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Following up with Recruiter asking for more time, acceptable?

Actively preparing for interviews with McKinsey Experienced Hire
New answer on Aug 14, 2020
5 Answers
1.1 k Views
Anonymous A asked on Aug 10, 2020


First of all, I greatly appreciate this community. I wanted to ask - after going through the firm's mock interview, I knew I needed more time to practice before the phone assessment. The recruiter told me to take my time before I schedule. It has been a few weeks since then, but I think I need more practice time. Should I follow up with the recruiter to show that I am still actively practicing, and not blowing their process off? Also, is time detrimental to the process? I'm not sure if they have a certain cap to positions considering they are letting the candidates choose the length of their interview period.

Thanks for the help!

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Content Creator
replied on Aug 11, 2020
#1 BCG coach | MBB | Tier 2 | Digital, Tech, Platinion | 100% personal success rate (8/8) | 95% candidate success rate


They would also like you to be prepared so this shouldn't be a problem at all!

However, i wouldn't just reach out saying "I'm still practicing, I need more time".

Rather, figure out, realistically, how much time you need (a coach can help you with this. I'd be happy to provide an example).

Then, in your email to the recruiter, let them know you'll be ready in x weeks and would like to schedule an interview for that date.

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Anonymous A on Aug 11, 2020

Thank you for the response, will do!

Anonymous replied on Aug 12, 2020

Dear A,

Yes, you can ask for postponing the time of your interview. But here I would recommend you first to define this time for yourself, so that you can clearly communicate it to others (HR).

If you need any help with structured feedback or assessing your real level for the preparation, feel free to reach out.


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Anonymous A on Aug 12, 2020

Thank you, Andre

Content Creator
replied on Aug 13, 2020
McKinsey offers w/o final round interviews - 100% risk-free - 10+ years MBB coaching experience - Multiple book author

Hi Anonymous,

Let's try to think from the opposite direction, and the situation will be clear.

Do I want to interview a candidate just for the sake of interviewing him, knowing he is not will prepared and will most most likely fail anyway? No, it's a complete waste of money, brains and time on both sides, and this would not only end in failing to get an offer, but also remembering you for not appreciating my time by non-proper preparation ;-)

So no issue to reschedule - even though it doesn't make a difference at the end, most humans simply feel more comfortable by giving a reason for that (ideally something out of your immediate control). At the same time you should make sure you keep your new appointment .. at some point in time I need to question your professionalism and time planning skills otherwise.

Hope that helps - if so, please be so kind and give it a thumbs-up with the green upvote button below!


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Anonymous A on Aug 14, 2020

Thank you so much for the insight!

Content Creator
replied on Aug 11, 2020
Bain Consultant | Interviewer for 3 years at Bain |Passionate about coaching |I will make you a case interview Rockstar


Asking for more time should be no problem at all. Recruiters know that candidates can be very busy, especially if you are an experienced candidate and they want you to be as prepared as possible when interviewing.


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Anonymous on Aug 11, 2020

Thank you for the response!


replied on Aug 14, 2020
Ex-McK Experienced Hire and EM - I show you how to perform at your best

Hi there,

100% okay to take more time, if you need it. In fact, it shows that you are mature and self-aware. In fact, I have advised people to do this in between interview rounds, too. It's always ok.

Just don't go dark on the recruiter. Let him or her know what you are thinking.

If, for some reason, you feel that spots will fill up, you can always ask. But this is pretty unlikely. Once your in the pipeline, they'll want to grab you!

Let me know if this helps!

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Anonymous A on Aug 14, 2020

Thank you for the advice, Allen!

Ian gave the best answer


Content Creator
#1 BCG coach | MBB | Tier 2 | Digital, Tech, Platinion | 100% personal success rate (8/8) | 95% candidate success rate
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