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Dealing with Radio Silence After an Interview

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Radio silence after a job interview can be a painful feeling. But it doesn’t always mean rejection. The hiring team might be taking a long time to debrief or form an offer, the hiring manager may be on vacation, or the job description could have changed since you applied. To get a better sense of what’s holding up the process, ask questions and listen carefully. Specifically, ask the recruiter (or whoever is facilitating your application process), “When will you be reviewing candidates with the hiring manager?” And if you’re dealing directly with the hiring manager, you might ask, “When are you hoping to make a decision?” That debrief date or time frame is pivotal. If the recruiter or hiring manager isn’t communicating with you after that date, you’re most likely not a top candidate. If they say, “We’ll have some decisions made next week,” you’re likely still in consideration. Once the debrief time frame has passed, try not to take the silence personally. Either the hiring manager hasn’t made a decision or, more likely, the recruiter has offered another candidate the job and they’re waiting for a response before rejecting you. And if you ultimately don’t get the job, don’t beat yourself up. Your resume demonstrated your experience and your interview skills were solid, but you just weren’t the top candidate. That’s okay. The process is a feather in your cap; time to move on to the next opportunity.

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