Tuesday, December 06, 2011

How to deal with job interview delays

After all that photo exhibition you had been put through, time for some serious topic. In this post I am sharing my thoughts in job interview failures.

Most of us would have gone through job interviews at various stages in life and as we know not all interviews will result in positive response as we expect it to be. Sometimes the response takes so long and frustration levels can be difficult to control. In this post let us discuss why interview response can get delayed.

You’ve attended an interview and have come home with a promise “We’ll revert to you soon” from the company that interviewed you. One week, 2 weeks, a month and still there’s no response. Does it mean you’re rejected? Should you repeatedly follow up? Why companies take so much time?

A selection process in an IT company can take anywhere between few weeks to few months, depending on level, urgency and other aspects. Possible reasons for delay are as below:
1.       Company might be doing a background check on you- often outsourced to an external agency and takes 2-3 weeks – Companies do this at various stages depending on their policy- some do it before issuing offer letter, others do it inbetween offer letter and joining date and others do it after joining. People who are interacting with you (for selection process) won’t be authorized to tell you that your background check is in progress, so expect some other reasons from them
2.       Decision makers are not free- Middle management might have done the final shortlist, but final decision might be taken from a higher authority who might be travelling/not free to look into the shortlisted candidates and select one.
3.       Requirements change-If assume you were being evaluated for a specific project and before you’re hired something changes in the project (making your selection unnecessary), then companies may chose to wait and watch for other appropriate opportunity where you could be put in.
4.       There could be flags on your resume- Let us say six months ago you applied in the same company, different department for a specific post and you were rejected. Currently you are being considered for a different role in different department of the same company, for which you’re more qualified. Even though you’re eligible to get selected, any negative remark/flag set on your resume during your earlier interview can make selection process complex
5.       There could be other departments considering your resume- Even if you didn’t make it for the post you applied, those who interviewed you might have found you more suitable for a different team/project within the company and might have referred you there

What NOT to do when you’re waiting for the job interview results:
1.       Do NOT DO EXCESSIVE FOLLOW UP: repeated follow ups irritate people, when there’s nothing much they can do. Calling a manager in the middle of his meeting to ask when you can expect your offer will only irritate him further. Be assured that once selected, appropriate teams will do the needful to inform you and take you onboard. Please be patient and wait (or find other opportunities if the wait is unbearable), instead of calling people who can’t help much.
2.       Don’t assume you’re rejected: Delay doesn’t always mean rejection, as there can be genuine reasons for delay. If the wait is getting unbearable, do search for other options, but don’t assume anything yet. Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst.
3.       Do not bad mouth the company or vent your frustrations online-it won’t help at all and can reflect badly on you.
4.       Do not compare yourself with other candidates who attended the interview with you. (Example: Mr X received a call for HR Round, but I didn’t get any so far) Selection process is supposed to be discrete and keep it that way, till the results/outcome can be officially made public. if you suspect you've been missed out on some key communication, check politely or indirectly.

You might also wish to read my article on rejection handling, which is consistently at No.1 position in google search result for the keyword “Rejection Handling”


The wild said...

the least the comapany can do is to give a approx time instead of giving a vague answer of very soon ,that is misleading ,the companies would have seen more candidates than vice versa,giving a approx time would be fair for both the stakeholders

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