8 Signs You Are a Top Candidate After the Interview

Waiting to find out whether you got the job is tough. But interviewers often send strong signals you’ve gotten the job before they give the official word. Here are eight signs that you’ve landed the job or are at least a top candidate.

1. The interviewer checks your references

The interviewer calls your references. This step was the final step for two people who landed the jobs they were seeking. Joe’s interview went well, and he knew he was perfect for the job. But after months of interviewing, his self-confidence was lagging, and he wasn’t sure he’d get an offer. Then Joe found out the interviewer had called his references. Next: they called him to offer the job. Donna’s experience was even better. “I had a future boss tell one of my references that he would call me to begin salary negotiations—a nice heads up that not only did I have the job, I also had room to negotiate salary.”

2. The interviewer discusses moving

The interviewer starts talking about relocation services. At the end of a long day of interviews with several people in three different offices 30 miles apart, Anna’s interviewer dropped a big clue that they were ready to offer her the job. “He began talking about the company’s relocation services, relocation allowances and how to reach the relocation coordinator.”

3. Instead of one interviewer, many

You interview with a lot of people at the company. As above, lots of interviews often equals lots of interest. “Interviewing with many different people is a signal that your main contact is interested and now has to make sure other people agree,” one interviewer said.

4. Interviewer provides next steps

The interviewer is very specific about next steps in the process.  “Instead of a generic, ‘I’ll get back to you for next steps,’ if I’m interested in someone, I will likely tell them, ‘This is what the next steps will look like,’” one interviewer said. “I’ll tell them, ‘You’re going to have to come in for another interview with these people and that’s the final step in the process.’”

5. Interviewer responds to your thank-you email

The interviewer responds to your email saying thank you for the interview. (You did send a thank-you email, right?!) “When I get thank-you emails from people I’m not that interested in, I don’t always respond,” one interviewer said. “Or if I do respond, it’s just something like, ‘Thank you for your note.’ If I’m interested in the candidate, I’ll respond and say I’m very interested.”

6. You shake hands with your future (fingers crossed) coworkers

The interviewer introduces you to other people on the team. “I don’t waste my time on introductions with someone my team is never going to see again,” one interviewer said.

7. You leave the office for a meal

You get taken to lunch or dinner away from the office. “If we have people interviewing here all day, we usually provide a meal,” one interviewer said. “But if we’re trying to get to know someone a little better, we’ll take them out of the office for lunch. That can be a sign of interest.”

8. Interviewer doesn’t rush to get away

The interviewer does more than show you the door. Usually, the recruiter brings candidates to the interviewer. But if he’s interested in a candidate, he will actually get up from his desk. “If I’m really interested, sometimes I will walk the candidate to the elevator or even out of the building instead of thinking ‘I’m done with this candidate, let the recruiter do their job and get you out of the building,’” the interviewer said. Another possible sign: the interview goes over time.

While none of these signs are 100 percent evidence you’ve got a new job, one to three are reason for hope and four or more mean you likely are on at least the short list of candidates.

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