The Meaning Behind Job Application Statuses

The Meaning Behind Job Application Statuses

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Now that the job application process is done online, it is easy to see the job application statuses such as “under review”, “application received”, or “in progress/process”. Why are job application statuses shown to those who applied, and what does the status mean?

The status of a job application shows that it has been viewed by the hiring manager or the HR department, and it shows if an application is still being considered for the job. The status of an application is visible to the person who applied, so they know if their application is being considered.

However, the meaning of these job statuses changes from one company to another, so it is sometimes hard to figure out at which stage of the recruitment process you are. In this article, we will explain the meaning behind typical job application statuses and what they mean for the selection process of job seekers.

Job Application Statuses and Their Meaning

Below are statuses that are commonly seen on job applications. Unfortunately, the exact wording of a job status varies by company, but most are phrased in similar ways to the ones that are listed below. Keep reading to find out what each of them means.

Referred to Hiring Manager

When you look at your job application, and it says “Referred to Hiring Manager,” this means that your application has passed the initial screening that the HR department does, and it has now been sent to the hiring manager of the department that oversees the job position you applied for.

If you see this status on your job application, the hiring manager will likely see your application within a week, and you should periodically check the status in the next week to see if it changes.

Job Offered

If your job status says “Job Offered,” then congratulations, you have been offered the job! You will likely get a phone call or email telling you that they have accepted your application and offered you the job. You will also receive an email telling you about what salary you will receive and what benefits the job comes with. Now it is up to you whether or not you want to accept it or negotiate the salary further.

Application Received

When an application is received, it means that an employer has gained access to a person’s application materials. This status does not necessarily mean that a human, such as a recruitment agent, has already reviewed the application. Some job advertisement platforms can automatically report the receipt of job applications once they get through the recruitment system.

Incomplete Application

If your job application says that it is incomplete, it means that you need to add more information for your application to be considered for the job you applied to. Sometimes you just need to answer a few more questions or complete forms that weren’t properly added. It is easy to change this status by going into your application and completing it.

Under Review

If your job application status says that it is under review, you are being considered for the position among other applicants. Check back frequently in the next few days to see if it changes, but it means that it is likely being seen by the correct people that will possibly hire you for the job you applied for.

Your application may also show up under the category of “Application Review,” which means the same thing. It just means that the HR department or hiring manager is making sure you meet all of their requirements.


If your job application says “Interviewing,” it means that the hiring manager is currently interviewing people for the position you applied for. Check your email and see if they sent you an interview request, or wait a few days and see if they call you in for an interview.

If your application says “Interview Offer, ” congratulations, they want to interview you for the position! Check your voicemails and your spam email folder to see if they have tried to contact you if you have not yet seen the email or answered their call about when you can be interviewed.

For Future Consideration

When your job application says “For Future Consideration,” it means that they have chosen not to hire you for the open job position. However, the hiring manager decided that you would be a good candidate for future job openings.

If this happens, your status may also say “shelved” or something similar.


If your job application status says “Shortlisted, ” you are being heavily considered for another interview, technical interview, or skillset exam. You may get a job offer or be called for an interview or exam soon.

Keep an eye on your email account and check to see if they have sent you an email about the next step in the hiring process that they need you to complete.

In Progress/Process

If your job application says “In Progress” or “In Process,” then your application is being considered by the HR department or the hiring manager. They might be determining if you meet the job qualifications, if you have enough experience, or they may simply be considering your application, as well as other applications that have been submitted to them.


If your job application says that it has been received, then it has been fully completed by you, and the company has received your application. They may not have seen it yet, but they will see it soon.

Not Retained

Unfortunately, being told that your application was “not retained” means that the employer no longer considers you for the job. The potential employer will delete your resume from their database.

Being Reviewed

If your job application says that it is being reviewed, then the employer has seen your application and it still considering it. They are likely considering whether or not you are qualified for the position you applied for.


If it says that you have been referred, your application has been accepted and moved to the next step in the hiring process. You will soon be sent a request for an interview.

If your application says that it has not been referred, then you will not be considered for the position because other people who applied for the same job were more qualified or experienced than you.


Unfortunately, if your job application status is “Stopped,” you are not being considered for the job. However, it may also mean that the company has stopped looking for people to fill the open position.

If this is the case, the status of your application may also be “Closed.”


If your job application says that it is ready, then congratulations! You completed all interviews and tests and have been offered the job.

On Hold

If your job application status is on hold, someone else is being considered for the job.

Not Chosen

Unfortunately, if your job application says that it has not been chosen, you didn’t get the job, and you will have to keep looking. Someone else has been hired.

Active Application

If your job application says that it is active, then you have successfully turned in your application, and it will soon be seen by the HR department. If they accept your application, it will be sent to the hiring manager, and you will be considered for the position you applied for.

Declined Offer

If your job application says “Declined Offer,” you were offered the job but declined it. This means that you won’t work for this company, but you still had the option to.

Eligible Candidate

If your job application status is “Eligible Candidate,” you are still being considered for the job.

Final Review

If your job application says “Final Review,” it means that you are one of the top candidates that the company is considering hiring. You may be called in for another interview, but at this point, you just need to wait and see if you are offered the job.

No Longer Being Considered

If your job application says that it is no longer being considered, you will not be offered the job.

Process Completed

Process Completed” is a general status indicating that an applicant has successfully completed a task entailed by the application form.

This phrase may either appear at the end of the whole application procedure. However, it does not automatically mean that the applicant is already hired by the employer because it is only the “process” that has been “completed.”

Position Withdrawn

It means that the employer is no longer accepting candidates. There may be many reasons for the position to be closed: too many candidates submitted applications, a candidate has already been signed, the company can no longer afford such a position, etc.

Not Selected

The job application status “not selected” means that you are no longer considered a candidate for the position because your profile does not fit the prerequisites of the job.

Many job platforms like Indeed mention this job application status to notify job seekers that they will not be hired for the job.

How to See Job Application Status

It is easy to check the status of your application. All you need to do is:

  • Go to the website you applied for the job on
  • Click on the “My Applications” button. It may also appear as “Previous Applications”
  • Look at your most recent job application
  • The status of your application will be shown in a column beside where your application is shown or can be clicked on so you can view it.

If you have any questions or concerns related to the job posting, email the hiring manager or the HR department. You will likely find an email address that you can use on their company website or contact them through the job website that you applied to the job through.

If you are unsure what your job status means, you can contact the company to clarify the meaning. They will be happy to explain, especially if they are considering you for the job position you applied for.

If you have not heard from a company about your job application and the status of your application has not changed since you completed it, contact the company and check to see if they have seen it. If they have not seen it, they will make sure to look at it at some point or tell you what website you should visit to apply.

About The Author

Nathan Brunner
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Nathan Brunner is a labor market expert. He is a mathematician who graduated from EPFL.

He is the owner of Salarship, a job board where less-skilled candidates can find accessible employment opportunities.