Q: About six weeks ago, I interviewed for what I thought was the perfect job. I thought the interviews went well, and I had six interviews in all. The hiring team told me a decision would be made by early December.
Now at year-end, I have no information. I have followed up with manager, the HR Rep, etc. The HR Rep said that she had been out for a medical issue, but I should know around Christmas. Still nothing. I have emailed them and left voicemails. I have been professional in all of my correspondence. Still no update.
A: You sound very frustrated, which is understandable. I often explain to our clients that every day to a candidate, feels like a week. It is disheartening that you have not heard back, especially since you invested so much time in the selection process.
It is difficult to explain, but sometimes we call this the “black hole” or “ghosting.” Suddenly the communication evaporates and a candidate is left hanging. It is unprofessional and discouraging. Every candidate, who participates in the selection process, should be aware of where they stand. This does not mean every candidate who applies should receive an update. When a job is posted, over 100 responses can be received. My advice to hiring manager is not to respond to the 100 candidates, but instead focus on your top few, who are likely the most qualified. It is imperative that employers provide updates to candidates, who have participated in the interview process.
In your situation, any one (or a combination of all) could have occurred:
- The company could have hired another candidate.
- The role could have been put on hold, and the company is no longer recruiting for the role.
- The HR Rep could still be soliciting feedback from the selection team. This takes time, especially in late December and early January.
- The HR Rep may be pre-occupied with other pressing distractions.
I have one piece of feedback to share. I am concerned about the quality and grammar of any possible communication with this company. I had to revise and edit your original Job Doc question dramatically. There were several typos, and grammatical errors. Of course, submitting a question on-line to the Job Doc is not the same as your communications with a prospective employer, but I would suggest reviewing your emails, etc. to ensure that you have your grammar and spell check functions “turned on” when you are drafting an email or a word document. Additionally, you may want to have a trusted friend or colleague proofread your thank-you emails. I don’t know for sure, but that may have been a factor in your candidacy.
Pattie Hunt Sinacole is a human resources expert and works for First Beacon Group in Hopkinton, an HR consulting firm. She contributes weekly to Boston.com Jobs and the Boston Sunday Globe Money & Careers section.