How Long After Interview To Hear Back (And Why)?

Exact answer: Approximately two to three weeks

Interviews are conducted by recruiters to get to know the applicant in a much more nuanced and in-depth manner. They also test the technical proficiency of the individual applying for the job. Usually, job interviews may be preceded by several rounds of group discussions or written tests.

Scrutinizing the competency of the applicant is the main rationale for the interview. Interviews for different jobs and industries will have variegated time periods of waiting. However, most industries do have a gap between the time the interview happens and the selection list goes up. The HR department is responsible for contacting the selected individuals.

How Long After Interview To Hear Back

How Long After Interview To Hear Back?

The time period of waiting after an interview may be contingent on a list of variegated factors. The particular industry under consideration, total vacancy listings, number of applicants, etc. may be important determinants of the time taken to hear back from the recruiter.

Similarly, the outcome of the interview will also determine the time taken to hear back from the recruiting firm. Thus, formulating a conclusive timeline is difficult. However, that being said, it is possible to devise a more or less accurate framework of waiting that is applicable to most interview regimes across industrial segments.

Usually, if the vacant position has few competing applicants, then they are generally made aware of their status by the end of the session. In most such jobs interviews, the recruiter makes the interviewee aware of whether he is happy or unhappy with his performance. Thus, by the end, the person may either be hired or rejected on spot.

However, there may also be certain opportunities like government jobs or engineering ones, where there are hundreds of applicants. Such jobs would require the individual to wait for about 2 to 3 weeks before they reveal the status of the person. This time period does not exceed 3 weeks.

The general norm is that the interviewee will either know the result of the process by the end of the session or within 3 weeks after the entire interview process is completed. If there is no response even after 3 weeks, it generally means that the firm has decided to move in a different direction and the individual must try for other opportunities.


In summary:

Number of ApplicantsWaiting Time
FewNo waiting
ManyUp to 3 weeks

Why Do You Have To Wait So Long After Interview To Hear Back?

The time gap between an interview and hearing back from the company may be due to several reasons. Most of these reasons are derived from the bureaucratic nature of companies. The bureaucratic chain of command, the need to record and verify documents, etc. may be time-consuming.

When interviewing for positions that have multiple rounds of interviews and presentations, it is quite common to expect a delay of 3 weeks before the final decision is revealed. The rationale for this is that there are several notable candidates and it takes the management some time to select the best of the best.

After all the interviews are completed, the recruiting personnel may cross-reference the applicants to see who would be the most qualified and most appropriate for the position. This deliberation process can take a while. Thus, the decision may be delayed by 2 to 3 weeks.


However, when the number of applicants for a job is few, there is a strong possibility that the recruiters find on-spot evaluation more conclusive than long-term deliberations. In such cases, the applicant will know whether he or she is selected or rejected by the end of the interview session. Sometimes recruiters may announce their decision even at the end of the day when all the applicants have been interviewed.

The delay in hearing back from a recruiter is in-built into the interviewing process. It is always prudent to keep appearing for vacant positions as an applicant until one hears back positive news from one of the firms.


Each prospective applicant for a job opening has to go through a rigorous process of interviewing before he or she is given the post. This may take quite some time. Similarly, after the interview is over, it may again take a while for the company to get back to the individual in question.

On average, the more or less standard period of waiting after an interview is 2 to 3 weeks. Some recruiters may get back to the individual within 5 days of the interview, while others may take longer to get back to interviewees. It is prudent to thus wait for a maximum of 3 weeks after an interview to hear back. If one is not contacted within this period, the answer probably is negative.


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