask the interviewers what they are referring to when it comes to vague comments such as “when is she traveling to Africa?’ etc. If they are talking in front of you you have every right to ask what it’s about. I think it’s actually very rude to have their own conversation without letting you in on what they are talking about since you’re right in front of them. You could phrase it as, ‘Oh did you want me to come back to meet another member of the team because I would definitely make myself available when ‘she’ is town’. This is when they would then let you know who this mystery women is and it shows that you’re a good listener and accommodating as well. I don’t know for sure if this was a fake interview but a lot can happen in two weeks so make sure you follow up before the two weeks and remind them that you are still very interested in the job and working for the company if you are.

  252. Abe
    October 29, 2011 at 8:24 pm

    Hi Dorothy,
    I recently participated in a group interview. The interview went okay, not great, but not bad either. I was planning on sending a thank you email later that day, but 2 hours after the interview ended one of the interviewers asked for an electronic copy of my CV. I sent my CV along with the thank you email and in response she told me that she would be forwarding my CV to HR. She also mentioned that they might call me to ask some questions and that she didn’t want me to say that she has already interviewed me. She sent this from her work email, so I’m assuming that her company can see what she wrote and knows that I was already interviewed. I’m a little confused and don’t know if I should follow what she says when asked about being interviewed or if I should tell the truth. If I do end up getting the job she will be my boss, so I don’t want to start out on the wrong foot with her. What do you think is best and why would she not want me to say anything?

    Also, if you have any tips about standing out in a group interview I would really appreciate them. Thank you!

    1. October 29, 2011 at 10:02 pm

      Hi Abe,
      There is a difference between a group interview and a ‘normal’ interview ( includes recruiter, hiring manager and candidate) and she probably just wants you to make sure that if asked that you are clear that you have not been properly interviewed meaning only been part of a group interview setting. A group interview can sometimes be compared to a phone interview/screen. It’s where a company can easily screen out the people they don’t want. In re: to standing out in a group interview, I would say just be enthusiastic, maintain eye contact, try to answer all the questions before the other candidates and always try to get some one on one time with the interviewer. Good Luck!

  253. Mike
    October 30, 2011 at 10:51 pm

    Hey Dorothy,
    About a month ago I had an interview with a company, and it went really well. After talking to the recruiter and finished interviewing with her, she called HR and the regional manager. They both came in and we had a great chat and asked me more questions, and seemed very interested. So in the same day I talked to three people and everything went great. I followed up with Thank you letters, and I received a reply from the regional manager. GREAT!!!
    A week late they called me back to do skill tests, and I did well.
    Recently I called the recruiter to check on the status of my application, and the recruiter informed me that I made it to the last two. So there is only me and another candidate for this job. She also asked me whether I was employed. hmmm (any reason for that question)
    It is already more than a week for after the last phone call and have not received anything from them, email, or a phone call.
    What do you think is going on?
    Thanks Dorothy

    1. October 31, 2011 at 9:24 am

      Hi Mike,
      The decision to hire between two good candidates is very difficult. They probably wanted to know if you were employed because that tells them whether you can start right away or if you need to give notice. Did they ask for your references? I think they have either offered the role to the other candidate and are waiting for them to accept for decline or they are in the process of checking references and you will probably hear from them today (Monday). If you don’t hear from them today I would contact them tomorrow (Tuesday) and ask for another update. Hope this works out for you.

  254. Andrew
    October 31, 2011 at 11:53 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    Here is my situation in a nutshell. Went in for a 4 hour interview a week ago on Monday, went great, sent followed up emails to all 7 people I met with. Received a email response from the HR person right away asking if she could call me to “debrief.” We spoke on the phone the next day, and she essentially said “Everyone loved you, do you have a specific timeline on a start date, etc. She then said “I would probably go ahead and start thinking about some references you could give us as well.” However, she didn’t “officially” request them, and said they were still going through the process (likely more interviews?) but that she would be in touch soon, most likely. This was Wednesday afternoon, and it is now the following Monday. Should I continue to sit tight, should I voluntarily send her my references if I don’t hear back by say Tuesday or Wednesday? Thoughts on this situation would be appreciated!

    1. October 31, 2011 at 12:20 pm

      Hi Andrew,
      “Still going through the process” just means that they still had to go ahead and interview candidates that were already scheduled to come in. Even if they think “you’re the one” they have to finish the process. If I were you I would email your contact and ask them two things 1. For an update 2. See if they want your references. You should see by either their hesitation or enthusiasm for your references whether you have a chance of getting the job. I think if you just email them your references you may not get a response back, which just means more waiting. I think you still have a good chance so I would contact them tomorrow (Tuesday). Good Luck!

  255. Mike
    October 31, 2011 at 8:47 pm

    Thanks for your reply Dorothy,
    I called my references today and it seems no one got contacted.
    I don’t know whether i should just give up on this position or i still have a chance. lol

    1. October 31, 2011 at 9:31 pm

      Hi Mike,
      This isn’t looking good for you. I would think they would have checked references already. Try contacting them for an update tomorrow. I don’t want to say give up but you haven’t heard from them and none of your references were contacted 🙁

  256. Raquel
    November 1, 2011 at 9:54 am

    I’ve been corresponding with Dorothy via private emails regarding my job search. Thanks for all your good advice Dorothy! I did get a job offer for a part-time, just 2 shifts per week, which of course I will accept. I’ll also continue to interview hoping to supplement those 2 days with additional employment. I’m happy to just get my foot in the door with the one company, hopefully 2, and then whichever one of the two realizes my values quicker and I can advance more quickly at, then they win – that’s how I look at it. And that’s what keeps my attitude up.

    1. November 1, 2011 at 10:18 am

      That’s great news Raquel 🙂 Congratulations!!!!!

  257. Danielle
    November 1, 2011 at 1:02 pm

    Thanks for your advice! I appreciate it 🙂

  258. Mike
    November 1, 2011 at 4:19 pm


    I called for an update today,
    It seems that the big boss was on vacation and that’s the reason why they “haven’t done anything” yet.
    So i guess applications get tossed on a shelf sometimes until someone is back from his/her vacation.
    Do you think that’s unprofessional? or Normal. lol
    So, so far i sent thank you letters, and called twice.
    Do you think that i just need to sit down and wait? or call back again later ( i don’t want to sound desperate or be annoying).

    1. November 1, 2011 at 4:31 pm

      Hi Mike,
      As a recruiter I would have at least updated the top few candidates to let them know that the boss was on vacation and the process will take a little longer then expected. When is the boss returning on vacation? When do they expect to make a decision? I cannot believe how some companies treat their candidates. I wouldn’t be surprised if they bring some people back in for another interview because the process was so long 😉 I think you did everything right so I guess now you have to be patient and wait. I wouldn’t call them back just yet as that would look desperate and annoying. Just be patient and hopefully they call soon 🙂

  259. Mike
    November 1, 2011 at 5:38 pm

    Hi Dorothy,
    It’s sad. It really is.
    I honestly wanted to just laugh when i heard, “The manager just came from his vacation today.”
    What is this, lol
    Today is obviously his first day after coming back from his vacation. I think the last thing on his mind would be to worry about hiring anybody given the fact that when you go on vacation for some time, you have more stuff to catch up with.
    So in reality I’m expecting a rejection or a job offer from them in 2025.
    Like you said ” the process was so long.” I doubt he even remembers who he interviewed. LOL
    What’s going on in corporate America these days. 🙂

  260. Soraya
    November 1, 2011 at 6:20 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I’m totally confused and hoping you can help. It’s actually a position my husband is going for. He got a call from the HR recruiter about 60 days ago after they found his resume online for a position out of state. It’s a good job opportunity and they pay for relocation etc. He went through like 7 phone interviews (no joke) with HR, potential boss, another executive, and potential co-workers. They even did a video interview/skype. Two weeks ago they decided to fly him out to the office and he spent two days there. They gave him one day to tour the city so he can see if he even wants to live there and then did in-person interviews the next day for what took almost 8 hours of his time (crazy huh?). They even sent him all the benefit pkg info and the contact info to the relocation Realtor they use so we can contact her to discuss finding a place. They seem to have a unique culture there as its a very private and small company with a small team. It seems like everyone is involved in the hiring process. Well he said it went well and they told him they would contact him the following week after they all meet to discuss how he did (he also took tests as well). Then HR told him last week that the meeting they were suppose to have was postponed until yesterday because of scheduling conflicts and she would get back to him afterward to discuss next steps. That was yesterday and we still havent heard back. This has been a long process and started about 2 months ago. He has done a LOT of interviews (more than I’ve ever seen or heard of). I find it very odd that if they weren’t interested they would keep him in the loop and string him along and not just send a rejection letter. You would think they would have to tell him the results especially when he went so far in the process and they spent money on sending him out etc. What do you think? Should we give up hope entirely and move on or wait to the end of the week? Do you think they’re still not sure on whether they want to hire him? *Another side note- they did tell him that there were 400 applicants and he was one of four people they were looking at but before he flew back they told him he was their top candidate and they ruled out the other 4 people, meaning he was the only one left….?

    1. November 1, 2011 at 6:33 pm

      Hi Soraya,
      Like you said, your husband and the company have put in a lot of time in this process and I’m sure that especially if they told him that he was their top candidate that they will contact him soon. Yes I think they maybe a little unsure of hiring him. Hiring a person and especially a person who will be relocating for the job is a hard decision. I’m sure they are thinking of the pros and cons of relocating someone or hiring someone local. I’m sure this was a very unique interview process and your husband learned a lot but right now I think he needs to be patient. I don’t think you should give up hope just yet.

  261. Soraya
    November 1, 2011 at 6:43 pm

    Thanks Dorothy. I will let him know! I think he contacted the HR lady and left her a voicemail. She has been really responsive throughout the process so I’m sure she will get back to him. It’s just so hard waiting! But I agree patience is in order.

    1. November 1, 2011 at 7:48 pm

      Hi Soraya,
      I think many people would agree that waiting is the hardest part of the recruitment process 😉

  262. Dale
    November 2, 2011 at 1:27 am

    Hi Drorthy,
    I am “in between jobs” presently. I recently resigned my post after twenty-one years in an effort for another position with more growth that does’nt cap your wages. I had planned to lateral into another position which didnt pan. I am discouraged by the lack of any interest in the job market. I spent two week shotgunning my resume out there through the various job search engines. Now Iam more targeted and I have customised my resume to fit each position. I ‘ve even lowered my salary requirements for those applications that ask. I feel that age discrimination has affected some (48yrs young) and lack of a degree others. The sixty million dollar question is: What am I doing wrong not to get interviews in an industry that I have substancial experience and good references?

