The job interview process is frustrating. There is no other way to describe it. Whether you’re a fresh grad or you’ve been working for a while, you’ve probably felt the draining power of a job interview. It takes more than one round of interviews to determine if they like you, and even if you reach the last stage, they might not even hire you. Not to mention that no two interviews are alike so you never know what to expect.
Eventually though, you get that call back you’ve been waiting for – that one call back telling you that you landed the job makes everything worth it. But what if you don’t get the call? What if you keep applying and nothing happens?
We hate to break it to you, but if you’re not getting a call back for interviews then you might be doing something wrong. Don’t worry, we’re here to help you figure out what it is exactly!
The Muse’s Lily Zhang takes you through the application process to figure out why you’re not getting a call back in her article, “3 Reasons You Keep Getting Interviews, But No Offers”.
Here are ideas on why you keep getting interviews but no job offers:
1. You’re not getting any calls
If you’re doggedly applying to lots of companies with not a single invitation for interview, chances are, there must be something not quite right with your resume.
First, ask yourself if your credentials and experience fits the job position. If you’re not qualified for the job, your chances for getting a call back are slim. But if you’re sure that you’re a good fit for the position, then you should take a second look at your resume and cover letter.
Make sure your resume and cover letter are tailored to target each of the positions you’re applying for. If you’re resume and cover letter are too general then your potential employer will assume that you were too lazy to customize your application and will probably be a lazy employee too. Also do a quick review of your resume to make sure you’re not doing common mistakes that can easily make your resume classified as a non-option.
Next, consider using your network. Yes, networking can be uncomfortable and awkward, but it may be one of your best chances at landing a job. Networking can give you leads on which of your target companies have openings in your field and you may use your network to get the word out that a qualified applicant (that means you) is interested in the position.
2. You can’t get past the first interview
If you are getting invited to interviews, then you probably have a rather impressive resume since you caught the hiring specialist’s attention. However, your problem may lie in how you present yourself or convey your stories during interviews.
Whether your interview is in person or through the phone, you need to be able to present yourself as the ideal candidate for the position. While your resume already speaks volumes about your abilities (which is why you scored an interview!), you need to show them your personality too. Remember, in any job position, your intelligence and skills can only take you so far. Your personality will also play a huge part in your career trajectory.
So how do you present all of this in an interview? Through good, old practice, of course! Hiring specialists usually ask a common set of questions to get a feel of your character. Prepare your answers for these questions and begin practicing with yourself or with a friend. You will become more confident as you get a feel of what HR personnel are looking for. Don’t forget to make it a conversation, too! Don’t be afraid to ask questions about the position and the company. They will see that you’re definitely interested in the job and that you’re eager to learn more.
3. You’re stuck in the final interview round
So companies definitely like you enough to talk to you a good number of times and you’ve even reached the final interview! Unfortunately, you’ve reached it one too many times without a job offer. What gives?
At this point in the interview process, the final decision rests in how well you understand your position, your role in your team, and your role in the company. They already know that your credentials are pretty solid, so it’s a matter of figuring out if you will be a good fit with the company. So how do you do this?
Research! And research well. Get to know the company that you want to work for. Research the company history and culture well in advance so you can determine if you will potentially be a good fit. Ask questions about the team’s dynamics and convey your eagerness and suitability to join this team. The people who are interviewing you want to know if you’re all on the same page when it comes to understanding the work you will be doing and the people you will be working with. If you want the job, then show them that you want it.
Now, you have a better idea of what you can tweak in your job interview process. Whether your misstep lies in your resume, your first interview, or last interview, it’s good to pinpoint what you may be doing wrong so you change it in future interviews. Remember, the job interview process is iterative. If you don’t get it this time, you’ll get it next time.
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