Do Hiring Managers Call with Bad News?

Here’s what you need to know about getting called by a hiring manager with bad news.

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You’ve been waiting by the phone for days, maybe even weeks. You’ve done everything right--applied to jobs you’re qualified for, tweaked your resume, and followed up after interviews. So why haven’t you heard anything? The waiting game is hard enough, but it’s even worse when you don’t know what’s going on. In that case, you might start to wonder: “Do hiring managers call with bad news?”

Generally speaking, the answer is yes. If a hiring manager has decided that you’re not the right fit for a position, they’ll likely call or email you to let you know. They understand how frustrating the job search process can be, and they don’t want to leave you hanging.

Of course, there are always exceptions to the rule. In some cases, hiring managers might not have time to reach out to everyone who wasn’t selected for a role. Or, they might feel like it’s unnecessary since they’ve already notified the candidates who are moving forward in the process.

If you haven’t heard back after applying or interviewing for a job and it’s been more than a couple of weeks, it’s probably safe to assume that you didn’t get the gig. However, there’s no harm in sending a polite follow-up email just to be sure. In your message, thank the hiring manager for their time and express your interest in future opportunities at the company.

The Bad News

You’ve been waiting by the phone all day long. You’re anxious, excited, and nervous all at the same time. The call finally comes and you answer it with shaking hands. “Hello?” The voice on the other end of the line says, “I’m sorry to inform you, but you didn’t get the job.”

You’re Not the Only One

If you didn’t get the job, don’t think that you’re the only one who didn’t. The vast majority of job seekers don’t get the first job they apply for. And, unfortunately, many job seekers never hear back from the employer at all. So, if you receive a call from a hiring manager with bad news, take it in stride and know that you’re not alone.

The hiring manager’s perspective

While it’s never fun to get bad news, it is a reality of the job search process. Hiring managers are often the bearer of bad news, whether it’s informing a candidate they didn’t get the job or that their application is no longer being considered. While there is no easy way to deliver bad news, there are certain strategies that hiring managers can use to make the experience as bearable as possible for both parties.

For starters, it’s important to be clear and concise when delivering bad news. Hiring managers should avoid beating around the bush or sugarcoating the message. The goal is to get straight to the point so that the candidate can move on from the experience. Additionally, hiring managers should be prepared to answer any questions the candidate may have about the decision. Open communication will help put the candidate at ease and provide closure on the situation.

Finally, it’s important to show empathy when delivering bad news. Hiring managers should remember that candidates are people too and that they are likely feeling disappointed and even embarrassed about not getting the job. A little empathy can go a long way in making the situation more bearable for everyone involved.

The Good News

Hiring Managers don’t always have bad news when they call. Sometimes they just want to update you on the status of your application or tell you that they received your resume and will keep it on file for future openings.

You’re Not the Only One

Trust us, you’re not the only job seeker who gets anxious about whether or not the hiring manager is going to call with bad news. We’ve all been in your shoes, and we know how it feels. You’ve been waiting by the phone for days, maybe even weeks, and you’re starting to lose hope.

We’re here to tell you that it’s not necessarily a bad sign if the hiring manager hasn’t called yet. In fact, there could be a number of perfectly good reasons why they haven’t called. Maybe they’ve been swamped with other projects and haven’t had a chance to review your file yet. Maybe they’re waiting to hear back from references before making a decision. Or maybe they just haven’t made up their minds yet and are still deliberating.

Whatever the reason, try not to read too much into it if the hiring manager hasn’t called when you were expecting them to. The best thing you can do is wait patiently and remain positive. The call will come eventually, and hopefully it will be with good news!

The hiring manager’s perspective

As a hiring manager, I often have to give bad news to candidates. It’s never easy, but I try to be as respectful and professional as possible. I understand that it can be very disappointing to receive a rejection, but I hope that the candidates understand that it’s nothing personal. We just have to make the best decision for the company.


While it’s not pleasant to receive bad news, it is better to hear it from the hiring manager directly so that you can ask questions and clarify any misunderstanding. If the hiring manager does not call you after a negative decision has been made, it is probably best to reach out to them so that you can ask for feedback and learn what you could do differently in the future.

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