This is a common question that crosses every interviewee's mind. How do you know when a job interview has done well? Bad signs can be subjective, but there are a few surefire signs that you are a final candidate. When it comes to whittling down the pool, you want to know that you are in the running.
Here is how you can make yourself feel more relieved after you finish an interview. Replay it in your head and go through the below:
1. Your Interview Went Over
This is generally a good sign that the hiring manager shows interest. Most of the time, the interviewer has a busy schedule. Taking the time to get to know the interviewee means that they want to know more about you. This will help them decide if you are the right fit. If they see no hope or prospects, they will cut the interview short.
Personal tip: Your initial interview maybe with an internal recruiter — Human Resources. This could be a phone interview or face-to-face meeting. In which case, this process could be faster. As part of a potential first step of the interview, they may go through your resume with you for starters.
2. You Bonded with the Interviewer
Body language goes a long way to tell you if the hiring manager takes a liking to you. Also, they do not have to like you, but can show interest in you. This would come in the form of nodding to show that they are listening and making eye contact. There may be possible note-taking and most likely they will be in an open-stance. Not with crossed-arms. If they show interest, they may even lean forward. Creating rapport with the interviewer is important. Follow the same attributes. Plus, hold a dialogue rather than a back-and-forth question-and-answer session.
Personal tip: Comment and ask questions to help the conversation flow. This will naturally lead to the next topic. Or you can find similarities in your interest or resume when you do research on their background. Take a look at their company or LinkedIn profile.
3. They Tried to "Sell" You on the Company & Role
If a company is keen to bring you on, they will flaunt their organisation and the position. Why? Because they want to draw you in. They are showing that the role and job package are attractive. They can do this by mentioning extra details not mentioned in the job description. They may also talk about your career growth and future prospects within the company. They want to get you excited to work for them and see you as one of the winning candidates that they might like to lock-in.
4. The Hiring Manager Was Job-Specific
What does this mean? This means that the interviewer focused on the role at hand. That is the position you are being interviewed for. Why does it matter? Because the interviewer will be testing to see your reaction and knowledge of the role. They will want to know that you are familiar with the job description. This is the chance for you to ask questions to show your further interest. The interviewer could already envision you in the role as a prime candidate. Signs of this are asking how you would approach a situation or strategy.
5. They Asked for Your Availability
The interviewer may ask for your availability in the near future. This could be for return interviews — the next step. Or this could mean they want to know when is the soonest you can start. Questions about your notice period will give them an indication of when you can make a move. If you are transitioning from one job to another, this will give them a heads up. If you are between jobs, they will also be able to plan in advance any final steps depending on your schedule. This is often a question that is asked towards the end of an interview. So a good sign is that they do not rush this question or yourself out of the door.
Personal tip: In some circumstances, the hiring manager has a busy schedule. In which case, you will need to take the time element into account, as they may truly be on crunchtime. The interviewer may need to rush into a meeting or even into the next interview. Remain courteous and grateful.
6. You Met the Scheduled Interviewers
Before your interview, you might have been notified that you will be meeting a few people. There could be a hierarchy in the company, which means you could be jumping through hoops. There could be a recruiter, hiring manager, and direct report. All of these people are important to impress and each one will pass on their comments to the next person. A good sign is that you have passed each stage. This means that you have met with the important parties that are the decision-makers.
Personal tip: It is not a be-all, end-all if you do not end up meeting all of the scheduled interviewers. Why? Because sometimes things crop-up, such as an urgent deadline has been pushed forward. Someone may not be able to get out of an important meeting or somebody falls ill.
7. You Get a Call Back
If you have gone through an external recruiter and you get a call back with positive feedback, that is a great sign. An interviewer will not waste time and will be honest. If positive feedback is shared soon after, you can take this as a sign that you may be one of the final candidates.
What to Do Next?
1. You Receive a Phone Call or Email
You will never know what the final outcome is unless you hear the good news directly. A future employer may share with you that you have landed the role. They may extend this invitation to you to join their company verbally before they send it in writing. This is known as a job offer letter. Of course, the safest way to secure a job is to get it written in black and white. Then there is the negotiation phase and contract signing.
2. Continue Applying for Jobs
Do not put all of your eggs in one basket. It is risky and time-consuming to sit and wait for a few job applications to come back with a job interview. Keep your options open and apply to jobs that spark your interest. The more applications you put out there that are up your alley, the higher the chances are for interviews. Want to ace your job application skills? Read A Guide to Writing Job Application Letters (With Template).