How Long to Hear Back After an Interview?

After the application, comes a single interview or series of interviews, and you wait to hear back. Some recruiters will let you know when they’ll get back to you, but for others it’s uncertain and you’re left wondering when you’ll hear back from them. So how long to hear back?

For companies that do a single interview, the typical wait time is about 2 to 4 weeks, while the companies doing multiple interviews should get back to you in under 2 weeks after each one. This period can vary based on how fast they hire, the number of candidates, the type of job, and the timing (holidays, and such).

It takes longer for state jobs, while the big companies can take the longest. All the big giants such as Facebook and Google will usually have a long hiring process, due to the enormous amount of applications they receive and multiple interviews, which may last up to several months.

Whatever the case, you can always send one email to inquire about when the decision will be made. In the meantime keep applying for other positions, and try to keep your spirits up as you’re leaving your current job.

How Long to Hear Back After Interview?

man interviewing a woman

Time to hear back after an interview can vary based on many factors, but you can expect around 2 to 4 weeks for the company to get back to you. You can check the average response time after interview for several major companies below and some types of jobs:

Company/jobWhen? (interview round)Time to hear back
Amazonafter in-person interview5 business days
Microsoftafter First interview3 to 5 weeks
after Final interviewless than 7 days
Googleafter first interview2 to 3 weeks
after final interviewunder two weeks
Appleafter 1st interviewa week
after 2nd interviewunder a week
after final interview3 to 4 days
Targetafter first interview5 business days
JP Morganafter HireVue1 to 2 weeks
after Superdayunder a week
Deloitteafter first interviewwithin a few days
Goldman Sachsafter superdayunder 2 weeks
after HireVue/interviewfew weeks to several months
Costcoafter final interviewabout a week
Trader Joe'safter first interview2-3 business days
REI Coopafter HireVue interview1 to 3 weeks
McDonald'safter single interviewfew days up to 3 weeks
Government jobafter first interview2 weeks to several months
Civil Serviceafter single interview2 weeks to several months
Law Firmafter first interview1 to 4 weeks depending
Software Engineerafter single interview2 to 4 weeks
after subsequent interviewsunder 2 weeks
Teachersingle interviewabout 1 week

How Long After Phone Interview to Hear Back?

Companies work with different onboarding timelines, but you should typically hear from most companies in under a week after a phone interview. It’s always best to ask the interviewer after the phone interview when can you expect to hear from them, so you know if and when you should follow up.

How Long After an Interview Is a Job Offer Made?

The average time to get a job offer after an interview is usually about 1 to 3 weeks, and it depends on how fast they’re hiring, the number of candidates, and if subsequent interviews are necessary. If they are really interested in you, then you’ll receive an offer relatively quickly.

If there is a 2nd interview then you’ll hear back in 1-2 weeks for another interview, if you get picked for that one. In any case, don’t stop looking until you’ve secured a job.

Similar to interview waiting times, the waiting times after the initial application can be lengthy as well sometimes.

What to Expect During the Second Interview?

Expect new faces interviewing you, more specific questions and follow up on previous ones, weird and tricky questions, salary talk, and discussing the next steps. They’ll ask you how do you manage your time, solve specific problems, handle stress, work on teams, and similar.

How Long to Wait for Job Offer After 2nd Interview?

Depending on the company and the specifics of the interview (how it went, number of candidates left, etc) you may hear something after a few days, up to two weeks. You’ll either be called to the final interview to discuss potential salary, or you may be extended an offer, which you can try to negotiate.

What to expect after the 2nd interview?

Depending on how good of a fit you are for the job compared to other candidates, you might get an offer or you might get called to a 3rd interview. You’ll either respond to more questions or you’ll discuss salary, perks, and final steps to joining that company. 

You may increase your chances by sending a strong, immediate follow-up after your 2nd interview.

Chances of getting job after second interview

Having a second interview usually means there are several candidates left, and they’re bringing you all for the 2nd interview to decide which one to hire. It doesn’t mean you got the job, but there’s a big possibility for that. Treat it as a proper interview, come prepared and make it count.

Signs You Will Receive Job Offer After an Interview

There are a few signals from which you can tell whether the company might pick you for that job position. Here are a few signs that an interview went well:

  • You were able to speak accurately and directly about anything on your resume
  • You answered most of the technical questions accurately (such as questions related your Google or Microsoft Certifications)
  • You came prepared to the interview – you refreshed you skills a bit and it shows as you answered the questions
  • Interviewer probed your skills to its limits with all kinds of difficult questions, and you answered most of them
  • The interviewers were considerate, respectful, they leave time for you to ask questions and give you thoughtful answers
  • They seemed genuinely interested in getting to know you

Most of these signs apply to interviews of all stages, whether first, second or 5th interview. If you experienced most of these, then you probably left an impression of someone who’s a good fit for that job, and you may receive an offer or get called back to talk about potential salary.

Remember that it’s OK to stop speaking during an interview. You don’t have to keep talking, and it’s often better to think about what you’re going to say than to keep on blabbing.