    1. November 2, 2011 at 2:11 am

      Hi Dale,
      I don’t have to tell you that quitting your job before you have another job lined up is not a smart move especially in these times. The job market is tough. What I think you should consider is that your resume may need an update. After 21 years of being employed your resume maybe looking a little outdated. Shotgunning your resume to various search engines doesn’t always work. Many companies stay away from big job boards because thousands of people send in their resumes and almost apply to every job not really even looking if they are qualified or not plus a recruiter does not want to review hundreds of applicants for each job they post. Age discrimination is a factor to consider (but 48 is still young :)) and that’s why you need to make sure that your resume is written well without blatantly showing off your age. Also, using keywords is very important. Many companies use software to screen through resumes and they target specific words. Have you tried networking? I hope you didn’t burn any bridges by quitting. Try contacting old co-workers and let them know that you are looking for a job. The more people you tell the better chance you have of getting word of a job that may not even be posted. I would be happy to critique your resume if you like. You can check out my services page for more information.

  263. marcy
    November 2, 2011 at 3:33 am

    I have been looking for a job for 2 & 1/2yrs. After 30yrs my office closed, I had to take an early retirement (I was lucky in that way, others were not so lucky). Since I’m still under Government rule age to have my money I am only allowed a certain amount a month and that amount is much less than poverty wage (but at least i’m blessed with that, others are not). I still need to work, I’m a single mom with 3 kids, 2 have asthma and a congenital heart defect. (needs operation she is schedule for the 1st of the year). I have had my share of phone, face, group, 2nd and panel interviews and nothing. I have experience, knowledge & skill. What I lack is youth, looks and time.
    1. Had passed all the interviews and tests, met w/the director and he started to show me around the office, this took a couple of hours and he said his HR would call when to come in to negotiate my salary and what date to start. so I asked if I got the job and he said well, lets just say I have one more interview to do but i haven’t and don’t intend on showing all this to any of the other candidates, so I thought that meant i got the job. I was so excited, i went home and wrote the thank you email to everyone(not saying i got the job) but thanking them for their time. The next day the HR calls and says that there has been a change and she really felt bad but that the position I was suppose to get had not gotten approved by the committee. She said that the person that had this position was leaving so they were trying to fill it before she left, when they submitted my name and paper work the committee said that they were not approving another hire and that dept had to do with what they had. Needless to say I was crushed…the thing is that I didn’t even apply for that position. I had applied for an entry level rep. position because there wasn’t anything else that I felt I could apply for with that company. This Comapny is a major medical center system in a major metro area and i want/need to work. Their HR called me and ask if i was interested in this position because it wasn’t listed yet but they were in the process of it and they saw my resume and wanted me, so they came to me and I felt good because I was starting to doubt myself. Or is this just another way of saying no we don’t want you.
    2. This other company I applied for is hard to get into unless you know somebody and I don’t but I still try…the phone interview went well and she said that she was going to refer me to a face to face interview but it won’t be for a couple of weeks. So this week is the 3rd week, this past Friday she called and left message for me to call her that she wanted to speak with me. I missed her call but I called her about 30 min later and left her a voicemail, I emailed her also apologizing for missing her call, this was 3:30p. she didn’t return my call. I went to my son football game and with all the noise I didn’t hear the phone, she called at 7:30p (I never expected a call that late). Monday I called got another voicemail and left her message. It is now Wednesday and she has yet to return my call. SHOULD I call or email her again or just wait and what would I say this time. This one has me puzzled.
    3. I also applied for an operator switchboard for a retail company and different companies as well and they all turn me down, I don’t even get a phone interview. (the company i worked for 30yrs was a telephone company and my 1st job was an operator, I managed operators and customer reps) I have indicated i will take entry level, and still nothing. WHY is this?
    I just want to work and make a living (like 1/2 of America)

    1. November 2, 2011 at 4:49 am

      Hi Marcy,
      The important thing to remember is not to look desperate. You have 30 years of experience and asking for an entry level job isn’t the way to do it. Whatever role you are applying to i.e. switchboard operator, office admin, customer services etc. you need to make sure that you show that you have 30 years of related experience but your passion is in customer service or office admin etc. Don’t show that you’re desperate and just need a job show that you love what you do and want to continue to provide excellent services. In regards to the three scenarios, 1. Even though the role was not approved they liked you and when something does come up I’m sure they will think of you again. Don’t burn that bridge and try to build a relationship so they will feel comfortable to reach out to you again. 2. You’re playing phone tag, I hate this game as a recruiter but sometimes you have no choice but to play it. I would definitely call her again (she may have moved on to another candidate by now but it’s worth a try) but next time make sure that you have your phone on vibrate because 7:30pm may be late for you but not late for the recruiter. 3. If you applied for a switchboard operator but you haven’t done that kind of work in 30 years means that they were probably looking for someone with more recent experience. Again try not to state that you will take entry level or any job they have because companies aren’t looking for people who just need a job they are looking for people who not only can do the job but want to do the job. To set yourself apart from 1/2 of America that is looking for work you need show how your skills are relevant to the jobs you’re applying to and that you love what you do and you need to prove it with your cover letter and resume. Hope that helps and good luck.

  264. Ashley Lewis
    November 2, 2011 at 9:13 am

    Hello Dorothy, this is superb advice and thanks. I had an interview October,19 and I thought it went pretty good however I have not heard a word since except for when I called the manager, the guy who interviewed me and the recruiter. The manager told me to contact the recruiter the the recruiter said as of now I am not on the list but she still had three more classes to go to and she asked me to be patient. The guy who interviewed me said he does not know where I would fit in. Please explain so I can move forward

    1. November 2, 2011 at 9:27 am

      Hi Ashley,
      Did they ask for your references? If they don’t know where you would fit in then I would guess they don’t see you as a fit in the company. Maybe you need more experience but whatever it is your not their top choice so I would not hold your breath and definitely keep applying to other jobs.

  265. Andrew
    November 2, 2011 at 9:51 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    Great news, I got the job! They mentioned they are going to be sending me a hard copy of the offer and other information today. Here is my question….They asked me during my interview what my current salary was and the range I was looking for….I realize now I should have kept this more confidential, but I stated the range of my current position and that I was hoping to be 3k-10k more than that. Well, in my research (a website called glass door), I found the exact position with the company at a range of roughly 20-30k higher than what I had indicated….how should I proceed here, considering I expect them to give an offer in the range I indicated, but there is evidence the average salary is much higher?

    1. November 2, 2011 at 11:09 am

      In regards to salary negotiations I would be very careful. First I would wait and see what they offer you. You maybe surprised. Now, since you already told them that you expect to get between 3K-10K more than your current salary if you turn around and ask for 20K-30K more they may withdraw the offer. One of the decision to hire you may have been your salary requirements. If you ask for too much more they might pass on you and go with candidate B. So I would wait to see what they offer you and then ask for up to 10K increase but you need to justify it with your years of experience, what you bring to the team etc. not just that you did some research, even though you should point that out as well. Keep in mind they may just say that times are tough and they no longer have the budget to provide the salaries you found in your research. At the end of the day you need to negotiate something that you will be happy with and try not to take the original offer. Good Luck!!!

  266. sydney
    November 2, 2011 at 2:27 pm

    First and foremost, I have to say that you are by far one of the most amazing human beings that I’ve encountered over here on this inter-web. Many thanks for your kindness.

    It is obvious that you receive a vast amount of correspondence, so I will try to keep mine brief- & I thank you in advance for taking the time to read my post.

    I’ve been reading up on your articles & blogs that pertain to “fake interviews” and the whole “dangling of carrots” ..and I’m curious to hear your thoughts/opinion on my circumstance.

    On Oct 7th, a Recruiting Manager from a pretty good sized (600+) company contacted me & asked that I come in to meet with her. About a week later I came in and interviewed with her (the RM) as well as the Director of the department that oversaw the position I was a candidate for. The two interviews were separate -I’m assuming I was being screened first by the RM, in which I “passed”.. and then sent over to the Director.

    The next day, I followed up with thank you correspondence- in which I received a reply stating “..the director and I really enjoyed meeting with you and I’m looking into having you come back and meet with some of the other folks.” Four days after that, I received a phone call & was set to meet with 5 different managers/directors (individually)

    The interviews went great- in my opinion. One of the interviewers blatantly came out and said that he felt I was a great candidate and that he was going to recommend me for the position. After about a week of not hearing anything back, I decided to send the RM a second follow-up email, again thanking her and the others for their time etc & I also left a voicemail (two days after I sent that email)

    On Nov 1st- a day after I left the voicemail, I received the following email/reply:

    “thank you for reaching out to me and your call yesterday. everyone here really enjoyed meeting with you and thought you could be a great addition to the team. with that said, we are holding on bringing anyone new on until we finish with a few pitches we are in the middle of at this time. as soon as i know more i’ll make sure to reach out to you right away. i am hoping it is in the next few weeks. in the meantime, feel free to reach out to me with any questions or concerns you might need answered.”

    so I guess my question is… did i just get the carrot??!! -it kinda seems that way ..yes?

  267. sydney
    November 2, 2011 at 2:27 pm

    wow- that was NOT brief. my apologies!

    1. November 2, 2011 at 2:32 pm

      Hi Sydney,
      I think the RM is being very honest with you. I think you’ve been receiving some great responses and I believe them when they say that they think you would be a great addition to their team. I just think you need to be patient. They need to wrap a few things up and promised to get back to you as soon as they can. They have been more upfront and honest with you than I’ve seen a lot of companies and I don’t think it was a fake interview. Just be patient. You sent your thank you notes and now you just need to wait. I would of course still apply to other jobs while you wait just in case they come back and tell you that things have changed and they can’t hire at the moment. Try to stay positive Sydney 🙂 Good Luck!

  268. Lexi
    November 2, 2011 at 2:35 pm

    I will be graduating college soon and am hunting for a job. I recently attended an information session with a company that I met at a college career fair and that I am interested in. They held open interviews the next day on campus and after that I received a call from the HR rep, who was actually the woman that I interviewed with, saying that she shared my resume with another office within the company that is about 3 hours away and that they both feel that I fit a particular job opening. I immediately scheduled an interview with someone in the other office (as the HR rep was adamant about the interview being as soon as possible) and was just wondering what I could possibly expect at this second interview. Is this other office seriously considering me for this position, or is it just first round interviews again?

    1. November 2, 2011 at 3:20 pm

      Hi Lexi,
      Even though you were already interviewed by HR this second interview as I understand will be with a new HR team. This second interview will essentially be just like your first interview. Be prepared to answer all the common interview questions. Even though one HR person liked you doesn’t mean they all will so you need to impress everyone in the second interview as much as you did in the first interview. I hope that’s not to confusing ;). Congratulations on the interview and I hope you asked for the job description. Nothing is worse than coming to an interview unprepared. Good Luck!

  269. Jason
    November 3, 2011 at 1:47 pm

    HI Dorothy,

    I went through a screen interview, a group interview and a phone interview. I was told I am either number one or number 2 candidate by the HR recruiter. She told me there were down to three candidates (I am one of them). Later, they said they interviewed with one more internal candidate..they ended up adding her or him to the list. Then I e-mailed a follow up letter to one of the hiring managers asking for the status..he said the following” thank you for your comments that they are appreciated. We will be making a decision next week as they have completed the interviews this week. He will be out of office visiting the markets. You will hear from us late next week. Have a great weekend.” Is this a good sign or a bad sign? How likely will I get the job at this point?


    1. November 3, 2011 at 2:50 pm

      Hi Jason,
      Did they ask for your references? I don’t like that they had this late internal applicant join the interview process. Sounds like it maybe a “target hire” in disguise. I think it’s a good sign that you maybe their top candidate but I don’t like the sound of this “internal” candidate. If the internal candidate is not a “target hire” then I think you have a very good chance of getting the job. Sorry but now you just have to wait until the end of next week. I’m crossing my fingers for you 🙂

  270. Melanie
    November 3, 2011 at 2:55 pm

    Hey Dorothy!
    Just wanted to fill you in on my job search.. I have a second interview tomorrow with the company I mentioned last week. This time it’s a coffee meeting with the woman who would be my direct supervisor. Are coffee shop interviews common these days? This is the second one I have had with this organization… Should I be concerned because they aren’t meeting me in their office? I’m thinking no because I got this far because of connections (and experience) not actual interviews..

    1. November 3, 2011 at 4:21 pm

      Hi Melanie,
      I agree with you, I would not be concerned because you got this far with the help of some connections and the fact that you have been interviewed by this company before. I think they want to put formality aside and just speak with you candidly. This is where a hiring manager really tries to get to know you and see if she really does like you enough to want to work with you. Just be yourself but come prepared. Do some research on the interviewer and see what you have in common. Good luck Melanie!!

  271. G
    November 3, 2011 at 4:53 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Just wanted to give you a brief update on my interview etc. I finally got the verbal offer and I am about to discuss with HR the terms etc. I was wondering if you had any suggestions on how to discuss things with HR or any tips on negotiating salary, bonuses etc. I’ve never done this before so any advice would be greatly appreciated.


    1. November 3, 2011 at 5:03 pm

      Hi G,
      Congratulations on the job offer! I would suggest you read my post called “Small Interview Mistakes That Can Cost You Thousands Of Dollars” . The most important thing to remember is to not feel rushed. Listen to their offer, ask them to email you the version of the offer so you can read it thoroughly and then tell them you will get back to them. After you read the offer over you need to decide what you want. More vacation time, bonus, more salary, flex time etc. Then write it all down and when it comes to negotiations you need to tell the company why you think you are worth more money/vacation/bonus etc. You need to explain it with your level of experience and skills that you bring to the table. Hope that helps. Good Luck!

  272. Priya
    November 4, 2011 at 10:44 am

    Hi Dorothy,

    I had a Face-to-Face interview yesterday. I had cleared the written test last week and got a call for face-to-face. I was interviewed by the Team Leader . The interview was purely technical and then he told me that they usually get back the candidate for an interview with the Manager but in my case he said let me check if the Manager is around and can interview you right now. The Manager was available and interviewed me for about 20 minutes and at the end of the interview told me about the project and asked me if I was interested to work on that project. He also mentioned that he was very flexible with office hours and that I would do 7 to 4 or 8 to 5, if I want to go home early and take care kids or whatever. It gives me some hope that the manager told me about the project and the office hours. How do you think my Interview went. Is it Normal for Mangers to ask if you’re interested in the project and mention the work timings?

    1. November 4, 2011 at 11:13 am

      Hi Priya,
      I think it’s great that the manager was available right away to speak with you. What is the next step? Did you ask when you expect to hear from them? When you get comments like that you definitely start to think and hope that they will offer you the job. Yes, I think it is normal for managers to ask if you’re interested in the projects they would like you to work on and mention the work ours as well. I hope you get the job! Make sure you sent a thank you letter 🙂

  273. Raquel
    November 4, 2011 at 12:31 pm

    Hello everyone, and good wishes. I’m still in the Orientation process so won’t actually start for another 10 days or so, but I just wanted to add a small variable into the mix of unknowns in this market. Although I was not asked, and in fact refused my list of references, I was hired anyway by this company! Other companies may be doing the same thing, and the reason for that is that they’d save money by doing the background checks and calling references after they’ve made a ‘conditional’ job offer – rather than calling references and doing background checks on every person they interview. While them not asking for the list of references does add to the stress of waiting, I wouldn’t necessarily assume you’re out of the running if that’s the case. Most times maybe, but it’s a possibility I just want to contribute because of my case. Good luck job hunting everyone. Raquel

    1. November 4, 2011 at 12:36 pm

      Thank you so much for leaving this comment Raquel. It’s a very good point. I do hear a few companies give conditional offers and then check references but not to many. I agree that if they don’t ask for your references ( before they offer) it definitely adds stress to the process.

  274. Brad
    November 4, 2011 at 3:49 pm

    I had an interview with the city for a technology job. I have been to two interviews and both interviews went very well. They seemed excited and eager to get someone hired. They told me 2 and a half weeks ago that they would like to have someone in the position ready to work in 4 weeks and would call me back in 1-2 weeks. Well with the city they are of course dragging their feet, and I ended up doing a follow up call to the guy i interviewed with and left him a voicemail (wednesday), today (friday) i received a call back and he informed me that they are interviewing more candidates. I am going to go a head and consider this one a loss since they obviously did not find me qualified for the job and have decided to interview more candidates(which they said they have not even scheduled the interviews with the new candidates yet). Why don’t they just tell me “No” you did not get the job? Its like an girlfriend who you know doesn’t like you anymore but she just won’t say it…. It is so frustrating.

    1. November 4, 2011 at 3:55 pm

      Hi Brad,
      Thanks for the comment and yes the interview/recruitment process can be so frustrating sometimes..argh! They don’t want to say that you did not get the job because they want to keep their options open. What if they don’t get any better candidates in the second round of interviews? They may wake up in the middle of the night screaming “WE SHOULD HAVE HIRED BRAD!!!!” but it’s too late because they told you no and you found another job. It’s like dangling that carrot until they find their ‘perfect’ candidate 🙁 You may like the post I wrote when I compared job interviews and dating.

  275. Aleksandra
    November 4, 2011 at 3:57 pm


    My situation is a bit weird since I come from Europe, and not only Europe but a developing country outside the European Union and with struggling economy. Anyway, during my maternity leave, I was informed that my entire department was to be made redundant and although I was used to be the Key Player and an important part of the company’s succession planing bla, bla,bla…, I was still going to get sacked (please not that this company is one of the world’s largest multinational companies). Anyway, my CV is impressive, best student at university, 6 years in this very well-known company, and immediately after I started looking for a new job (I am officially still employed), I got contacted by a head-hunter for a position that was not completely similar to my previous one (let’s say this particular field represented 20% of my regular workload). The Company (also well-known, over 1600 employees only in my country) immediately wanted me to meet the Hiring Manager i.e. HR Manager (I am specialized in HR ). After a two-hour interview (during which I found out that they were forming this new role within HR and they had been looking for 5 months now without success), I got immediate feed-back from the recruiter that the HRM was impressed, said I had great potential (??) etc and that I would meet the company recruiter soon just to do the tests as a formality. Two week later, FINALLY, I was called to do the psychological test (they were doing a group test with different candidates, I was the only candidate for my position). One week after the test, I received a text message from the head hunter that I did great and that she would call me for a final interview with whom … I do not know. And now, 5 days later … NOTHING (although the head hunter knows I have another offer pending). I understand that I probably did not get the job (obviously, they would have called me by now) but can I be 100% sure? Should I accept the other offer although it is not as good (just not to be out of work)… I apologize to everyone if my English is not very precise

    1. November 4, 2011 at 4:18 pm

      Hi Aleksandra,
      Thank you for your comment and your English is very good. I’m just assuming that this company is not in a rush to hire. They’ve been looking for 5 months and it look over two weeks to schedule your testing. I’m thinking 5 of your days is really only 1 day for them 😉 Is this other offer with the same head hunter? If not, I don’t know why they don’t follow up in your behave since they won’t get paid (finders fee) if you don’t get hired. If they are the same head hunter who found you the other offer as well then they can sit pretty and wait because at the end of the day you will pick one of the offers and they will get paid. They may even have a bigger commission with the other company and that’s why they are not intervening and trying to expedite the interview process. I would try to contact the first company and let them know that you may have another offer and would like to know where you stand. At the end of the day, I would accept the less attractive offer and then quit (it’s ok to quit during your probationary period) when and if the other better company offers you the job. The ideal situation is of course for you to get the offer you want ASAP and I hope you do. Hope that helps and good luck!

  276. Michelle
    November 4, 2011 at 5:05 pm

    Not sure if this was a *fake interview* though it may have seemed since I have read this article. I was called in for a well known staffing firm to interview for a recruiter role internally at another branch. I was told that I had a great personality and that the recruiter interviewing me the first time was very sure that I was a great match for this spot. She mentioned there was training offered for the spot and that they were very eager to fill the position. Long story short I went to the other branch. Met with the director. He stared at my resume and just kept saying “interesting” nothing else. Was so unprofessional. Then he proceeded to tell me that he wanted to be honest with me, that he was looking for a recruiter with 3 years experience. My experience is a role of a Jr. recruiter. Just need the foot in the door I was very upbeat and positive, but as soon as he said those words my face went from happy to doom and gloom. He took maybe 10 minutes of my time and said I am going to see if the Branch manager is available to speak with you. He took about another 2 minutes came in and told me she was on a conference call. He asked if I knew the way out and if I knew how to get home. Well duh I got there! Not to mention 15 minutes early. He did not walk me out nor give me a business card. He said the process of placing someone for this spot would be at least 3-4 weeks!! Meanwhile the other recruiter at the other branch said they were so *eager to hire right away*. What a line of crap. It wasted my time. I was mislead. If this was a reason for the first woman to meet her quota for the week as far as interviews go this could have been it. I was told that the branch specialized in all areas of employment. When this director stated it was strictly accounting and finance. Nothing wrong with that but again wrong information. The gentleman told me me I was in the running because he liked that I had drive. Well drive and a box of raisins does not get you very far. I just wanted to share an experience that I had with all of you. Maybe someone had the same situation I did. If anyone has any comments I’d love to read them.

    1. November 4, 2011 at 5:16 pm

      Hi Michelle,
      Maybe there was a misunderstanding between the recruiter and the Director. Maybe the recruiter thought that they would consider someone with less experience since they were “eager to hire right away” but I guess the Director didn’t agree. I’m not sure this was a fake interview because no body would want to waste a Director’s time. It sounds to me that the recruiter didn’t do their job well enough. They just submitted a candidate (you) that was not qualified and they even mislead you (or they just didn’t listen) to believe that this company handles strictly accounting and finance and not all areas. Thanks so much for leaving a comment and make sure you make a note of this somewhere so the next time you either work with this company or get invited to an interview you’ll know what to expect. Thanks again.

  277. Juliana
    November 4, 2011 at 5:49 pm


    First I had a phone interview with the recruiter, three weeks ago I had an interview with 4 interviewers including the hiring manager, then a week later I had an interview with another hiring manager. All these interviews I had great feedback. The last hiring manager that I’ve talk said that I should have an answer this week and to be very positive about it. I sent an email to the recruiter wednesday and didn’t get any reply. The day after on Thursday, I called the hiring manager and she told me that there is no other candidate that I will be the one that she will hire. The only thing that is holding back is that she needs to have all the manager sign off so she can give me a real offer. She promised to have that for me this week but I am guessing that she didn’t realized that she was talking with me on Thursday afternoon to have that done this week. What do you think?

    1. November 4, 2011 at 5:52 pm

      Hi Juliana,
      Looks like the hiring manager is going to do everything she can to get you can offer. I would just wait it out. Did you send Thank you letter to everyone? I would contact the hiring manager again on Monday but this time try to get something in writing so try an email rather than calling. Overall I think this looks good for you. Good Luck!

  278. Aleksandra
    November 4, 2011 at 5:53 pm


    Thank you very much for your prompt reply and interesting point of view. Yes, at first I thought, ” ok, this hire is not a priority ”, but now I am starting to think there must be another candidate (maybe from before, maybe also put on hold), especially because the other job offer is from another head – hunter. The biggest mystery to me is how to handle the head – hunter who is late with the feedback (just to add: he appeared very nervous after hearing about my other offer and insisted that I should give him time talk with the Hiring Manager who was away on business ). I saidthe dead-line is in 5 days, tomorrow is day 5 and still nothing (just to add that in my country calling the head-hunter or recruiter too often is considered rude and an act of desperation, please do not ask why…. 🙂 and luckily the actual dead line got pushed ahead in reality I still have a few days left :))…. Wow, I do write long posts… Sorry, there is nothing worse than an HR Specialist baffled by the interview process….. 🙂

    1. November 4, 2011 at 6:05 pm

      Hi Aleksandra,
      I don’t see what other option you have but to contact the headhunter again and ask him if he has an update for you. I understand it may look desperate but you told him that you are considering another offer so this has to be an exception to the rules. It does sound like to me that you might just have to take the first offer or you might lose both and end up with nothing. I do hope the head hunter gets back to you ASAP. Good Luck!

  279. shireen
    November 4, 2011 at 9:22 pm

    hiya dorothy

    i had a interview 2 weeks ago everything went really well , i was even shown around the place and was told about what i would have to do day to day …….they took copies of my id and everything , after the interview i was told that HR will get back to me but its been 2 weeks now and i have not heard anything. i have emailed them asking if i have been Successful or unsuccessful and they have not replied back to me , i went on to the website where i saw the job and its still posted on there . should i just give up on this job ?

    1. November 4, 2011 at 10:12 pm

      Hi Shireen,
      Maybe they show all the candidates around as part of the interview process but I don’t like that they took copies of your ID. Why did they say they needed it? When you’re told HR will get back to you make sure that you ask for a specific time line. Sometimes the recruitment process drags on for some companies so I don’t want you to lose hope just yet. I don’t like that they haven’t responded to your email so I would suggest that you call them on Monday and see what they say. At least on the phone you’ll be able to tell whether you got it or not. Good Luck!

  280. Jason
    November 7, 2011 at 2:01 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Thank you for your quick reply. They did not ask for my references. I remember that I applied for the job opening through a company website. What I did was to fill out a detailed job application online…I did not give them my SSN (when filling) ….then the recruiter called for a phone interview, has a group interview with one of the hiring managers and two senior guys there..and eventually had a phone inteview with the hiring manager’s boss…..Do you think that was a fake interview since I did not provide them my SSN and my referernces? I am having a feeling that..if I were a good fit for the position (even though I was told by two hiring managers) why did they interview with someone else? My coclusion is that the late internal applicant joined the interview process sounds like a “target hire”. if that is the case that really wasted my time and their time…..
    What do you think?


    1. November 7, 2011 at 2:29 pm

      Hi Jason,
      As I mentioned with my response to your first comment on November 3, I don’t think this was a fake interview but that they might have had a target hire that the recruiter was not aware of. I think they probably did think you were a good fit for the position but the hiring manager might be pressured to hire the internal candidate. I don’t think you wasted your time. I think everyone can learn something about themselves or the interview process when they attend interviews even fake ones.

  281. Jane
    November 7, 2011 at 5:20 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    This blog is really great! Thanks so much for writing it.

    My interview scenario seems a little different from some of the others on here. It wasn’t with a large company, but a small non-profit with four paid employees. Only one of the three people who interviewed me is on the payroll, the others volunteer their time and hold other jobs. Going in, I knew I wasn’t the most qualified for the job and was surprised, but overjoyed that I even gotten an interview because it is in the field I would most like to be in. The first half hour of the interview consisted of typical interview questions. The second half hour was more of a conversation. I worry that was a bad sign from your post, but otherwise the interview went great. I thanked my interviewers and they said they would be in touch soon. I was told they would be having a second “conversation” the next week. That week came and went and I heard nothing. I assumed I did not get the job, but then I heard from my references. Both had been contacted (1 week post interview) and both said the non-profit had been really impressed with me. I should mention, my interviewer knew both of my references personally. Two more weeks have passed and again, I’ve assumed I did not get the job, but have not officially heard one way or another. Should I hold out any hope at this point (3 weeks post interview) or were my references only contacted because the interviewer knew them, wanted to chat, and I was a common thing to chat about? I’ve continued my job search in the meantime.

    1. November 7, 2011 at 6:51 pm

      Hi Jane,
      I just want to clarify that I think when an interview flows as easily as a conversation that it’s a good thing. I think with your interview they asked you the typical interview questions and then wanted to just chat and get to know you. It doesn’t matter if it’s a big company or small or non-profit many hiring teams have no idea what they are doing. They may have said that they might have a second ‘conversation’ but things might have changed and they felt they didn’t need one. Did you send a Thank You letter? I think it’s great that they checked your references but now you need to follow up with them. Don’t let the forget about you. If you want that job you need to stay engaged and be an Active Candidate and not just sit there and wait and assume that you didn’t get the job. If the interviewer knew one of your references you should have leveraged that information. You’re references might have been contacted because they were friends but you won’t know for sure unless you ask. Hope that helps.

  282. Shanell
    November 7, 2011 at 7:02 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I just stumbled upon this blog and I LOVE it! Like many others, I have a question of my own. I interviewed for a position a few weeks ago. There were three managers in the room, and we all clicked…I felt like I had done well.

    However, the recruiter e-mailed me and said another candidate had gotten the position, but that management wanted me to apply for a re-post of the same job. Of course I immediately applied for the job that day.

    So I wanted to know what you make of that. Do you think I have a fair shot at getting the job? And will I be called back for another interview? It’s been about a week and a half since I reapplied, and I’m freaking out! I want this job SO bad!

    Thank you so much!


    1. November 7, 2011 at 7:22 pm

      Hi Shanell,
      Maybe it was a target hire that got the first job and since they really liked you they wanted you to apply for the other job so this time you have a real chance of getting it. Follow-up with the recruiter. Tell them that you re-applied and wondered what the next stage of the recruitment process would be since you have already been interviewed? When in doubt ask and stay engaged. Be an active candidate!!! Good Luck!!!

  283. muffin34
    November 7, 2011 at 7:38 pm

    Hi, I had a great interview today. I have ten years experience at the job. I even did an audition that was fabulous, and then at the end, all they said was that they would keep in touch with me. I am confused as heck about this. Any advise?

    1. November 7, 2011 at 8:32 pm

      Hi Muffin34,
      Well, either they say that they will “keep in touch” with all the candidates or they were trying to be nice and aren’t really interested in you. Did you follow up with a Thank You letter? You need to contact them and ask them for an update or ask them when they expect to make a decision. Did they ask for your references? Even if you think you did a fabulous audition you’re maybe not what they they are looking for. Remember it’s not just the answers to the interview questions but how you answer them. Companies are looking for a fit for the job and a fit with the team as well. Maybe they don’t think you’ll fit well with the team. In any case I would contact them and ask. Be an active candidate and don’t just wait around and hope for the best but think of the worst. Hope that helps.

  284. Pete
    November 7, 2011 at 8:42 pm


    I absolutely love your website! And I would love to get your opinion on an issue I am having during my job search. From 1996-2008 I owned my own small businesses and was fortunate enough to have had some great financial success as a result of those companies. However, my last venture absorbed all of the capital I had generated from my other businesses and I was forced to file for bankruptcy. In 2008 I accepted a job with a small firm that I had previous history with and really enjoyed the company and the position. Unfortunately, earlier this year the company was forced to eliminate my position and I have been on the hunt ever since. I have had several interviews with companies in a variety of industries for positions that I am extremely qualified for and the process always seems to end the same way. The interviews (phone and on-site) go great, they follow-up with my references, then I receive the ding letter/e-mail. I know you had said in a previous post that the background check companies do will show my credit history and they can’t make their decision solely on that history, but how do I explain the circumstances of my bankruptcy to them. Should I disclose the bankruptcy during my interview process? I do realize I may not be getting offers from these companies for other reasons, but something just doesn’t feel right about this. Any advice you could provide would be most appreciated.

    1. November 7, 2011 at 9:02 pm

      Hi Pete,
      One thing you can do is just be honest during the interview. When they ask you “Tell me about yourself” that’s when you can briefly explain your situation almost exactly how you explained it to me- “From 1996-2008 I owned my own small businesses and was fortunate enough to have had some great financial success as a result of those companies. However, my last venture absorbed all of the capital I had generated from my other businesses and I was forced to file for bankruptcy”. I’m sure that was a very difficult thing to get through but the most important thing is for it not to define you. Stay confident and know that you have great skills and experiences that any company would consider an asset. Once you get the bankruptcy off your chest you will see if that was the reason you weren’t getting offers or if it was something else. Please don’t let that define you and stay positive and confident of your abilities. Good Luck!!!

  285. Jason
    November 8, 2011 at 12:59 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Thanks for your comments again. I am here just to give you an update. Finally I got a call from the recruiter regarding a hiring decision. They decided to hire the candidate whom I believe is the additional candidate. The recruiter told me that there is nothing wrong with my interviews….all managers like my interviews..she said they really want to hire me (not only once)…. It is just that the candidate was used to work there…he already had the experience and had a good reference when he worked there…the recruiter also said that there is any new same opening there..I do not need to go thorugh any interviews again as they have the same managers……. I will be automatically recruited or in the pool…….. is that possible? I feel really frustrated as I spent so much time on these interviews….


    1. November 8, 2011 at 1:20 pm

      Hi Jason,
      I completely understand your frustration and I’m sorry that you didn’t get the job. Yes it is possible not to have to go through another interview if it is with the same manager but lets hope the manager doesn’t leave the company soon or if another opening doesn’t occur for more than 6 months because if it does most likely they will want to post the job and they will have forgotten who you are so they will invite you back for an interview. If I were you I would keep an eye on the job board and the minute you see a job that interests you you need to contact that recruiter and see what they can do to get you hired. Remember it’s always a good idea to make friends with the recruiter 🙂

  286. MimiNow
    November 8, 2011 at 6:57 pm

    Hello Dorothy: I recently interviewed on a Thursday with a company where I had two telephone interviews and a face-to-face that lasted almost three hours. The interview was very positive and I answered all questions as best as I could. I first interviewed with a Supervisor and a Supervisor in training. They then sent in the VP to interview me and I was told that I would be contacted by the HR department no later than Tuesday of the following week. It’s going on two weeks now and I have not heard anything. Being a former Recruiter myself, I should have guessed that I was not selected since I did not get a job offer the day that I interviewed face-to-face. I wanted to believe that their hiring process was maybe a bit different and took all the positive feedback that they would definitely get back in touch with me as promised. What disappoints me is that the company failed to keep it’s promise and getting back with me one way or the other. Maybe I need to reenter the Recruitment field and start a RIG group: Recruiters with Integrity Group! Thanks for allowing others to share there interview experiences. ~MimiNow

    1. November 8, 2011 at 7:12 pm

      Hi MimiNow,
      I’m not sure why you thought you would get a job offer on the day of your interview but I would have just followed up with HR. Did you send a Thank you letter? It sounds like you were not an active job seeker. You can’t just sit around and wait to hear from them and when they tell you no later than Tuesday then you need to follow up on Wednesday. I agree there are too many recruiters out there who do not get back to candidates even after they promised they would. It’s bad practice, rude and lazy. I hope in the future you follow up and you hear back from recruiters. Thanks for leaving a comment 🙂

  287. Jason
    November 9, 2011 at 5:32 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Hope everything is well. I forgot to ask about this when I left comments here on Nov. 8th. When I spoke with the recruiter about what I did wrong in the interview/hiring process…and asked how I can improve myself …she said there was nothing wrong with my interviews, skills, managers like me..etc…….Personally I would like to hear something bad about me so that I can improve my skills and do better in the future…Should I believe what she said?…I am afraid that she acted like a nice person to me (not good again)……Do you recommend me sending a thank you letter to one of the managers asking for a reason (even though I was not chosen)?

    Thank you so much

    1. November 9, 2011 at 5:36 pm

      Hi Jason,
      No in this case I would not bug the recruiter again or the hiring manager. You got your reason why you didn’t get chosen. They hired a past employee aka Target Hire. It had nothing to do with you or how well you did in the interview. Since they do want you on the team and told you that you don’t need to interview again for a similar job when it comes up I would believe them that you did great and they don’t have any negative feedback to give you. If you bother them about feed back you will lose your chance of getting hired with the company.

  288. Jane
    November 9, 2011 at 11:16 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Thanks for your response. I did send a Thank You the same day as my interview, but alas, it did not help. I checked-in today and was told someone else had been hired. Apparently there was nothing I could have improved, I just wasn’t the most qualified.


    1. November 9, 2011 at 11:22 pm

      Sorry to hear that Jane 🙁

  289. Sandra
    November 9, 2011 at 11:47 pm

    Hello, Dorothy,
    About a month ago, I applied for a marketing job at a health care facility. After a week or so, I e-mailed the HR lady to follow up and lo and behold, the next day, the director of marketing called me on the phone and asked if I had a few minutes to talk. I did, and it went well enough that she asked me to come in the next day and bring samples of my work. The NEXT DAY–I did not even have time make extra copies of my work samples.

    I was there on time, and per her instructions, I asked them to ring her office. No answer. Reception told me to just go down the hall and wait for her. I knocked on her closed door. Nothing. The woman in the office next door opened a break room for me and said I could wait there. A few minutes later, the manager shows up and we had a very nice interview. However, she did not want to read any of the press releases I had written, and she barely looked at my samples. She did, however, comment that my name was not on the masthead of my former co.’s newsletter as a graphic artist. My resume was sitting right in front of her–my job title was NOT graphic artist–nor was this position for a graphic artist. Made me a little suspicious. She said they’d be calling people back for 2nd interviews in the next two days. Then she offered me the use of the company’s Xerox machine to make extra copies of my samples. I figured it was a trick (i.e., will this one use company equipment for personal reasons?) so I declined. Ran home, wrote a nice thank-you letter and mailed it THAT NIGHT.
    A week went by, I called and got her voice mail, said I was interested, and had a decision been made. Yesterday I got a rejection letter. I keep wondering what went wrong. Does this sound like a fake interview to you? I mean, NOTHING went wrong in this interview–maybe it was TOO painless?
    I feel very down and discouraged and would love your opinion.

    Thanks, Dorothy. Sorry if I rambled.

    1. November 10, 2011 at 12:02 am

      Hi Sandra,
      Sometimes you really just need to go with your gut with some interviews. You said the phone interview went ‘well enough’ well in hind sight do you think the phone interview really wasn’t that great? If the phone interview didn’t go amazing than I’m not that shocked that the interview didn’t go that great either. Also the phone interview was with the director of marketing and your interview was with the manager so there could have been a disconnect or the manage was pressured into seeing you when they didn’t want to. Sounds like this company has taken a long time to try to fill this role (over a month) and maybe the director was getting desperate and when you called (showed initiative) they invited you in when really the manager is having a hard time deciding on who they want. I honestly don’t think you did anything wrong other than make sure you have extra copies of your samples at all times. I think the company/manager have been trying to fill this role for too long and really should not be inviting candidates in if they don’t know what they want. Again, I think you did the best you could and I would move on and try not to over think this one. Please stay positive and confident that your next interview will go much better. Hope that helps.

  290. Ammad
    November 10, 2011 at 9:48 am


    After a couple of phone interviews i was invited for an on-site interview. Note i progressed to the subsequent stages by following up with the assistant director of recruiting following a week after the interview. My on-site interview was with three people including the senior manager, his boss and a lady working under the senior manager. The senior manager outlined that he hires two kind of people and described how i would fit in one of those. After interviewing (last of 3 on-site interviews) with Sr. Manager’s boss i asked him when to hear back. He said that we are interviewing a pool of candidates till thanksgiving week but if you get any other offers, please let us know we might be able to expedite the process. It was not a panel interview, so he did not have any feedback from the other two interviewers yet. I am not sure what next steps to take and what to interpret of “expedite the process”. Please provide me some guidance.



    1. November 10, 2011 at 10:15 am

      Hi Ammad,
      Sounds to me like you need to send your Thank You letters and wait closer to thanksgiving week to follow up again. In the meantime definitely don’t hold your breath. If you were one of their top candidates they would have been in touch with you sooner. I think either your role is very popular and they have a lot of qualified candidates to interview or they have a few roles open and that’s why they are interviewing a lot of candidates. In any case they want you to let them know if you’re considering other offers because that will force them ‘expedite the process’ and to sit down and discuss your fit and qualifications for the job sooner so they don’t lose a potentially good candidate. I would follow up with the assistant director of recruiting, like you did before, and ask them for an update. Good Luck!

  291. Devin
    November 10, 2011 at 5:57 pm

    I have been out of work for 23 months, and need a sanity check. I was forced out of my last job because I refused to engage in unethical practices they wanted me to engage in with my customers. Part of my severance package was a strict 12 month non- compete clause and that company and I are both bound to not discuss the situation or mention any details of my seperation and the agreement. The first 12 months of looking I had very few interviews (which I attributed to the non-compete), but after my replies were still slow I had my resume professionally reworked. The professional whom I hired also provided some coaching which I thought helped but now I’m not so sure… 1) I was being overly honest about my seperation; suggestion was to explaine that it was a result of a force reduction due to the economy. 2) I was encouraged to list myself as currently working as a contractor (which I am, but I have very little work with them and it is on a pilot project and they bound me to a non-disclosure contract).

    My first problem was I listed the company by name & provided a perspective employer with the name and # of my “boss”. The HR director called me 2 days later and blew a fuse stating I am not allowed to referance the project or their name when interviewing within the industry. (Now I am offering the name of someone through the agency who staffed me in the position but prospective employers have told me they only want to speak with the company I am actually doing work for. Suggestions??)

    I feel that I am watering down the truth about these 2 situations to the point that I am feeling that I am not being honest. It seems like many interviewers are skeptical about my last job and present contract work. I have tried blunt honesty twice in interviews that I felt were headed south in a hurry & basically stated that my last employer was engaging in moral, ethical, and most likely legal violations within their business practices. I also firmly stated the name of the company I am doing work for and gave a loose description of the product I am working on for them.

    The first interviewer said he was impressed with my honesty and I progressed to interview with the VP. The second interviewer looked at me like I just confessed to a murder and quickly ended the meeting.

    Finally, my first 18 years in the industry was spent with the largest firm in the industry. Their HR policy dictates they will only validate dates of employment. After taking a buy out package from them I worked for a small company that sold themselves to an out of state firm 1.5 years after I began working there. My only other job was my most recent with 3 years 11 months but I previously explained that situation. I have great contacts within my first company who are willing to provide references for me, but since they are ignoring HR policy they understandibly want to only be contacted for a final reference. How can I get into a company that wants to contact everyone I have worked for with this mess?

    Thank you

  292. Devin
    November 10, 2011 at 6:11 pm

    Sorry for the long post, and also want to clarify my last question a bit. Many companies seem to require a lengthy application form and they always ask permission to contact the previous employers. I really don’t know what my most recent employer would say, I don’t know how to contact the prior one, and my first employer is just an 800 number.

