Why Haven't I Heard Back? 5 Reasons Why the Hiring Decision Is Taking So Long - IQ PARTNERS (2023)

You apply for a job. Check! You get a call back for an interview. Check! You have a great interview and you feel like you have a good chance at getting the job. Check!

But then you don’t hear back from the employer. You’re wondering why the hiring decision is taking so long. You thought for sure you made a good connection and would hear back sooner than later. Now it’s later and you are starting to second guess things. Should you move on? Should you wait it out?

Why Haven't I Heard Back? 5 Reasons Why the Hiring Decision Is Taking So Long - IQ PARTNERS (1)

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The reality is that many hiring decisions take longer than anticipated. Employers want to make sure they get the decision right. Also, other unforeseen things pop up. Here we’ll outline some common reasons why hiring decisions take so long.


1. You Were One of the First Interviewed

If you are one of the first candidates to be interviewed for a job, it could take a couple of weeks for the hiring company to complete the interview process. Some companies have a large candidate pool and choose to speak with a series of people. The interview process takes time.

2. A Key Decision Maker Is Absent

Hiring decisions often get delayed because someone who is a key part in making those decisions is absent. They may be ill, they could be on vacation, traveling for work, or they may need to deal with a more pressing issue. The process may come to a halt until this person can resume their hiring duties.

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3. The Company Is Planning Additional Interviews

If the hiring company has identified a number of great candidates, they may want to do a second round of interviews. This second interview could be with people higher up in the organization. It can take some time to get things organized. They want to get things scheduled on their end before contacting you.

4. Reference Checks and Documentation

If your company sees you as a front runner, they may be in the process of doing reference checks. It can take time to track down references. They could also be getting an offer ready. Sometimes this requires sign-offs by multiple individuals.

5. Something Changed Internally

Changes to the job role, position requirements, or even internal budgets can all cause the hiring process to be put on pause temporarily.

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Just because you don’t hear back right away doesn’t mean you are out of contention for the job. Sometimes, the decision-making process just takes longer than anticipated.

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Why is hiring decision taking so long? ›

Hiring processes have lengthened for several reasons. For one thing, employers are requiring candidates to complete more assessments than they used to. Background checks and references have always been important for obvious reasons, but personality tests and skills assessments are common now as well.

Why do hiring managers take so long to respond? ›

They could have offered the job to someone else and are waiting for that person to accept (or not). Or are in the process of negotiating the job offer with the person. It isn't over until the person starts the job (sometimes not then, either).

How long should it take to make a hiring decision? ›

There is no hard and fast rule about how long employers will take to get back to you with a job offer (or a job rejection). The hiring process can vary from employer to employer, the type of job you are applying for, and the industry in which you work. You could get an offer in a day or two or it could take weeks.

What does it mean when you haven't heard back from a job interview? ›

Most recruiters are waiting to hear back from the interviewer or hiring manager before they move on to reviewing new applicants. The recruiter might have pinged the hiring manager about a candidate, the hiring manager was too busy to respond, and the recruiter moves on to focusing on so many other roles.

How long is too long for a hiring process? ›

The recommended timeframe for this is between two and four weeks. If the process takes any longer than four weeks, the risk of losing those A-level candidates to another company rises dramatically. How long is your organization's hiring process—both before and after top candidates have been identified?

How long is too long to wait for a job offer? ›

Candidates want an expedited process

Most know their worth, which lowers their patience when waiting around to get a job offer. After applying, more than half of employees (55%) will give up and move on if they haven't heard from an employer within two weeks of applying, according to the CareerBuilder survey.

What things do interviewers say that let you know you won t get an offer? ›

Although you are qualified for the position, we've decided to select another candidate. This is a nice way of telling you that you're not the right person for the job. We have decided to move in another direction. Another nice way of saying that you don't have the qualifications the hiring manager is seeking.

Why is the recruiter taking so long to get back to me? ›

They're interviewing other candidates.

It's not easy to think about, but you're not the only person interviewing for the position. With approximately four to six candidates invited in for each opening, and each candidate going through two to three rounds of interviews, the process can take a long time.

How long does it take for hiring manager to make an offer? ›

If you're wondering how long does it take for HR to approve a job offer, the answer may vary. After your interview, it's common for companies to give a rough timeline of when they expect to make their decision, with this usually being around two to four weeks.

Who makes the final hiring decision? ›

And while the recruiter manages the process, it's the hiring manager who actually closes the deal. So, hiring managers are the decision-makers; they have the final say as to who gets hired and who gets rejected. They own the outcome of the recruiting process.

