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Post job interview etiquette

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Three weeks ago I interviewed for a position I was very excited about. It was the third interview, two phone interviews previous then face to face. It was a five hour process with eight different people. It started off slowly but by the end I was all but certain I had the job. The person I'd be reporting to literally walked me to HR to discuss next steps (the person we needed wasn't there). So I left believing I was taking the next step in my career. 

I knew they had several candidates but growing impatient, I texted the person I'd be reporting to and asked what the timeline was for this process. She told me a couple weeks. So two weeks later I emailed HR to check on my status. No response. I texted another person I interviewed with and he claimed they had another person to interview. So I reached out to another contact in the industry who knows the involved parties and he's going to poke around to find out what the deal is. 

So did I screw this up (post interview) as none of you should know how that went? 

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This sounds like post Thanksgiving year end delays.  It doesn’t sound like u did anything wrong, but I’m no expert.  I just know how hard it is to get decisions from people and businesses during the holidays.

 

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Minor alarm bells.  Not major.  Ideally you’d have knocked it out of the park and they would have canceled the interview with the last candidate.

You did the right thing reaching out to them.  Let’s them know you are sincerely excited and interested.

And yeah, with a holiday stuck in there they might just be behind their timelines.

 

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There is nothing wrong with how you handled the situation.  Following up is recommended after a reasonable time has passed (that is just how you feel about it), especially if it was open-ended.  It would have been good, but not easy, to try to pin down the timing for the next steps at the end of their interview.

Asking that final person to poke around may be a bit further than I would have gone, but it's probably not going to blow up on you.  It's a very fine line between being seen as keen and being too pushy.

I hope this is not the case for you, Inky, but from my experience this often means that some executive's kid needs a job and they want to give it to them.  Often this is all but arranged and the company goes through the interview process to make it look good and, maybe, meet some legal requirements.

That said, as others have pointed out, this time of year everything is basically shut down.

I'll be thinking of you and hope for the best.

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Hang tight, hiring related processes can be quite inefficient at times. My suggestion is that on the day it's 3 weeks after you had initially texted the hiring manager, send an email to them simply explaining you are checking in on status (no need to point out how long it's taking them, they already know).  (maybe texting is OK too but in my age/culture that's a level of informality reserved for current employees not prospects but maybe that's different in your world). 

 

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15 minutes ago, New Scotland (NS) said:

There is nothing wrong with how you handled the situation.  Following up is recommended after a reasonable time has passed (that is just how you feel about it), especially if it was open-ended.  It would have been good, but not easy, to try to pin down the timing for the next steps at the end of their interview.

Asking that final person to poke around may be a bit further than I would have gone, but it's probably not going to blow up on you.  It's a very fine line between being seen as keen and being too pushy.

I hope this is not the case for you, Inky, but from my experience this often means that some executive's kid needs a job and they want to give it to them.  Often this is all but arranged and the company goes through the interview process to make it look good and, maybe, meet some legal requirements.

That said, as others have pointed out, this time of year everything is basically shut down.

I'll be thinking of you and hope for the best.

I found out this morning that this may be close to the truth. Apparently they have an internal candidate they are pursuing who used to be in that role or something similar. I really wish this would end regardless of the outcome. 

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56 minutes ago, Weave said:

Minor alarm bells.  Not major.  Ideally you’d have knocked it out of the park and they would have canceled the interview with the last candidate.

I wouldn’t be too worried about this. It’s a myth in many industries in my young experience. Because of rules and regulations so many interviews are required as part of the process and hiring managers I work with and recruiters I’m friends with say they don’t EVER do this, even if they know they have the one.

I knew I had the job I got within days but I wasn’t hired for two months because they had to interview other candidates still.

Best of luck, though, man.

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1 hour ago, New Scotland (NS) said:

There is nothing wrong with how you handled the situation.  Following up is recommended after a reasonable time has passed (that is just how you feel about it), especially if it was open-ended.  It would have been good, but not easy, to try to pin down the timing for the next steps at the end of their interview.

