How many applicants did you have for the job?

After that question, I must understand that the vacancy is still opened, or it is closed?

If I asked such question for the current vacancy, I would say: "How many applicants have you got for the job?".

  • 1
    All you know for sure from the sentence is that the period for receiving applications is over. There's usually a period between all applications being in and the job closing, because the hiring person needs time to make the decision. Nov 29, 2021 at 20:14
  • It is closed, no doubt about it. But, it is still open: How many applicants have you had for the job? [still true now, present perfect]. If you use "have you got" which is both present in all Englishes but also present perfect in British English, it can confuse the reader.
    – Lambie
    Nov 29, 2021 at 21:19
  • By the way, you and I know that DID is always a past tense marker.
    – Lambie
    Nov 29, 2021 at 21:21
  • Correct on all counts
    – gotube
    Nov 30, 2021 at 1:40
  • @Lambie Yes, did is past tense. Thus the speaker is at some point in the future from the point when the last application was received. That does not mean the job is closed. The speaker could easily be in the stage of considering which applicant to pick. You really need to stop insulting and harassing people. Dec 1, 2021 at 13:44

1 Answer 1


The past tense suggests that there isn't the link with the present that the present perfect would give.

The present perfect might suggest that the period for receiving applications continued until the present (and so either was still open to new applications or had just closed)

The past tense therefore suggests the period for receiving applications was in the past, but the position may or may not have been filled.

Have you employed a new secretary?

No not yet. We interviewed yesterday but none of the candidates was suitable.

How many applications did you get?

Five, but three didn't even have the required qualifications. The other two weren't a good fit for the company.

  • James, "have you got" is only present prefect in British English; not AmE. In BrE. "Have you got" can be present perfect or simple present. You changed the verb in order to answer the question. So, that changes the whole thing.
    – Lambie
    Dec 1, 2021 at 15:04

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .