11 Post-Interview Signs That Suggest You Didn't Get The Job

Job interviews Mar 18, 2021

"Did I get the job or not?"

If you feel there are signs suggesting you didn't get the job post-interview, you're not alone. You think you aced a terrific interview, you answered all the questions the hiring manager asked, and you feel like they were impressed.

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When the waiting game begins, you can spend hours overthinking what happened during the interview. But this is unnecessarily stressful.

Nothing is guaranteed when it comes to a hiring decision.

Some significant indicators or signs can quickly reveal whether a job opportunity is going to work out or not - no matter how well the interview went. The hiring process and some subtle clues will tell you exactly how the hiring panel feels about you as a candidate.

Bad Interview Sign #1: The Interviewer Didn't Seem Interested in You

One of the most prominent signs the interview went bad is the interviewer's lack of interest.

If you got the sense that the person you were talking to didn't care about what you had to say or seemed distracted is never a good sign.

They may have been staring at the clock, fiddling with their phones, or checking their emails regularly while you talk. Signs like these indicate that the interviewer has lost interest in what you say and won't follow up with you after the interview.

An enthusiastic handshake, a non-lukewarm posture, and regular eye contact show that the interviewer gives you full attention and appears engaged.

An interviewer paying attention to what you have to say is likely the one who wants to give you the chance of getting the job in the first place.

However, if you feel like you're speaking to yourself while the hiring manager seems to be looking everywhere but on you, try to take the energy level up a notch.

Bad Interview Sign #2: The Interview Was Cut Short

In case your interview was scheduled for 45 minutes, but you got 15-20 minutes with the interviewer, that's a sign that no job offer will be forthcoming.

If the interview suddenly ends and you feel that the conversation wasn't long enough to cover all you need, that's not a good omen.

Since time is money, employers will not waste their time on candidates who are not being seriously considered for the job.

The length of the interview shows whether or not the employer has at least thought of hiring you. The longer an interview goes, the more it shows that the employer is enjoying the conversation with you.

There are exceptional circumstances, like an emergency, but if the hiring manager didn't explain or apologize, that's not a great sign.

You don't have to take it personally if the interview was oddly short.

It doesn't always mean it was your fault.

For instance, the employer may have already found the ideal candidate before they met with you, and that's the reason you are treated as a courtesy.

Even if you are the most confident interviewer, a short interview can shake up your nerves. Don't ask for more time...

Thank the interviewer for their time and keep a positive attitude.

Bad Interview Sign #3: The Interviewer Asked Questions that Have Nothing To Do with the Job You Applied For

The nature of questions asked during an interview indicates if the company has real intentions of hiring after the interview.

Asking probing and unrelated questions is a red flag.

Remember to stay calm and courteous.

Don't take it personally.

Such signs reveal the company culture and protect you from joining that kind of workplace.

In some cases, asking questions that are too easy is a common tactic of companies that want to provide their candidates with a positive experience, regardless of whether they are unsatisfied with the interview process.

So, if you were asked questions that were too easy, that's not something to be necessarily happy about.

The more challenging the question is, the more this indicates that the company examines your skills and ability to get the job.

Avoiding asking about how your skills and experiences will help their organization is a sign that they don't believe you will be a great fit in their company.

Bear in mind that one of the most indicative questions is whether you have other job offers or interviews.

When the employers try to find out what other jobs you have applied to and the likes, they don't want to lose you. If they have no real intention to hire you, they probably won't waste their time asking whether you are looking elsewhere.

Bad Interview Sign #4: Your Conduct Was Inappropriate for the Interview

If you were not prepared for the interview, you showed up late, or with inappropriate dressing, then such incidents reduce the likelihood of getting hired. Arriving late for the interview makes a negative first impression.

Since the first impression is important, leverage them correctly for the interviewers to get a positive idea for you in their head.

Dressing appropriately for an interview is an integral part of the hiring process. Research the company website and social media pages and try to determine their dress code. You don’t always have to wear a suit, but you should always look your best and feel comfortable.

Being unprepared for the company you interviewed hampers your chances of getting hired. Good research about the company you applied for before every interview helps you answer important questions satisfactorily.

Off-handed or ill-prepared answers during an interview make it clear that you haven't researched the company or, worse, that you are unable to connect your experience with your future plans at the company.

Bad Interview Sign #5: They Pointed Out that They Were Still Open for Other Candidates

This is one of the most polite ways for the recruiter to tell you that they were not impressed enough with your conversation.

So, they keep looking for something that was missing.

Recruiters use this line as a stalling tactic when they want to attract more candidates in order to find the ideal one that fits the company.

Assuming that you are not the candidate they are looking for, this is a subtle way for the recruiter to answer your question about when you can expect to hear back from them.

An employer who sees you as a good fit will indicate when they want the vacancy to be filled. They divulge this information only to those they are seriously considering for the position.

If they don't do this or use the statement that they’re still considering other candidates, you aren’t the right candidate for them.

In other words, they don't intend to contact you.

Nine times out of ten, that phrase is the kiss of death for a job seeker since most recruiters, when they are interested, state their intention right then.

Bad Interview Sign #6: They Didn't Try to "Sell" Their Company to You

Despite the fact that you spent your time "selling" yourself, the recruiters didn't do the same for their company. A recruiter who envisions you as part of their company will do their best to present the great place you'll work for in the future.

When an interviewer takes the opportunity to give you a mini excursion after the interview, it is always a good sign instead of leading you directly out the door.

The hiring process is expensive and this is the reason why recruiters won't take the time to give you a tour around the building if they haven't been convinced you are a good fit for the role.