Asking that final person to poke around may be a bit further than I would have gone, but it's probably not going to blow up on you.  It's a very fine line between being seen as keen and being too pushy.

I hope this is not the case for you, Inky, but from my experience this often means that some executive's kid needs a job and they want to give it to them.  Often this is all but arranged and the company goes through the interview process to make it look good and, maybe, meet some legal requirements.

That said, as others have pointed out, this time of year everything is basically shut down.

I'll be thinking of you and hope for the best.

Frankly, this is what I suspect is happening. But I could put a different spin on it and say that they might have had someone else pegged for the job but Inky interviewed well enough to make it difficult for them. Whoever is doing the hiring must have some hoops to jump through with higher-ups. 

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I had one go like this on me. I applied online for a job, did a short interview with an outside recruiter who then set me up with the manager for the position. The spot was new in this company so they weren't even completely firm on what it was going to look like, but it sounded interesting. Met with the manager and it went really well. He said he had a few more interviews but I'd hear back soon.

A week or so later I get contacted by the recruiter again that they want me for a second interview and they'd like me to prepare a little plan of how I'd go about starting up this position. Did it, knocked the second interview out of the park. Manager was impressed with my plan and we got on well personally.

A few days go by and I get contacted that the job is essentially mine, just need to meet with the CIO and get a sign up. I meet him, goes fine, wasn't even much of an interview as much as it was talking about the company and job. It seemed like a formality. Recruiter said the same thing, the job is mine, we'll contact you with the official offer when they put it together. I was all in, prepping myself for it. Like, I was telling friends and family. Luckily I didn't tell my employer at the time(definitely don't do that until you have a firm offer in writing).

Weeks go by, I hear nothing. I contact the recruiter and ask and he says we're still on for it, don't worry they want you, just doing some paper work and so-and-so been's out of town, etc.

More weeks. Ask again, get the same answer. Then I let a month go and essentially said "listen, I really want this job, but I'm not going to wait around forever, can you please find out what's happening or else I'll have to start looking elsewhere".

Finally the recruiter comes back and says "They decided not to create the position." Basically CIO thought it wasn't essential (it really is) and just dragged his heals on making that decision. Recruiter and manager both felt bad they dragged me along, but I was pretty pissed.

A couple months later and I got a job that I'm much happier with anyways, but that still bugs me.

Edited by sabills

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3 hours ago, inkman said:

I found out this morning that this may be close to the truth. Apparently they have an internal candidate they are pursuing who used to be in that role or something similar. I really wish this would end regardless of the outcome. 

No kidding.  Well, at some point you should think about and decide if this is the place you want to work.  I have turned down / withdrawn my candidacy for jobs that I wanted, even needed, just because of all the stress and BS.  If it is like this before hand when everyone is on their best behviour what would it be like afterwards.

1 hour ago, darksabre said:

Frankly, this is what I suspect is happening. But I could put a different spin on it and say that they might have had someone else pegged for the job but Inky interviewed well enough to make it difficult for them. Whoever is doing the hiring must have some hoops to jump through with higher-ups. 

On the other hand, dark coming in with the other hand.

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1 hour ago, sabills said:

I had one go like this on me. I applied online for a job, did a short interview with an outside recruiter who then set me up with the manager for the position. The spot was new in this company so they weren't even completely firm on what it was going to look like, but it sounded interesting. Met with the manager and it went really well. He said he had a few more interviews but I'd hear back soon.

A week or so later I get contacted by the recruiter again that they want me for a second interview and they'd like me to prepare a little plan of how I'd go about starting up this position. Did it, knocked the second interview out of the park. Manager was impressed with my plan and we got on well personally.