How long should a company give you to decide on a job offer? ›

One week is generally the timeframe a candidate should be given to consider a job offer. When a different timeline is necessary, communicating your needs with the candidate can help find a plan that works for all parties.

Is it OK to ask when a hiring decision will be made? ›

Wait Appropriate Amount of Time

If you were interviewed, but you forgot to ask about the hiring timeline, wait at least one week before emailing or calling. Instead of coming right out and asking if you got the job, inquire as to where they are in the decision process and when a final decision is anticipated.

What is the longest time to hear back after interview? ›

But while any and all of the above can (and sometimes does) impact how long it takes for you to get a response after a job interview, Work says, “In most cases, you should hear back within one to two weeks max after a job interview, unless the recruiter or team lets you know it will take longer.”

Is no news good news after job interview? ›

If you've had an interview and haven't received feedback then this is bad news. For one of several reasons again; the recruiter doesn't have your best interest at heart to actually deliver the feedback, the company don't value interviewees enough to deliver feedback (in which case you've had a lucky escape).

How long after an interview Should I be worried if I don't hear back? ›

As a rule of thumb, following up within a week is perfectly acceptable. If you don't hear back after an additional week, you can reach out again. However, if you don't hear anything after a second week, it's better to stay radio silent. Some companies have a long hiring process.

Is a long hiring process a red flag? ›

A Lack of Consistency In the Hiring Process

Perhaps one of the most common job search red flags candidates observe is a hiring process that's too long, too short, or has a general lack of consistency.

How long is the average hiring process 2022? ›

The average length of the hiring process is 36 days. 65% of companies communicate the importance of a mobile assignment to an employee's career. On average, 55% of the candidates believe it should take less than two weeks from the first interview to a job offer.

Is it normal for hiring process to take months? ›

A process that drags on for months is a sign that something in the hiring process is broken,” Quan said.

What are the signs that you will be hired after an interview? ›

20 Signs You Will Get The Job After An Interview
  • They discuss the next steps. ...
  • They ask when you can start. ...
  • Their body language is positive. ...
  • They contact your references. ...
  • You meet the team. ...
  • You discuss perks and benefits. ...
  • You receive a positive follow-up response. ...
  • You're invited to connect on LinkedIn.
Sep 30, 2022

When should you assume you didn't get the job? ›

Should I just assume I didn't get the job? If you've received no response after a job interview (and you didn't hear back even after you followed up on your job application), it's safe to assume that you didn't get the position and should keep interviewing with other companies.

How do you know if hiring manager wants you? ›

  • The discussion extends beyond what you had anticipated. ...
  • They're not at all distracted. ...
  • Your interviewer asks you questions about your long-term objectives. ...
  • The interviewer speaks specifically about salary and other compensation. ...
  • At the end of the interview, the hiring manager offers positive information about the next step.
Feb 13, 2015

Are job offers made on Fridays? ›

The truth is job offers are made every day of the week. However, Tuesday is the most popular.

How long should you wait to hear from a recruiter? ›

The Short Answer: Follow up between five and 10 business days. This depends on whether you've applied blindly or were referred to this position by somebody in your network. “If you applied blindly, you are somewhat at the mercy of the company and when—and in some cases, if—they choose to respond,” says Dea.

What if recruiter is not responding? ›

If you do not receive a response from the interviewer after several attempts, try emailing the head of the department you interviewed for. As this person has a direct interest in filling the position, they may be more willing to respond to your queries.

Why is the recruiter not responding to me? ›

A recruiter might ghost you if they don't think you're the best fit for the position or if they found a more qualified candidate who better matches their requirements. In more competitive industries with a higher number of candidates, the chances of recruiter ghosting might be higher.

How long does it take HR to approve an offer? ›

There is no fixed rule or standard for how long this process can take. It can be anywhere from a few days to weeks or even over a month. One way to find out how long it will take for HR to approve a job offer is to do some research online on previous employees who may have disclosed this information.

Does the hiring manager or HR make the offer? ›

Hiring managers and recruiters work closely together to hire for open positions. The hiring manager will be your direct supervisor if you are hired. They are the final decision maker on job offers. Your earliest interviews (after the recruiter screening) will likely be with the hiring manager.

What is at the end of hiring process? ›

End-to-end recruitment refers to the entire recruitment process from start to finish. It includes Planning, role defining, sourcing, interviewing, decision making and onboarding.

How do hiring managers make the final decision? ›

The hiring manager will usually hold a meeting to review the ideal candidate profile and to charge the committee. Each member of the screening committee will have their preferences for the qualifications and qualities of the candidate, given how they intersect with the position.

