Have Companies You're Interviewing with Gone Dark? Here's Why You Should Follow Up

Reasons Why a Company or Recruiter Hasn’t Responded

The world of recruitment sees dozens of good candidates slip through the cracks; at times, before they even get a chance to chat with a company that reached out to them in the first place. Unfair? Absolutely. Can you do something about it? You bet!

The longer a company or a candidate takes to get back to the other the lower the perceived intent of moving forward by the other party. Consistent follow up ensures steady movement in the recruitment process on both sides.

As a candidate, what are some of the reasons why you might not be hearing back from a company and a signal for you to follow up? Read on.

1. Schedule conflicts

You may recall instances where you have had important meetings be rescheduled or no-shows with clients you try hard to re-book. Interviews are no different.

You set a time and then switched it. They set a time and switched it. Playing phone-tag or getting calendar invites lost in the shuffle certainly comes across as disorganized on their end, but think about whether you’ve honestly stuck to every call you said you were going to take. If so, congrats on the record and keep it up!

Also, a recruiter’s lack of urgency and transparency may not necessarily be an indication of the wider organization. So take your time in assessing the culture rather than pinning it all down to what one recruiter demonstrates.

2. High Volume

This may be one of the few roles you are pursuing at the moment, but you are likely one of many candidates the company is interviewing for multiple roles at a given time. Sometimes they have your skills memorized and can’t wait to talk to you but have forgotten your name amongst a list of many other qualified candidates you are in competition with.

3. Decision Maker is Unavailable

Sometimes the silence makes it feel like nobody is there. Guess what? You might be right! Recruiters and Hiring Managers have lives outside of the office and may be away on vacation and perhaps recruiters are waiting on key decision makers before reaching out again.

Sending a kind note can keep them warm while they wait for the signal internally to push your candidacy forward.

4. Hiring Freeze or Slowdown

Companies will typically loop you in if they have an unexpected hold on a role or have their budgets frozen for a department’s hiring needs. However, they may falter in sharing the news with you.  You may need to re-engage with them to determine their level of interest as well as their timeline to hire.

5. They’re Just Not That Into You

Don’t be discouraged because this goes both ways. If there is persistent silence they may be busy vetting other candidates and keeping you on the back burner. If it’s been days or weeks of silence you should definitely start reviewing your alternatives. However, there is still room for you to reach out and request feedback. The more positive and understanding your note the more likely you are to elicit feedback.

Follow Up After an Interview

Overall, be sure to ask recruiters or hiring managers when they expect the selected individual to be in seat by. Ask when you can expect to hear back so you may time your follow up notes accordingly. Be sure to communicate your own timeline and update employers if there are any changes in your search such as when you receive an offer from another company, especially if there is a deadline on the offer. This may expedite the process if they really want you.

Just as companies are competing for top talent, you are competing for your dream job and many variables may slow down the process. As such, keep an eye out for other roles and don’t put all your eggs in one basket. However, if an opportunity is compelling enough, be sure to communicate your enthusiasm and openness to maintain a relationship while they sort through their process.

Remember, consistent follow up after an interview drives momentum in landing your dream job.

About the Author

Neha Khurram

Career Coach and Recruitment Consultant. Working with employers and helping hundreds of candidates land their dream jobs. You can find more of my content and career-related advice on Instagram @nehakhurram_