    1. November 10, 2011 at 7:38 pm

      Hi Devin,
      This is a real mess. In regards to references, you mention that you have colleagues that are wiling to be references but they are ignoring HR policy. I would just be very honest in future applications and say that this company will only verify your employment history but you do have colleagues that will provide references and you will provide these references when you are offered a job/final stage of the interview process. in re: to the small company that sold themselves to an out of state firm I would try to find a colleague that worked with you to be your reference. Again be honest with future applications and state that this company was sold but you have a colleague or old boss that can be your reference if needed. LinkedIn is a great way to search for companies and current employees. In regards to your most recent job, I am not clear on how the agreement handled future references. I don’t see how you can work with them as a contractor but are not allowed to disclose the project or put it on your resume. It is obviously complicated and I’m sorry if I’m not being helpful but I think you just need to find out from your recent employer and that maybe just going over your agreement on how they and you are to handle references so you can actually move on. If you don’t know what your most recent employer would say if contacted for a reference the best thing to do is ask them. Hope that helps Devin and good luck.

  293. Renee
    November 10, 2011 at 9:19 pm

    Hi Dorothy,
    I think I was part of a fake interview. I met with the recruiter and the assistant manager and manager of the unit but, not the main manager. The managers were overly ecstatic to be interviewing someone with experience. At one point I thought I was interviewing them. I was given a tour and asked when can I start and to call back within the week.

    However, the recruiter said her next email would be for references. That never happened. I waited two days and called back as I was told. I spoke to the head manager who said she heard good things about me but, could not make the offer.She said the recruiter was the one I should follow up with but, that she looked forward to meeting with me. I have to say the no email for references and the head manager telling me to follow up with the recruiter was starting to make me worry. I called the recruiter they said they would get back to me. It wasn’t until the end of the next week that I got the no hire email.

    I have to say I was extremely disappointed as I was definitely qualified , having 6 years of experience in that area and felt a little led on by the managers . I guess it was the fake interview. 🙁

    1. November 10, 2011 at 9:46 pm

      Hi Renee,
      It sounds to me that there was a lack of communication between the recruiter, assistant manager and the main manager. I bet the recruiter and assistant manager did really like you and felt that you would have been a good fit but the main manager might have had someone else in mind for the role. Maybe the main manager kept everyone else in the dark so the the recruiter and other managers went forward and conducted interviews not knowing that the main manager had someone else in mind. Either way the situation does suck but you did have a good interview and if and when another role opens up I’m sure they will hope that you would be interested. I would definitely send an email to the recruiter and the managers that you met stating that you are sad to hear that you were not chosen for the role but that you really thank them for the opportunity to have interviewed with them and that you hope they think of you when another similar job opens up. I am sorry that you’re disappointed but stay positive and build a relationship with the recruiter and managers if you can 🙂 Good Luck!

  294. Simon
    November 11, 2011 at 1:48 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    It’s me, again. It’s been about a week now since I heard from my recruiter in regards to forwarding my resume to another recruiter to grant me an interview with another hiring manager. My recruiter had informed me that I’d make a great fit for the new role and they’d make sure the other recruiter will grant me another interview for the newer opening position I applied for. However, I checked on the job openings from the company’s site and it now no longer shows any sign of the position being available. I’m beginning to feel a bit confused. Is it possible that they may perhaps be jerking my chain?

    1. November 11, 2011 at 3:49 pm

      Hi Simon,
      Yes it is a possible that they are just stringing you along. I would follow up again with the recruiter again but definitely move on and apply to other roles to other companies. Don’t burn this bridge because you never know when/if this situation can turn around and work in your favor.

  295. Lachell
    November 12, 2011 at 8:58 am

    I had an interview this week and it went great the recruiter stated that she will pass my resume on to two separate properties who were looking for leasing consultants. She stated how she loved my passion and informed me to show up just as I appeared to her and not to change a thing and even informed me on tips for one of the “rigid managers” that I would interview with. I left knowing I landed the second interview. I received an email the very next day stating that I had not been selected and it’s not my skill level but more so what the company was in search of. I was extremely confused by the denial I even thought maybe they emailed the wrong person :). In your experience do you think that this was a fake interview and would it be improper to email the recruiter on asking her for tips (constructive criticism) that may help me in the future.

    1. November 12, 2011 at 11:58 am

      Hi Lachell,
      This is very strange. I’m not sure why the recruiter would state that she will pass your resume on but in the end you were not selected. Maybe the other roles that the recruiter wanted to pass your resume on to were already filled and she was not informed in time. In any case I would definitely follow up with the recruiter and not just to ask for feedback (which you should do but it sounds like she said you were perfect and even gave you some tips on how to improve) but ask her what went wrong as she stated that you were almost perfect for the role and why weren’t you selected for another interview. Very strange. Good luck.

  296. Sharon Ritchie
    November 14, 2011 at 10:22 am

    I had a phone interview with this recruiter. He saw my resume on a job board and contacted me. I sent my resume and we had our interview on Nov. 2, 2011. I had followed up on Monday, Nov. 7, 2011. Here is his response. He had told me that the company doesn’t know if they want a “senior” or “junior” admin. I think I didn’t get to Step 2 of the process. Am I right?

    We are still interviewing other candidates. We will have a candidate status for you in the next 1-2 weeks.



    Here is the job description:

    Qualified candidate will have a 3+ years administrative experience, preferably in a sales or marketing environment; Bachelor’s Degree preferred but not a must. Some experience in financial services (mutual funds) helpful but not required. Strong communication skills are a must; must be able to work well in a team environment, background in Microsoft Office suite required.


    1. November 14, 2011 at 11:45 am

      Hi Sharon,
      I think you’ve been moved to the B pile. Since they are still interviewing other candidates it sounds to me that Jason is going to wait to see if the company finds what they are looking for and if they don’t they may contact you in 1-2 weeks but I wouldn’t hold my breath. Either way I hope they contact you sooner than later.

  297. Christian
    November 14, 2011 at 12:29 pm

    Hi, I recently went on a job interview for a technical position and I thought the interview went very good. At the end of the interview the hiring manager told me that he would call or email me within a week to see if I got the postion and that he hated leaving candidates hanging. It’s been over a week and I have not heard from him. Sooo unprofessional!
    Thanks for you great website.


    1. November 14, 2011 at 12:58 pm

      Hi Christian,
      I agree that it is unprofessional not to get back to people especially in this case since the hiring manager stated the he hated leaving candidates hanging. If I were you I would still follow up. It would show that you are professional and that you care and want to know the reason you didn’t get the job so that you can at least learn something from this experience. Thanks for leaving a comment.

  298. Erica
    November 14, 2011 at 1:31 pm

    I had a weird experience today with a huge corporation…I received an e-mail from a senior client recruiting consultant and she asked me to describe my computer software experience in detail, which I did. My resume and cover letter only included the programs I had experience with. She than asked if I would be available for a telephone interview Monday at 8 a.m. She asked me introduction questions such as “Are you able to work in US? etc…When it came to the position she said “Well the minimum qualification for this position is 5 years of administrative assistant experience” My resume showed my office support experience and it entails 2 years of office support. She than asked “Do you have that qualification?” And I said no..So why would you contact me if you only see 2 years of experience? After that, she right away said well this is the end of the interview and thank you. I will hold onto your resume and keep applying for positions. You have an excellent background. I just do not understand why they even called me?

  299. Erica
    November 14, 2011 at 1:33 pm

    Oh and do I send a thank you letter for having the opportunity for an interview? I am assuming no but I could use some help on that! Thanks.

    1. November 14, 2011 at 2:15 pm

      Hi Erica,
      Wow! I can’t believe some recruiters. I understand that some companies have specific questions that they want all potential candidates to answer before they are submitted to the company. As the recruiter I would make sure (by reviewing the resume before hand so I’m not wasting my time or the candidates time) that I would know the answer to “Do you have 5 years of AA experience?” was yes or no. Maybe she was hoping you had some volunteer experience that wasn’t on your resume (which should be on your resume) that would make you qualified for the role. I honestly don’t know what she was thinking. This was only a phone screen so I would say no you do not need to send a thank you letter. Thanks for leaving a comment.

  300. Devin
    November 14, 2011 at 5:39 pm


    Thank you for your suggestions, I think they will help quite a bit. My long winded rant last week didn’t really identify my largest concern…

    How honest should I be in explaining the reason I left my last job? This is where I choke in interviews because I worry that explaining everything will back-fire, but when I (dance) around the issue my delivery and possibly credibility are less than convincing.

    Thank you again.

  301. DILI
    November 14, 2011 at 6:13 pm

    I recently concluded a three stage interview with a big company with an excellent career opportunity. My interview went well because the managers were really impressed with responses. At the end of the third stage stage of the interview they told me that they will get back to me in after one week.

    After one week no response so I decided to contact them and the human resources representative told me that they are still in the process of making offers that they will get back to me the next day. She then called the next and apologized for the delay but still it will take then another week to make final decision.

    After the second week I contacted her but she was out of the office so I ended up talking with someone else. She now told me that no conclusion has been reached yet. But after five minutes later she called me to tell me that the head of human resources said that they they will not be making offer to me at this time but I can still be checking there website for other openings. And that she did not give her any feedback on the interview.

    What do you think I should do ?

  302. Ammad
    November 14, 2011 at 7:20 pm

    Hey Dorothy,

    I sent a thank you note to each of the three interviewers and all three notes were different. During my initial phone interview they told me it’s a new practice and they are looking to expand. You mentioned that I should follow-up around thanksgiving week with the recruiter (HR). My on-site interview was on November 4 and I am thinking that a gap of 3 weeks might hamper the communication between me and the HR or the organization in general. Would you recommend me touching bases with the HR sometime this week?

    Thank you for replying to my earlier post.



  303. Sandra L.
    November 14, 2011 at 9:32 pm

    Dear Dorothy, Thanks for replying to my post.
    In retrospect, I was not clear in what I said earlier. My interviews, both telephone and in person, were with the same individual–the director of marketing. I referred to her as “the manager” at one point and I can see where that would be misleading.
    I never spoke to the HR manager at all. I merely e-mailed her to follow up on my application.
    When I said the phone interview went well enough, I was understating the fact that it went very well indeed. Both interviews went so well, I cannot understand why I didn’t get the job. Or at LEAST get called back for a 2nd interview.
    I’ll make sure I have extra copies of my work next time–the only reason I did not was I did not have time to run to Staples and make some. I thought I was being super-cooperative by agreeing to come in to see the director in fewer than 24 hours. I always wonder if it’s best to jump at the first time the interviewer suggests–even if it’s darned inconvenient for me.
    I’m still having trouble getting over this. Especially since the last interview I had prior to this one, I knew I didn’t get the job the moment the interview was over. How did I know? They wanted all the candidates to bring their Soc. Sec. cards and Driver’s Licenses. I saw them Xeroxing another candidate’s materials while I was in the waiting room. They did not even ASK me for my materials. Somehow during the interview, they must have had their minds made up. A total waste of time, I’m afraid, on my part.