What is final hiring decision? ›

Based on all information gathered during the recruitment and selection process, including résumés, interviews, test results, applicant ratings, reference checks, and the advice of the selection team, decide which candidate best satisfies the pre-established requirements of the vacancy.

How do I check in on a hiring decision? ›

Dear [Hiring Manager's Name], I hope all is well. I just wanted to check in and see if there's an update on the timeline or status for the [job title] position I interviewed for on [date of interview]. I'm still very interested and look forward to hearing back from you.

What to say when you are waiting for hiring decision? ›

If you've waited long enough that you feel compelled to get some feedback, it's okay to call or email the hiring manager and say something along the lines of "I haven't heard from you in a while, so I'm calling to check on whether you have filled the position I interviewed for yet." Then let them take it from there.

What happens after hiring decision is made? ›

After a round of interviews, hiring managers will spend an ample amount of time reviewing applicants and their qualifications before taking next steps. So you may have to wait a few days or weeks to hear whether you're going to receive a job offer or if the company is moving forward with another candidate.

Is it normal to wait 2 weeks after an interview? ›

Even if hiring managers usually make quick decisions, things can happen to slow everything down. Hearing back after two weeks is the norm, but it's not a rule that organizations have to follow. If it's been two weeks after an interview with no response, the hiring team could still be working behind the scenes.

Do successful candidates get told first? ›

Usually, yes. In case that person declines and the employer wants to offer to their second choice. It's possible they might let people know who definitely haven't got the job first, depending on who they can get hold of.

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

Depending on how fast an interviewer wants to finish the hiring process, they might tell you that you are not a good fit for the job. Some of them will say it during the interview while others will just send you an email a few hours after the interview to let you know.

Is no news good news with background checks? ›

When it comes to background checks, “no news is good news.” Unfortunately, chances are that from time to time you will be alerted to something that has shown up in one of your employee's background checks.

Is no news usually good news? ›

No news is good news is a roundabout way of saying that if you have not been told that something bad has happened, then nothing bad has happened. If nothing bad has happened, that is good. So no news is good news.

How long does it take to get a hiring decision? ›

You can usually expect to hear back from the hiring company or HR department within one or two weeks after the interview, but the waiting time varies for different industries.

What to do when hiring manager doesn t respond? ›

Make sure you don't sound like you're telling them they should have gotten back to you sooner. Just keep it polite and short. Say you're checking in, letting them know you're still very interested and asking if there's anything else you could provide them to help with their decision.

What if you had a great interview but haven't heard back? ›

One of the best things you can do is write a short and simple email to your hiring manager. You don't need to be afraid of them feeling annoyed that you followed up if it's been at least a week since your interview (which is how long we recommend waiting before following up).

Should I call if I haven't heard back from a job application? ›

If you haven't heard back about your job application after two weeks, it's perfectly acceptable to call the hiring manager—unless the listing states otherwise. You'll need a different strategy if someone picks up the phone or if you have to leave a voicemail.

Why is the hiring process delayed? ›

Recruiters take an average of 10 days to hire top candidates in the job market because they're in high demand. This is according to an Officevibe study. The faster you move, the better chance you have of hiring the right candidate and avoiding a delayed recruitment process.

How can I speed up my hiring decision? ›

Here is how to do that.
  1. Hiring faster can drive immense improvements. ...
  2. Give your hiring team a service level agreement (SLA) ...
  3. Reduce the number of steps in your interview process. ...
  4. Schedule all the steps ahead of time. ...
  5. Interview until you find the right person, not in batches. ...
  6. Present an offer the day of the last interview.
Jul 19, 2021

How long does HR take to make an offer? ›

On average, the job offer process takes five to seven days. In rare cases, an employer could leave you waiting for multiple weeks before you get a job offer. There's almost always more than one person involved in hiring decisions for an employer, which can lead to additional delays.

Who has the most say in hiring process? ›

And while the recruiter manages the process, it's the hiring manager who actually closes the deal. So, hiring managers are the decision-makers; they have the final say as to who gets hired and who gets rejected. They own the outcome of the recruiting process.

Why do hiring managers not respond? ›

While it's always great to check in with the recruiter, they may not always respond if you're not a top candidate, or if the job has changed or been cancelled. Some recruiters build relationships; some don't and will simply focus on the next job to fill.

How does a hiring manager make a decision? ›

Personality, technical proficiency, education, and cultural fit are just a few of the traits hiring managers consider when deciding which job candidate to hire. During an interview, job candidates are also measured on their accomplishments and potential value to the company.


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