Job applicants put a lot of effort when applying for jobs. They take the time to research about your company, create a resume, and prepare for the interview. Candidates may even take a day off work and spend time and money to travel to the interview. Yet most of the time, they never hear back from employers, even after a face-to-face interview. Hiring managers often leave them waiting and wondering what happened. Job seekers are then left uninformed of their job application rejection.
If you’re an interviewer, don’t do this to your candidates. Once you have decided who’s fit for the job, inform the rejected ones straightway.
A rejected candidate who has turned up for an interview expects and deserves a clear reason for his/her rejection. If you will inform the rejected applicants at once that they are not qualified, they won’t feel bad about you. They won’t likely spread negative comments about your business or company among their friends and relations.
Likewise, a rejected aspirant could be a potential employee after he/she has gained experience and skills elsewhere or a good match for a future vacancy. Don’t turn him/her off your employer brand because you’ll lose him/her as a possible candidate, and perhaps as a potential donor or advocate, forever.
Finally, if a job applicant has taken the time to fill in an application form or attend an interview, it’s only polite to let him/her know the result. Also, it will save you time if you will not deal with emails or calls from a candidate following-up.
How to Notify of Job Application Rejection
If you’re not using an automated system to notify rejected candidates, the fastest way to handle this is to create two standard email templates: one for people you have interviewed and one for people you haven’t. You can always tailor them if you want to say something to a particular applicant. Check out our examples below.
- For interviewed candidates:
“Thank you so much for talking with me last Monday. I really enjoyed your company. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to move your application forward. Still, I greatly appreciate your interest in working with us and wish you the best of luck in your job quest.”
- For applicants you haven’t interviewed:
“Thank you for applying for a position with our firm. Although we won’t be able to move you forward in our hiring process, we really appreciate your interest in working with us and wish you the best in your job quest.”
Rejecting Internal Candidates
An internal candidate who’s already working for your firm deserves more. Don’t simply send him/her an email (or you risk demoralizing good employees). Instead, do it in person and try to give feedback about what he/she could do to be a stronger candidate in the future.
Since the recruitment and hiring process can be long and complex, it’s easy for you to leave a few tasks aside. Yet it’s important that you learn how to reject a job applicant in a prompt and polite way. You never know when someone you rejected last time might be the perfect one for your next position, in an influential online presence, or in a key position at a client company. In all of these cases, it’s best if you take the time to reject a job applicant graciously.
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