After the anticipation you felt leading up to your interview, it can certainly be frustrating when the interviewer says she'll call you and forces you to wait to find out if you landed the job. It's common for employers to notify candidates by phone rather than making a quick decision during the interview, so it isn't necessarily a bad sign when you walk out of the meeting without an answer. As you wait for the phone to ring, it's essential that you maintain your professionalism -- and recognize when it's time to move on.
Wait It Out
While there's a chance that the call you're anxiously awaiting could come within hours of your interview, this simply isn't always the case. Countless factors could delay the decision-making process for the interviewer, including having more interviews to conduct, waiting for approval from other hiring managers or finalizing an offer to make you when she calls. In some cases, it could take days for a company to call you back with a decision. The best thing to do is simply wait it out and try not to let your nerves get the best of you. Send a short thank-you letter or email to the interviewer and go about your regular business until she calls you with an answer.
If it's been a few days or the interviewer said she'd let you know by a certain date and that time has passed, feel free to follow up with her -- but avoid going overboard with it. Simply call and say that you're still highly interested in the position, and you're wondering if she has made a decision or if the job has been filled. Show that you're enthusiastic, but try not to appear desperate. Avoid being too eager and acting like a pest -- there's no need to call the interviewer repeatedly to ask the same question, and excessively following up through multiple forms of communication could easily annoy her and hurt your odds of being hired.
While you're waiting for a call back, you don't have to put your job search on hold. If you think the job is a long shot or you feel like you bombed it completely, you'll probably benefit more from continuing to explore your options than you will from sitting by the phone waiting for a call. Continue applying for jobs and sending out resumes while you wait. In the event the interviewer calls back and tells you you're hired, you can simply tell anyone who calls in the future that you've already found a job.
While it's generally considered unprofessional for an interviewer to neglect to follow up with candidates she's decided to pass on, it happens. If weeks have passed with no word, and all of your attempts to follow up have proven fruitless, it's best to just throw in the towel and look for more promising opportunities. While even unspoken rejection can be a bitter pill to swallow, use the opportunity as a learning experience. Analyze your interview and figure out what you could have done differently. When you interview with other companies in the future, be aware of where you struggled in the past so you can try to ace your way through the meeting.
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