    1. November 14, 2011 at 9:40 pm

      Hi Sandra,
      It’s not a good idea just to jump at the first available time that the interviewer suggests. You need to really think through if that’s a good time for you. If you can prepare properly enough so you can do your best in the interview. All I can say is stay positive and don’t rush into interviews. Take time to create a focused cover letter, really think if you want this job, if you are qualified for this job, ask what you should expect to the interview, if you need to bring anything etc. Good Luck 🙂

  304. GN
    November 15, 2011 at 1:17 am

    During my first interview I was asked to fill in the application form where there is one part I’m not comfortable writing the reason on “why I leave my last job”.
    I’m pretty sure he’ll doubt about the reason I stated there which is kinda weird (because I was “Dismissal”) I just hope he won’t bring up the question~ don’t get me wrong, It just me. I really wanna have a good fresh start in this new company. And of course in my first interview we disscuss about the competencies side of me.

    Few days ago (Thursday) I received my 2nd interviewed & we had a great conversation everything seem went well. The interview lasted 1 hour & he likes my portfolio & he’s very happy at the end of the interview and he even gave me his namecard. I confident about this. Within 2 hours, I sent him a thank you email & sms.

    …. The next day(Friday) I try to called him & said did you received my sms & email, he said he read my email & sms (but he never reply) & will disscuss with his team member whatever the reason is, he said he will get me back on next Monday….& until now(Tuesday) I’m kinda confuse what to do ? should I keep waiting for his reply ? or wait until friday to call him again ? At this point I hope he consider me ! finger cross !!!~~

    1. November 15, 2011 at 6:34 am

      Hi GN,
      Even though your interviewer gave you his business card I don’t think it’s appropriate to sms them. A thank you email is just fine. Why did you expect to get a reply after you sent the Thank you note? I have said this before but recruiters/interviewers do not have the time to reply to every thank you email they receive and they shouldn’t. You are thanking them for their time and they already thanked you at the end of the interview. The interview told you that he will get back to next Monday so you need to respect that and not send him another sms or email. I personally think you did not get the job but if I were you I wouldn’t ruin your chances and don’t contact them until next Tuesday if you don’t hear from them on Monday. Good Luck!

  305. Chris
    November 15, 2011 at 7:01 am

    I’ve had a few experiences as of late that have left me quite confused! I’ve been ready to move on from my current job for a while now so I contacted a staffing firm that places you in permanent positions. I met with my assigned recruiter and it seemed to go great, we got along well and she seemed impressed with my resume and our conversation left me with the impression that she was really invested in helping me and really experienced with matching the right candidates to the right opportunities. She got back to me within a week about a job opportunity and set up an interview. I went to the interview with the hiring manager and one of the CEO’s and I thought it was a good interview, but not a great one. Nothing bad happened but there wasn’t a great spark so when I didn’t hear back after sending my thank you note I wasn’t immediately alarmed. Now though it’s been over three weeks and since that day my recruiter hasn’t been in touch, I’ve called her office, left her a message on her cell per her offices instruction, and emailed her twice. Each email has given me a different out of the office reply which makes me think she’s legitimately busy, but after this much time it’s starting to feel like what you do to a guy who you want to leave you alone. Should I leave her alone? Not hearing back from them was one thing but not hearing from her that they said no or yes or anything about future opportunities is freaking me out. The interview wasn’t bad, certainly not bad enough to warrant banishing me from representation.

    Since then I continued my search on my own and last week had a great phone interview with a CEO of a small company. By the end of the call he said he thought I was a great fit skills wise and that i was articulate on the phone but they had alot of candidates so he’d be narrowing with a skills assessment in a couple days and then he’d like to set up a face to face this week or the next. Now its the next week and I haven’t heard back. I sent a thank you note. I’m thinking that I’m just being passed over because they had other more qualified candidates. He said more than once in the conversation that he definitely wanted to sit down with me but I didn’t even hear about the skills assessment so I’m pretty sure I’m out of the running. My real question is, is it normal for people to reject you in hiring by just not responding? It seems quite odd and a bit rude to me. Any insight you can share would be greatly appreciated.

    1. November 15, 2011 at 7:22 am

      Hi Chris,
      In re: to your recruiter, I would definitely be persistent and even try to speak with a manager because it’s important for you to get feedback. I’m sure they are just busy and you didn’t get the job so you are at the bottom of the list in re: to priority. In your other case I would just contact the CEO and tell him that you would love to schedule a quick sit down with him so you can meet him and talk about your skills and where he can talk about his company needs. At the end of the day it is rude not to get back to someone but people are busy. Keep in mind as well I think it might be a good sign that they haven’t gotten back to you with a quick email stating “sorry but we are not interested in you” or “We regret to inform you that the position is filled”. This means the CEO is probably thinking about you but needs to figure out where and when he can schedule to meet you. Stay positive Chris and persistent. Hope that helps.

  306. Beth
    November 15, 2011 at 9:45 am

    I just received an email stating the company I interviewed with is going to pursue other candidates.
    Is it appropriate for me to write an email back asking why or what qualifications I was missing?

    1. November 15, 2011 at 10:01 am

      Hi Beth,
      Absolutely!!! Ask for feedback because it’s the only way for you to improve.

  307. Jan
    November 15, 2011 at 10:14 am


    I applied for a job internally in my company and had an interview with the hiring manager and one of the team members. A week later I interviewed with the VP of the area. Both interviews went well.

    I did not get the job and the recruiter said they were both impressed by me. So I asked why the other person was offered the position and was told they had significant experience in the area – which I also have. Do you think this was just a canned answer and they hired somone they knew?

    1. November 15, 2011 at 10:18 am

      Very likely Jan. At the end of the day the person that is chosen is the person they think will do the job and get a long with everyone better. Internal applications are different from other applications. The interviewers already know you and if they don’t can easily ask your current manager about you. Either way you showed everyone that you are interested in a promotion and like you said you impressed everyone too. Stay positive and I’m sure when the right time comes you’ll get the job that you want. Thanks for leaving a comment.

  308. Sang
    November 15, 2011 at 11:21 am

    Dorothy – I stumbled upon this blog and it’s great. It also appears that you are very kind enough to respond to the many questions asked of you. If you don’t mind, I’d like to get your expert opinion as well on my scenario.

    I submitted an application for an out of state position. I had a phone screen interview with the company recruiter and then several phone interviews with the head manager of the department as well as other workers in the department. The position would be located in their West Coast office but I would be supporting their Southern region (which is where I am from and have some experience). I was then was invited to interview in-person at the company’s West coast office. The company paid for my travel. When I was at the company site, the recruiter said they have a very narrow list of finalists they are looking at. Two days later the company recruiter asked for some references and I gave them 3 references. The recruiter contacted my references (I’m pretty sure my references gave glowing references as I talked to each reference beforehand). I would have assumed I had a pretty good chance of getting an offer but it’s been 2 weeks now and I just followed up with the company recruiter and they say I am still being considered for the position but that they are still analyzing the finalists, and the recruiter said that if I had a pending offer elsewhere to let them know. I am not interviewing elsewhere at the moment as I don’t have an immediate need to move from my current job and I would like to hear final word from this company before moving on. My question is why do you think it is taking so long? I had discussions with the recruiter and asked if my out of state candidacy is hindering the process, and he suggested it was part of the analysis, as well as my salary expectations (I would be taking a big pay cut for the new position). I am not sure what else I can do to move this along and don’t want to appear “desparate” or “pushy.” Would you suggest anything? If you need more information to analyze my situation, please let me know. Hopefully your answer to my situation can also help others in a similar situation.

    1. November 15, 2011 at 1:26 pm

      Hi Sang,
      Hiring someone and bringing them from out of state is a difficult decision. You are being compared to all the local finalists who are easier to hire than you. This is just a hard place to be for you because I’m sure you did well but I just hope you did better and could offer more experience than the local candidates. I think you can’t do anything at this point. If you were unemployed it might be an easier decision because no company wants to take someone from another company and offer them less $ and hope that they will be happy. Just make sure you send your thank you notes and I really hope you get the job. Good Luck!

  309. Caroline
    November 15, 2011 at 4:16 pm

    Dorothy, just one more question. I have been volunteering at this organization for two years when I submitted my resume for a job. Most of the jobs are “political” and went to folks who had worked on the campaign in this office. (And, most of the workers are very young around 24 and I am …. a bit older) However, the process was opened up this month. When I sent my resume in I was told, “The boss really liked your resume.” Eight candidates (four at a time) including me in the first group were interviewed for a whole day – which included a training and test (I scored 29 of 30) – and meeting with the director and the two Exec. dir. I studied and practiced for the interview. Of course, I know everyone because I have been volunteering there. A bit odd. So, after being told I would hear “Friday,” I asked and the HR Asst. said to sit tight. I did not hear anything for another week. Finally today I got a rejection e-mail. I feel like what greater qualifications could someone else have than me?…. How can I follow-up and be positive, ask them to keep my resume if another position comes up, and find out perhaps what kept me from getting the job. I also will continue to volunteer there, so… It is a little bit different from what I have been reading. Thanks for your sage wisdom.

    1. November 15, 2011 at 5:07 pm

      Hi Caroline,
      You need to stay positive. I’m glad you tested well and have the qualifications. Remember recruiters and hiring managers don’t just look at the qualifications and test results they look at personality and fit with the group. Does everyone like you as a volunteer? To get hired anywhere they need to like you enough to work with you everyday and pay you. I know you’re disappointed but to try to get honest feedback you need to be really positive and show that the decision to not hire is ok with you. Once you don’t appear frustrated, angry and confused the recruiter or HR could feel comfortable enough to tell you the truth and how you can improve for future interviews or even if you have a future in this organization. Sometimes not getting hire after knowing everyone, having all the experience, volunteering and even testing is a sign that they may not really want to work with you. It maybe time to move on and volunteer somewhere else. Just somethings for you to think about. I hope you get honest feedback and they appreciate you as a volunteer. Good Luck!

  310. Chris
    November 16, 2011 at 12:52 pm

    I got allready 7 interviews for one company.
    1 tel screening 1 on location, 2 via skype, 3 in another country where company has it’s own HQ.
    So, everything goes fine, but i was little bit bizarre when Business analytic of my future work ask me, do i maybe consider also other position in that company…That was very strange, maybe it was a test do i really want this job. Whatever interview closed ok, and another 2 in that day also.
    I’m waiting for the result.

    1. November 16, 2011 at 1:04 pm

      Hi Chris,
      Sometimes recruiters want to know if you would consider another role with the company because we are curious if you just like the role or do you like the company. If you don’t get the job would you still want to work for that company in a different capacity. Good Luck and I hope you hear from them soon.

  311. Jason
    November 16, 2011 at 1:12 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    I would like to express our deepest appreciation for being my listener during our recent conversations. I know that you are very busy and I am very happy that you created this blog for people who can put their comments here. Anyhow, I have been receiving calls from recruiters..let see what will happen…..I am wishing you the best.