Similarly, it’s good to strike up the conversation about some of the certifications that you might have acquired over the years, such as a relevant computer science certificate.

woman having an interview shaking hands

Signs You Didn’t Get the Job After an Interview

There are a few things from which you can tell whether the company will pick you. Here are some of those signs that may tell you whether you’ve done poorly after one interview:

  • You weren’t able to speak accurately and directly about things written on your resume (you should know every single detail on your resume)
  • You didn’t answer basic technical questions correctly (although some companies might give you a pass, this will usually affect your chances greatly)
  • You lied on your resume and they found out
  • The interviewer cut the interview short based on absolutely no urgency
  • Interviewer is asking dull, pre-written questions, uninterested in your experience, looking at watch, not writing anything down
  • The 2nd interviewer is suddenly “not available”

Some of these signs also apply to the second interview, but you should treat it as a proper interview and come prepared. Many companies have multiple interviews, and you’ll be competing with other potential candidates.

You should know that just because you didn’t get the job, doesn’t mean you did something wrong. It just means there was someone else who was more suitable for the role. Here are some things you should never do if you didn’t get the job.

just because you didn’t get the job, doesn’t mean you did something wrong

Never assume you did terrible, even if the interviewer says something because it usually means very little in terms of whether you’ll get the job or not. Some interviews can be really tough, and just by doing “so-so” could mean you did well.

Should You Follow Up After an Interview?

If the interview is over, and the company has never contacted you or told you when the decision will be made, then it’s ok to follow via a short email, but no more. Keep it short, friendly, and professional.

How Long to Wait After Interview to Follow Up?

If the interviewer said they’d be contacting you on a specific day, and that day is ending, then you should follow up the next day. For example, if they said “Monday”, you should follow up on Tuesday. If they simply said “this week”, then you should follow up next week.

Don’t send multiple emails. The reasoning behind this is simple: being needy is annoying and people don’t like hiring needy people. Additionally, HR is often swamped with work, and you won’t be helping by pushing it.

How do you inquire about a job after an interview?

The best thing you can do immediately after an interview is to say “Thank you for the interview, do you know when the decision will be made?” If you forgot to ask, then you should send an email after an interview saying “Thank you for the interview [today, on Tuesday, etc], do you know when a decision will be made?”

Sending an email is often preferable to phone calls. For the subject line, you can simply put: “Thank you.”

If you didn’t get a response, move on. Do not send additional emails or call them, you can only make things worse. Post-interview silence is quite normal, as HR is often flooded with work during the onboarding process.

Always say “Thank you”, and if there were multiple interviewers, send each of them a professional thank you email. You can also highlight some of the things you spoke about with that particular interviewer.

Here’s a good video on how to follow up after a job interview:

How Long to Wait After Interview Before Giving Up?

Unless a company gives you a timeframe when they’ll be reaching out, assume you didn’t get the job and move on to the next application.

It’s much better mentally for you to keep moving than to stay in one place and keep wondering why there’s no job offer after 2 or 3 weeks. Move on to other jobs and keep applying.

You can find a job on Jooble, or other similar sites such as Glassdoor, Indeed, Google, LinkedIn, or directly at the company’s website. If you get a call from one of the companies that’s great. If not, you have many other options.

The best advice is to always keep moving and looking for a new job until you have a written job offer in front of you. Nothing is certain until you’ve signed and accepted the job. Worst case scenario you have multiple offers and have to let someone down by rejecting them.

Take a look at how to get a job at UPS, USPS, FedEx, or simply how long to become successful creating a business or doing a side gig.

Hiring Process After Interview

The hiring process will typically differ from company to company, but in general, here’s the timeline of what you can expect after an interview for a small to middle company size:

  • Once the interview is completed you wait until you get an offer or a call to answer a few more questions, or discuss potential salary
  • If you don’t hear anything, you can follow up
  • You’ll either be rejected or you’ll be given an offer
  • You can then “attempt” to negotiate or agree to terms
  • If you negotiated you then wait until the final offer and sign it or walk away
  • If you accept the job, you’ll be given dates and clear instructions on what’s next

Do Companies Make Job Offers on Fridays?

Some companies do make job offers on Fridays, but statistically, most of them make offers on Tuesdays. Monday is often a day of catching up on work from the previous week, so may not be perfect to deal with job offers from Friday.

Hiring managers would often make a verbal offer first, so you don’t get to overthink what you want, and try to drastically change your terms. Then they’ll negotiate, and finally create a written offer letter that confirms these terms you negotiated. So think twice about what you say verbally, and make sure you stick to it.

What Time of Day Are Job Offers Usually Made?

There is no specific time of day for job offers, though many companies tend to call during lunch hours or at the end of the workday, especially for currently employed employees. The time of day will depend on the structure of the company’s workdays, the onboarding process, and the HR manager doing the calls. 

The HR manager will call you when they get the time, so there isn’t a rule for them personally.

How Long for HR to Approve Job Offer?

When you accept a job offer, the company sends the paperwork to the HR department to formalize it, which can take anywhere from 5 days to 3 weeks. Once the offer has been processed and formalized, you’ll receive it so you can either try to negotiate or accept it.

Keep in mind, that until you have an offer and a start date, it’s still uncertain whether you’ll get the job. Even if HR tells you they just need to approve it, you shouldn’t stop applying elsewhere, not until you know your start date and have signed an offer in hand.

Author

  • Hi, I'm the founder of HowMonk.com! Having been in finance and tech for 10+ years, I was surprised at how hard it can be to find answers to common questions in finance, tech and business in general. Because of this, I decided to create this website to help others!