A few days go by and I get contacted that the job is essentially mine, just need to meet with the CIO and get a sign up. I meet him, goes fine, wasn't even much of an interview as much as it was talking about the company and job. It seemed like a formality. Recruiter said the same thing, the job is mine, we'll contact you with the official offer when they put it together. I was all in, prepping myself for it. Like, I was telling friends and family. Luckily I didn't tell my employer at the time(definitely don't do that until you have a firm offer in writing).

Weeks go by, I hear nothing. I contact the recruiter and ask and he says we're still on for it, don't worry they want you, just doing some paper work and so-and-so been's out of town, etc.

More weeks. Ask again, get the same answer. Then I let a month go and essentially said "listen, I really want this job, but I'm not going to wait around forever, can you please find out what's happening or else I'll have to start looking elsewhere".

Finally the recruiter comes back and says "They decided not to create the position." Basically CIO thought it wasn't essential (it really is) and just dragged his heals on making that decision. Recruiter and manager both felt bad they dragged me along, but I was pretty pissed.

A couple months later and I got a job that I'm much happier with anyways, but that still bugs me.

This happened to me too. Was told I was the decided candidate for a new role, then heard nothing about it for months until they finally let on that they decided to change the requirements for the job and that they are starting over. I only found out because I called them, i'm pretty sure they were just planning on ghosting me and not letting me know at all that the position no longer exists.

I was not pleased...

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Send a thank you letter to the hiring manager (google it for content ideas/format).

If it's a big company, the offer generation process could be very slow, particularly around the holidays when people are absent.  A small company could move faster, but is also susceptible to missing people.

Accept the fact that they may have scheduled several interviews over a couple weeks.  This can happen for jobs with very exacting requirements, as candidates may need to travel to interview OR the company may be having a difficult time finding qualified applicants.  Larger companies may require a minimum number of candidates be interviewed.

Also understand the fact that good interviews are subjective.  I'm not saying you didn't kill it, but the interviewers may have been looking for something.  Bias, nepotism, and bad chemistry are all real things that exist in hiring managers.  They may be dumb enough to not hire you.

Nevertheless, remain open and optimistic about your chances.  Don't be resentful if an offer doesn't arrive within your expected window.  But that said, you have your own extremely valid career goals to meet in your schedule, so definitely don't wait for these guys if there are other opportunities you want to explore.

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I have about 14 people that I'm considering for a Cisco help desk position down here in Orlando (if anyone wants to relocate ) and we're just so busy that it's time consuming - if they're interested they'll reach out to you...

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Between the holidays and internal culture, you have followed up enough and without being pushy IMHO.  It may be they had already ID'd a candidate, but you might have caused them dissonance.  Depending on the culture, they might not go fast and might have several meetings on how to proceed.  You will just have to wait or decide to move on.  If they contact you later than your gut tells you is reasonable, it might give you some room to negotiate perks/salary because they have then put themselves in a weaker position.  I would feel the latter out if it develops that way.

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Did you send in hand written thank you notes to everyone you met with on your in-person interview?

I would have done that, but beyond that, there isn't much you can do.

Some organizations are notoriously slow, lazy, sloppy, disorganized when it comes to hiring. 

Good luck.

 

 

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20 minutes ago, Kruppstahl said:

Did you send in hand written thank you notes to everyone you met with on your in-person interview?

I would have done that, but beyond that, there isn't much you can do.

Some organizations are notoriously slow, lazy, sloppy, disorganized when it comes to hiring. 

Good luck.

 

 

I know that it is, generally, considered to be 'old fashioned' to do this, but I am old and, rather, fashionable.

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25 minutes ago, New Scotland (NS) said:

I know that it is, generally, considered to be 'old fashioned' to do this, but I am old and, rather, fashionable.

tumblr_pgucju2gXV1xfddi7o3_250.gif

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From what you describe you have done everything correctly and well.

For future reference there are some extra that you could do as you said others were involved in the interview for this job.

You should ask what peoples roles are and would this position work with them. Always get every ones contact information and send them all a thank you note(email would suffice) for taking the time out of their busy days to interview you not to long after the interview.  The ones you know this job would work with ( I am assuming you asked some things about the interaction and roles) you should reference in the thank you enforcing some of the points you learned in the interview process.   In my experience a good candidate is interviewing the company and it's not just us interviewing them. 

 

Good luck.   

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40 minutes ago, R_Dudley said:

From what you describe you have done everything correctly and well.

For future reference there are some extra that you could do as you said others were involved in the interview for this job.

You should ask what peoples roles are and would this position work with them. Always get every ones contact information and send them all a thank you note(email would suffice) for taking the time out of their busy days to interview you not to long after the interview.  The ones you know this job would work with ( I am assuming you asked some things about the interaction and roles) you should reference in the thank you enforcing some of the points you learned in the interview process.   In my experience a good candidate is interviewing the company and it's not just us interviewing them. 

 

Good luck.   

I forgot to include I sent emails to everyone that gave me their card plus HR thanking them for their time. With the inclusion of the role they are interviewing for requires the right individual and I believe a am that individual. 

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1 hour ago, inkman said:

I forgot to include I sent emails to everyone that gave me their card plus HR thanking them for their time. With the inclusion of the role they are interviewing for requires the right individual and I believe a am that individual. 

Good form, one more thing, it is not considered bad to ask your main HR contact in this process for the contact email or info for individuals who did not have a business card or that maybe your talks went so well you ran out of time and missed asking before they passed you along.

 

Last enough other's said this but the way this suddenly turned on you does smack of some last minute internal candidate politically connected that needs to be considered or is being pushed into the position. 

Regardless if its just a delay or someone being told who to hire its always good form to leave that lasting professional, motivated impression in case the individual really flubs it in 6-12 months and they need to do this again in the future. 

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I waited a year and a half for the position I'm in now.  Lots of hoops to jump through and I declined the first location they offered.  Might just be a waiting game. If it's not and they had someone else in mind the entire time and strung people along in the process, ***** em, they're not worthy of your services.

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4 hours ago, inkman said:

I forgot to include I sent emails to everyone that gave me their card plus HR thanking them for their time. With the inclusion of the role they are interviewing for requires the right individual and I believe a am that individual. 

You're good.  Don't send fruitcake for the holidays.  You did fine, and if you merit the job (and if there isn't a secret candidate in the background), you'll get it.

Hang in there.

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On 12/5/2018 at 11:44 PM, inkman said:

Three weeks ago I interviewed for a position I was very excited about. It was the third interview, two phone interviews previous then face to face. It was a five hour process with eight different people. It started off slowly but by the end I was all but certain I had the job. The person I'd be reporting to literally walked me to HR to discuss next steps (the person we needed wasn't there). So I left believing I was taking the next step in my career. 

I knew they had several candidates but growing impatient, I texted the person I'd be reporting to and asked what the timeline was for this process. She told me a couple weeks. So two weeks later I emailed HR to check on my status. No response. I texted another person I interviewed with and he claimed they had another person to interview. So I reached out to another contact in the industry who knows the involved parties and he's going to poke around to find out what the deal is. 

So did I screw this up (post interview) as none of you should know how that went? 

I had a similar situation a while back...after 3 weeks I basically figured I didn't get it, but then after 2 more weeks they called me and told me they wanted to offer me the position...lots of approvals, etc were needed or something...either way I took the job.

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The hiring process, regardless of the size of the company or association, is so flawed today that it seems many more people are "underemployed" than ever before.  It's a nerve-wracking, dehumanizing process, as you've spelled out.  I wish you nothing but success going forward in your quest.  

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I actually had a recruiter from a much bigger city reach out to me recently and did an interview yesterday over the phone. They offered an in-person which I denied because the pay doesn’t match the jump in cost of living nearly enough... but that was the first time I’ve been approached by a recruiter which was a nice experience.

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