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How to handle a canceled interview

Q: Why would a potential employer cancel an interview later in the day after scheduling it stating that it has been put on hold indefinitely? Does that have something to do with me?

A: There could be several reasons why an interview may be canceled. It may not even be related to you as a candidate. Some of the possible reasons could include:

1. The position is no longer a valid position and the employer has decided not to fill it. Perhaps they have realized there isn’t a need to fill the position and they can operate with the existing staff. Companies are constantly evaluating headcount. Employees are expensive!

2. The position has been filled by an internal person. Sometimes an internal person has raised their hand and expressed an interest in a role within the company.

3. The company knows of an upcoming acquisition and/or merger. The company may be reluctant to hire employees because of the upcoming change. Or the company may be planning to relocate to another geographic area. This location change could also force an employer to re-assess and perhaps delay hiring needs until the move has been completed.

4. The company had decided to hire another candidate. Perhaps they have sourced another candidate with stronger qualifications.

5. The hiring manager may have assumed that they had the authority to hire a replacement when, in fact, the vacancy has not been officially approved.

I could continue listing possible reasons and some may be related to your candidacy or qualifications and some may be completely unrelated.

In short, it would be smart to stay in touch with this employer. Email a note to your contact at this company thanking this person for their time and requesting that they please consider you for future openings. This is an opportunity to demonstrate that you are a true professional. Who knows? This company could contact you again in the future. After all, they expressed initial interest in your resume. However, you also need to continue your search. You can not rely on this vacancy becoming available again.

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