Here’s what to do during the agonizing time between having an interview and finding out whether or not you got the job.

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You finished your job interview and were excited about how it went. Then you waited for that important call back from the hiring manager or HR recruiter. And you waited. And waited. And then waited some more. “Now what do I do?” you wonder.

Determine your follow-up plan. Because you’ve already learned how to close an interview, you’ll have asked the hiring manager about his or her next steps in the hiring process and the time frame for the hiring decision. Use this information to make a note in your calendar on the day you expect to hear back from the employer.

If you haven’t heard anything within two or three business days after the hiring decision was to have been made, send a thoughtfully worded email to the hiring manager, reiterating your interest in the position and checking in on his or her progress in the hiring process. If you were working with a recruiter or someone in HR, first send a follow-up email directly to him or her (before you contact the hiring manager).

If your email doesn’t elicit any response, call the person. Prior to calling the recruiter or hiring manager, prepare what you’ll say, be it live or in a voice mail message. Write this down and have it handy when you make the call. If you leave a voice mail message and haven’t heard back from the employer after several more days or even weeks, it’s most likely time for you to move on to other job opportunities.

Learn from it and move on. Unfortunately, not every employer treats job candidates with due respect by notifying all those who went through the interview process after a hiring decision has been made. When you don’t hear back from an employer after both email and telephone follow-up attempts, you should move on to other opportunities and think about what you’ve learned about that employer. How you were treated during the hiring process (and afterwards) could be a reflection of the company’s overall culture — and is that how you want to be treated as an employee if you worked there?

Remember, interviewing is a two-way street. The employer is trying to find the candidate that is the best fit, but it’s your responsibility to determine if the hiring manager, department and company are a good fit for you.

Lisa Quast is the founder of Career Woman, Inc., and the author of the book Secrets of a Hiring Manager Turned Career Coach. Email her at