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I have been interviewing with a company that would require me to relocate if I were to accept the position (from Minnesota to New Hampshire). I have gone through 3 interviews and have given a code sample, and have been invited to an on-site interview. In the email scheduling the on-site, I was told that I will be given a day to look for housing in the area as well while they would pay for the hotel. Is this a sign that I may have the job, or is it still too early to tell?

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    The other two answers echo my sentiments regarding your situation. I'd be pretty excited about it if I were in your shoes though. Sounds like you might be getting an offer while you're there. And I am in a similar situation. I have an on-site interview (no relocation assistance though) next week. I'll let you know how it works out :) – Brian Mar 27 '15 at 15:51
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    It is a good sign. If they are paying for an on site visit then you are definitely on the short list. Be relaxed and continue to answer the questions. At this stage you can start to ask more questions. Research the company. – paparazzo Mar 27 '15 at 15:53
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    You're probably going to get an offer, but it's not certain. Be careful and remember that you're still "interviewing" even if on a casual outing - I know a candidate that lost a job offer because his prospective coworkers invited him out to happy hour after his final round of interviews and he was told to expect an offer. He drank too much, got embarassingly drunk, and they had to send him home to a different town in a cab. Make sure you stay on your best behavior and don't let your guard (which still applies after you get an offer, but doubly so while they are still evaluating you). – Johnny Mar 27 '15 at 20:11
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    In the video game industry it is very common to bring people in from all over for on-site interviews and not end up give them an offer. Generally all it takes is a reasonably good phone interview. The intent is always to hire, but it depends on the face to face interviews. Good luck! :) – Retired Ninja Mar 28 '15 at 4:36
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You don't have the job until you have a signed offer letter. However, the housing situation could affect your decision, so they're giving you a chance to scout it out. (Are there places to live that match both your needs and your finances? Do you like the neighborhood? How's the commute? Etc.)

This is pretty standard practice in my experience; if they're flying you in anyway and it would involve relocation, they'll add some time for you to see the local area. It's possible that they'll even have a prospective coworker show you around.

(I've never been the candidate in this situation, but I've seen this a lot from the other side and I've been in the "coworker who shows the person around" role.)

  • Quick follow up if you don't mind. In your experience, how many people that were invited to the site visit wound up not getting the job? Is it still hit or miss, or is it looking good? – wolfPack88 Mar 27 '15 at 16:05
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    This probably varies a lot, but it's not uncommon in my experience for the short list (the people who are brought in) to have two or three people on it. – Monica Cellio Mar 27 '15 at 16:06
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    I've brought people in (internationally, even) and not given them the job. It happens. Better a $2K experiment than a $200,000 mistake. In one case we had the guy actually do some work and paid him. It's almost surely an indicator the OP is on the short list (unless they're being brought in for some other reason, such as to make somebody's preferred candidate look good, but you won't want to work for a company that allows that sort of shenanigans anyway). – Spehro Pefhany Mar 28 '15 at 18:57
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I have been in this situation before, and would like to add an important point. Others are right, you do not have the job until the contract is signed. If the company invests in you and pays for your trip, it is a good sign.

And here is my additional insight: the site visit is an opportunity for both parties to have a better idea of the future. Use it to see wether you would be happy working in that environment for that company. Talk to people who already work there, have a look at your future desk, and so on.

I was selected for a job a few years back, it was a regional director position in Europe for 5 countries, it sounds really good. During my site visit, however I saw how people are treated, and I talked to a few guys about the ways of the company and decided not to sign the contract.

Make sure that you also evaluate the situation. Your future employer is giving you this opportunity so that you can make a sound decision and hopefully won't regret it (and complain) after.

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Until you have signed a written* job offer and have a start date, you don't have the job.

*Some types of jobs don't have written offers, but there is still some formal way of accepting the job offer.

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