This is a way of cutting back on the amount of time and money.

There is no need to get you excited about working with them unless they are seriously considering you after the interview.

Furthermore, they won't introduce you to key personnel for the same reason.

Introducing you to your would-be colleagues or giving you their business cards is another way of trying to entice you with their workplace.

Unless you get this treatment at the end of the interview, it is the clearest sign that you're not coming back.

Bad Interview Sign #7: They Still Advertise the Job After the Interview

The most obvious reason an employer reposts or even keeps an ad running is that they're still looking for someone more suitable than you to fill the position.

It is also likely the employer wants to see who else might apply since they may not be in a rush; Even if you are. If the job post has been left on the website after your interview, you should move ahead.

Realizing that the job advertisement was reposted or never left the website is heartbreaking. Sadly, this is also a way that companies use to avoid informing the candidates directly they didn't pass the interview.

A re-advertised job post means that the position is still unfilled.

But this is not the end of the world. Be familiar with applications that automate your job search, like LoopCv, and enjoy saving your time when it automatically applies to the next job you really like.

Using such a tool, you won't feel disappointed the next time you find the vacancy still left on the website after your interview.

You will know that your next opportunity will have already come out, since this tool automatically applies to job posts without requiring any effort from you.

Bad Interview Sign #8: They Said You Are Overqualified

When you were told you're overqualified, you should know that the recruiters probably don't think you're right for this job.

It seems to be the most frustrating reason for not getting a job.

You spent hours learning new skills, getting more education, deepening your experience, and now because of this, you won't be offered a job.

However, being overqualified is almost never the real reason you failed in joining a company.

The truth is that companies that are not willing to pay your qualifications most of the times plan to hire someone "underqualified".

In this case, why bother interviewing you if they cannot afford to hire you? Of course, most recruiters won't tell you this.

According to Forbes, an overqualified candidate could also be an old one. This discrimination based on age is often the reason why you arere called overqualified.

Unfortunately, some companies maintain negative stereotypes about older candidates. By using this word, they avoid addressing the age issue straight in hiring.

There is also the possibility the hiring manager views you as a competitor. Suppose your skills and experience surpass that of your potential supervisors.

In that case, they probably feel you could easily replace them.

Therefore, there's a good chance you won't get the job.

Knowing that you are overqualified can motivate you to target positions that require your full capabilities and offer the salary you deserve.

Bad Interview Sign #9: They Didn't Discuss the Role & Salary

If the interviewer took a few minutes to brief you on what the role would entail after the questions were over, that's a good sign.

The recruiters will try to attract you by talking about the role and describing how your skills and experience would contribute positively to the company, only if they intend to hire you.

An employer who isn't interested in offering you the job won't bother telling you about the role. Supposing they have already decided that you weren't right for the position, they will avoid explaining the details of the role.

Let alone the salary!

Salary is one of the big tell-tale signs that you are seriously being considered for the position. The employers who have no interest in hiring you won't bother talking about remuneration with you.

Once they want to give you the job, they are likely to start talking about the role and the salary. If in all their questions and interactions with you, no mention is made about the position and the pay, they don't see you as part of their company.

Bad Interview Sign #10: They Didn't Give You a Specific Timeline

When a recruiter updates you on the next steps means that the interview went well. Oppositely, when a recruiter seems indecisive when asked about the timeline, that's a sign you might not be getting another invitation.

This is the moment the employer should let you know when they will get back to you. If they seem hesitant to divulge their next steps, you could be out of the running.

A recruiter who wants you to take the job wouldn't balk at giving you a firm indication of when you'll hear back.

Suppose they used excuses like they're still interviewing candidates and they have no clue about the hiring timeline.

This is a tell-tale sign your interview didn't go well.

Recruiters will reveal when they desire the vacancy to be filled, only to the candidate who is the right person to fill the position.

If they don't want to hire you, they won't be definite about the duration of the hiring process. This is their way to prevent you from having false hopes.

Recruiters who are interested in you will make it clear straight away.

Bad Interview Sign #11: They Don't Respond To Your Follow-up Emails

Even if the hiring manager gave you a specific timeline, they might not respond to your follow-up emails. It's because they either filled the position, or you aren't the exact fit.

After leaving an interview process—even a great one—make sure you are aware of the appropriate ways to follow-up with the recruiter.

Read the article below to find out when is the right time to follow-up about the hiring decision and how to do it well, in order to avoid becoming annoying and pushy.

» How Do You Ask a Recruiter When a Hiring Decision is Made?

To sum up, there are some specific signs that suggest the interview went badly.

It's crucial that you maintain your confidence and a positive attitude—no matter how discouraged you may be. Find out the right job searching tools, and soon you will stop wondering whether you've got the job but rather when you'll get the job.



Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do you know if you didn't get the job after an interview?

When it comes to the hiring decision, nothing is guaranteed. However, some tell-tale signs indicate whether or not you got the job after the interview. Look for them, and probably you will figure out about the hiring decision.

  • Do employers let you know if you didn't get the job?

Since many employers avoid getting back to you to announce that you didn't get the job, checking the job ad is an effective way to determine the answer. If you find the vacancy still on the website after your interview, it probably means you didn't get the job.

  • Is it a bad sign if you didn't hear back after an interview?

Often, the hiring process takes a long time. However, you can consider that things don't seem to go well if the recruiter answered neither your follow-up email. Keep hunting!

  • How soon should you expect to hear back after an interview?

In case you've left the interview without asking about the hiring timeline, or the employer didn't give you one, then send a follow-up email about ten days after your interview. If the recruiter provides you with an exact date, then be patient and don't contact them before the said day is over.

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