Signs You Didn’t Get The Job
Interviews can be very stressful and anxiety-inducing for some people. And when you walk out, it can be difficult to know how it went or if you got the job.
Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at it), there are some tell-tale signs to look for after an interview that might mean you aren’t the best fit for the job. Keep an eye out for any of the following signs that it might not have gone well.
12 Signs You Didn’t Get the Job After an Interview
1. You’re Missing Qualifications
If you go into the interview and get asked about your Microsoft Excel experience but don’t have any, it’s not a good sign.
If these skills aren’t a requirement, the interviewer will likely say that. But if they ask, and you answer “no,” followed by a bit of silence from the interviewer, it probably means you don’t meet the requirements for the role.
2. Short Job Interview with the hiring manager
Short interviews aren’t typically a good sign. Generally speaking, anything that lasts less than ten minutes or feels like it ended in the middle might indicate a poor result.
If an employer is interested, they’re more likely to conduct a longer interview to hear you out and give you a chance to understand the position you’re applying for.
3. There’s No Response To Follow-Up Emails
Not receiving a response to a follow-up email is unprofessional but, unfortunately, very common.
If you finish an interview and follow up in the days after without a response, they have likely moved on from your application. Good employers will reach out with a formal rejection letter, but many will ghost you.
4. There’s an Active or Reposted Job Ad
Although many recruiters won’t take a job ad down until it expires, if you see the job is still active/listed several days/weeks after your interview, they are likely looking for someone else to fill the role.
5. The interviewer Doesn’t Request References
Not asking for references isn’t a definite sign you didn’t get the job. It could be that your interview and resume were so good they don’t need them. But in general, most employers will ask for references even if they never reach out to them.
If you offer and they say they don’t need your references, they may no longer be considering you as an applicant.
6. The interviewer asks Irrelevant Questions
If the interviewer asks you a vague or irrelevant interview question, they may have already disqualified you or found another qualified candidate.
Some employers don’t want to cancel job interviews because they feel rude doing so. Instead, they might go through with the interview and ask very general and unrelated questions (not ideal for anyone).
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7. The interviewer Say’s You’re Overqualified
When an interviewer keeps harping on how you’re overqualified for the position, they probably aren’t going to hire you.
Whether their comments are sincere or not, it implies your skillset doesn’t match what they’re looking for, and they’re afraid your salary expectation will be too high.
8. The interviewer Mentions Other Candidates
If the interviewer mentions other candidates and how qualified they are or how many applicants they have, it’s not a promising sign. Competition is good, but constantly talking about others isn’t ideal.
9. The interviewer Doesn’t Sell the Position
Interviewers will usually try to sell you on the position and company at the beginning or end of the interview.
If they don’t do this, they might not think you’re suitable for the job, so there’s no reason for them to entice you. The same is true if they don’t ask any questions or concerns you may have.
10. The interviewer has Closed Body Language
Even if the interviewer says and does all the expected parts of an interview, you can still tell a lot from their body language.
An interviewer leaning away from you, arms folded, engaging in little to no eye contact, might indicate they have moved on.
When an employer is interested in hiring you, they will be attentive throughout the interview process. They’re trying to get to know and read you before they make you a job offer or at least have you back for a second interview. They may be more relaxed and calm if they don’t plan on hiring you.
11. Mismatched Compensation Expectations
Many job interviews include a short discussion about your salary expectations.
If they say the compensation is one thing and you express that you expected something much higher, it may disqualify you immediately. While this is frustrating, it’s best for both parties to part ways here.
12. The Interviewer Doesn’t Provide Next Steps
One of the biggest signs you didn’t get the job after an interview is that they don’t mention any next steps or plans for a follow-up.
Interested hiring managers will ask the best ways to reach you or tell you to expect an email or call from them within “X” amount of time. If the interview ends with a simple “thanks for your time,” you might not get the job.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
What are the main signs you did get the job?
There are a few key signs that you may have been offered a job after an interview, such as the interviewer telling you that you have been selected for the position (pretty straightforward), the interviewer asking you about your salary expectations or availability, and the interviewer discussing next steps in the hiring process with you.
Of course, it’s important to remember that nothing is certain until you receive a formal job offer.
Do they tell you if you didn’t get the job?
It’s common for employers to inform candidates if they have not been selected for a job. This is typically done as a professional courtesy through a templated email.
Suppose you have not heard back from an employer after an interview and are interested in your application status. In that case, it is generally appropriate to send a follow-up email or phone call to inquire about the status after a few days of your interview date (unless specified otherwise).
What to do when you get rejected from the job?
While it can be a bummer, there are always learning opportunities when we don’t get our way. Here are a few next steps to take after getting rejected:
- Focus on the positives: It’s easy to focus on the negatives when things go wrong. But look back at your conversation and try to find some positives within the interaction. Worst case scenario, you had some interview practice under your belt for the next opportunity.
- Take a break: If your schedule allows it, take a short break from applying to jobs. This can often be a long, stressful process, so taking time to step away is extremely important.
- Get back on the horse: Similar to what we talked about with focusing on the positives, take what you have learned from the previous interview and apply it to the next.
Wrapping Up | signs you didn’t get the job after the interview
It can feel like a waste of time if you go through the interview process just to lose out on the job, but every interview is an opportunity to learn.
These interactions will help you perfect your technique which could eventually lead to your dream job. To recap our twelve signs you might not get the job:
- Missing qualifications
- Short interview
- No response to follow up
- The job posting is still active
- Doesn’t request references
- Irrelevant questions
- Saying you are overqualified
- Talking about other candidates
- Don’t sell the position
- Closed off body language
- Salary is much different
- No mention of the following steps
It’s also important to note that every hiring manager or recruiter interviews in their own unique way. While these signs should help give you a general sense of what to expect, please don’t give up hope until they confirm the final results.
Best of luck in your next interview!
“47% of the candidates failed the job interview because they didn’t have enough information about the company they applied to.”— Legal Jobs
Title: Signs you didn’t get the job after an interview
Tags: how I know I didn’t get the job, did I get the job, signs you didn’t get the job after an interview, interview results, did I get the job, hiring process, job seeker, company culture
Co-Author: Reid is a contributor for theJub. He’s an employment and marketing enthusiast who studied business before taking on various recruiting, management, and marketing roles. More from the author. | Author Profile