    1. November 16, 2011 at 1:23 pm

      Thank you Jason. I’m glad my advice/tips and articles have been helpful and good luck with your job search.

  312. Fran
    November 16, 2011 at 4:35 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    And so, here I am. Well, my situation is more than somehow similar to the other ones listed here. I applied for a position, I was contacted directly after a month or so by HM and HR. They would have been happy to speak with me. I arranged to travel there and I proposed to have a meeting. We had a meeting, the HM was really happy, and he pushed to make me meet another Manager. Made the interview. Two weeks later, after following up, I was contacted by the HR: both the managers were really impressed and I had a really positive feedback. Set up a phone interview with the HR one week later, one more week later I was asked for a phone interview with the team and another manager. I proposed to go onsite (it’s 2 hours flight). So I went for the interview. Did the interview, pretty well. Everybody was impressed by my CV. Of course I sent individual Thank You letters everybody, including the HR.
    After ten days I follow up, the HR tells me they are finishing the interviews and she will have an update for me soon. I make two weeks pass, I write her a follow up mail. No answer. After one week I send her another email, the day before yesterday to be precise. Guess what??? No reply. This evening I have called her and left a message on the voice mail.
    Of course is reasonable to think that I did not get the job, one month has passed from my last interview. Needless to say that I still have hope. I am a human being yes, and I put so much effort, interest, and initiative for that position that I feel humiliated by an HR not even taking 2 minutes to tell me thanks, but no thanks. It’s so frustrating and depressing. I understand not getting hired, but I don’t understand such a rude and disrespectful behavior.
    Advice please…

    1. November 16, 2011 at 7:22 pm

      Hi Fran,
      They maybe waiting to get back to you after they confirm that their #1 candidate has accepted the position. In any case, I agree with you and it is rude not to get a response after two weeks since your last interview. Even a quick email stating that they are still finalizing things would be appreciated. I think you sent enough emails and voice mails to show them that you expect to hear from them so all you can do right now is wait. Keep in mind that when the decision to hire is left between two candidates it can be very difficult. During this time as a candidate you do not want to be pushy, show frustration with the process or be annoying because it does not look good. If you can’t be patient during the interview process what will you be like with real work stresses. I’m not saying that you went over board I’m just saying that candidates need to be patient and always be professional throughout the process even if HR or the HM lack that same courtesy.

  313. Karen
    November 18, 2011 at 12:06 pm

    Hi Dorothy:

    I am in desperate need of some advice.

    I worked for a company for about 5 year and always received excellent performance reviews and bonuses. In May, completely out of the blue and from a relatively new boss, I received an improved plan letter which was very vague in terms of actions to improve (one general statement was that I needed to be more helpful, and needed to help do more training of so-and-so). After several meetings I told them that I didn’t think this was going to end well as I was already working 10 hour days and in a very high stress job (and didn’t think that I could take on more). All of the meetings were with my boss’ boss and in fact my direct boss told me that they didn’t like and didn’t agree with what was going on.
    In the middle of July, I was escorted out of building with a severance package in hand.

    I have been interviewing for other jobs and have been asked about why I left my last employer. I am wondering what the best response is for this?

    My last interview was on Monday and they asked about my departure from the last company to which I replied and then they asked me another question about it suggesting they weren’t satisfied with my first response. They told me they would get back to me next week, but haven’t asked for my references so I guess I blew that interview?

    1. November 18, 2011 at 12:12 pm

      Hi Karen,
      What does your ROE say re: your termination? Meaning what would your last employer say was the reason you left? This is important in re: to what you say in future interviews.

  314. Karen
    November 18, 2011 at 12:22 pm

    I beleive that my ROE just says K (which is Other).

    1. November 18, 2011 at 12:43 pm

      Hi Karen,
      Well since you worked there for about 5 years you can say that you just needed a change or that you were looking for more responsibility and career growth and your last employer didn’t offer that. You can also say that there was a change in management/organizational structure which resulted in your role drastically changing. Whatever you say you of course need to make it sound that it was either a mutual split or a decision that was forced up on you but that you were essentially ready to move on. The key is to stay positive – this was your decision or that you are very happy with the decision and your answer needs to be short but long enough that it answers the question without having the recruiter dig for more. Blabbing on makes you look nervous meaning that you are either lying or covering something up. Things changed in your department/organization that effected your role and it was simply time to move on. Hope that helps and thanks for leaving a comment.

  315. Fran
    November 18, 2011 at 12:54 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    thanks a lot for your reply! Actually I have some evolution, I mean, situation is still the same, but I had my small victory. Well, I waited one more day from the voicemail to HR, then I wrote to the HM directly. I wrote a really nice email (I am really proud about it) in which I thanked him for ever reading, restate my interest and my potential fit, explaining that I was wondering which was the situation since I was looking in more than one possibility, but that i was actually preferring this one, since I liked a lot. Then asked for feedback, and thanked again also for the chance of interviewing…
    Guess what? Got a reply this morning from HR stating they should decide in few days…Well y situation did not changed, but I got that REPLY!!!

    1. November 18, 2011 at 2:17 pm

      Good for you Fran! You took the high road and continue to prove to be a professional 🙂 Even if you don’t get this job you will definitely be considered a great candidate to deal with. Thanks for the update.

  316. Laura
    November 18, 2011 at 2:18 pm

    Hi Dorothy,

    Your blog is really helpful and fun and I’ll be checking it out frequently. 🙂

    On Monday I had an interview for an assistant position. First I met with a recruiter, and then the two hiring managers. (one-on-one, separately). The job would be assisting the two hiring managers with their work.

    I thought the interview went really well, especially with the two hiring managers. At the end of the interview I got a homework assignment. They gave me until the end of next day to finish it, but I finished it by eight in the morning to impress them. Two hours later I got an email back from one of the hiring managers, thanking me for getting it done so quickly and so well.

    I sent handwritten thank you notes to each person on Wednesday. This morning I sent an email to the recruiter, thanking her again and asking about the timeline. (Regretfully, I had forgotten to ask any of them about the timeline.) I haven’t heard back yet and I feel very anxious! Do you have any insights on how I should follow up, if I don’t hear back from her? Should I contact the two hiring managers directly next week?

    1. November 18, 2011 at 2:21 pm

      Hi Laura,
      I would wait and see what the recruiter says re: the timeline. Did they ask for your references? In a week, if you have their emails, I would contact both hiring managers and thank them again for the interview and that you are very interested in the role but you are interviewing for other roles and you would like to know if they need any more information from you to help with the decision or if you can clarify anything for them i.e. the responsibilities of the role. I’m sure you will get a response 🙂 My fingers are crossed for you.

  317. Meg B
    November 18, 2011 at 2:35 pm

    Hi Dorothy!
    I recently applied to a leasing office. The community manager emailed my resume to the HR. I was emailed by the recruiter on the very next day stating “she reviewed my resume the salary is xxx and if it sounds interesting to reply with answers to 7 questions” (about my previous experience). I replied to her email about 3 hours after I recieved it. Today is friday, I sent a professional THANK YOU for considering me, and expressing my interest ( I also included my cell phone ). The recruiter has not contacted since her intial email. I feel I am qualified for the position. She is based out of MI, so I am assuming a phone interview is the next step. When should I expect to hear from her, and when should I simply toss it. I have continued to look for other positions, but I would love the chance to work with this company. Thanks

    1. November 18, 2011 at 3:00 pm

      Hi Meg B,
      I’m guessing the job you’re interested in is in another state because you state that the recruiter is based in MI. When you’re applying to a job out of state the competition is fierce. You are up against locals who are much easier to hire. I think it’s a good sign that the recruiter contacted you but it was essentially a pre-screen rather than an interview and many pre-screens are geared to screen you out rather than in unfortunately. You could always email the recruiter and make sure she understands that you are not only very interested in this position but also in relocating. Do you know anyone in that company that can vouch for you?

  318. Sang
    November 18, 2011 at 3:02 pm

    Dorothy, thank you for your insight. I never thought about the perspective you said about a company not wanting to bring on an out of state candidate at a lower salary and hoping that they would be happy. But they already knew my salary before all the interviews and inviting me to an in-person interview….As an update, after being told after my interview that they were only analyzing finalists and not interviewing any new candidates, I learned the company reposted for the same position recently. I asked the recruiter if that was a hint on my candicacy chances, and he replied by saying that I have not been eliminated from consideration yet but that they are stll going through interviews. So basically I feel like I was mislead. Also, I just found out that the recruiter only called one of my 3 references I gave him two weeks ago, and he had been playing phone tag with my other references. One of those references just informed me that he left a voicemail to the recruiter again yesterday but the recruiter hasn’t called him back yet. After two weeks now I doubt the recruiter will be following up with the rest of my references. So why do you think the recruiter would begin checking my references and then stopped with the others? Perhaps some intervening candidate showed up that they are pursuing instead? I just sent a thank you note to one of the managers as you suggested and I just said that I remain interested in the position. At this point, I feel less excited about this position given the company’s handling of this process. The recruiter had gone from asking for my references and checked at least one of them and saying that I would hear from them in the next few days to now saying they are still interviewing. I was under the impression I was the top candidate with an offer pending the reference check to now being a stand-by in hopes of a better candidate showing up. Do you think my assessment of the situation is correct? I’ll see if I get any reply from the manager I sent the thank you email to but if not, perhaps that is another sign they are not interested.

    1. November 18, 2011 at 3:19 pm

      Hi Sang,
      People don’t realize how important references are. Not only do they need to be positive references but they need to be reached easily. If I was that recruiter I would have also given up if it took me two weeks to hear back from your references. Next time make sure that your references are prepared for the phone call. I think they were considering you for the role and checked one reference. I know some recruiters who do that so they know that they don’t get any surprises if they seriously consider the candidate and move forward to the next stage with them. Again, I think they liked you but not enough to hire you and this is why they are considering other candidates. I would move on because there is nothing else for you to do but wait. I keep saying this but not getting a response back after you send a thank you email does not mean you didn’t get the job. There is no reason for the manager to respond and managers in general do not have the time to respond to every thank you email they receive. Just know you did your best but I would suggest you move on. You never know in a week or two if they don’t find a better candidate or their #1 candidate falls through you might be offered the role. Remember to stay professional and polite through the whole process so they can think of you if and when another role opens up.

  319. Laura
    November 18, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    Thank you so much for your advice. I will definitely do that. Hope you have a great weekend! 😀

  320. Laura
    November 18, 2011 at 3:52 pm

    p.s. I was asked to fill out and bring a comprehensive application including references. As of yesterday (Thursday) evening I know my references were not contacted, because they wrote back saying they’ll say good things for me. Truthfully I had thought they might be checking references right away, judging from the situation and how strongly I felt about the interview.