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How to Craft a Professional Response to a Job Rejection

Posted by Glassdoor Team

Career Advice Experts

Last Updated June 29, 2021

Guide Overview

Why is it important to respond to a job rejection email?What to include in a strong job rejection responseHow to respond to a job rejection emailJob rejection response templateJob rejection response example

Guide Overview

The importance of learning how to respond to a job rejection email

Receiving a job rejection email can be emotionally challenging and difficult to handle. Rather than deleting the email and going about your day, you should know how to respond to a job rejection email by sending a response expressing your gratitude and requesting consideration for future positions. Learn more about how to respond to a job rejection email and review a template and example to help you write a professional response.

Why is it important to respond to a job rejection email?

It can feel challenging or discouraging to respond to a job rejection email, especially if you felt you had aced the interview. It’s important to craft a professional response to the hiring manager, especially if you had undergone a few interviews with them. Even though you didn’t get the job, they may still view you as a strong candidate and might consider you for other opportunities. Here are some common reasons to respond to a job rejection email:

  • Shows your professionalism: Responding to a rejection email and thanking the interviewer for their time can show that you’re professional and courteous, which may impress them.
  • Leads to potential opportunities with the company: If you reach out with a polite and thoughtful response, it may remind the interviewer how professional and impressive you were during the interview. They may save your resume and keep you in mind for any future opportunities they think you could be an even better fit for.
  • Allows you to gain feedback on your interview skills: When you craft your response, request feedback on your interview performance. This can help you learn what you’re doing right and what interview techniques to improve to help you nail the next one.

What to include in a strong job rejection response

Your job rejection response should be short and sweet as you professionally express your disappointment in not earning the role, appreciation for the opportunity, and gratitude for hearing back from them. Elements to include in your job rejection response email include:

  • A formal greeting
  • One or two sentences thanking them for their consideration
  • A sentence or two expressing your disappointment for not getting the role
  • A few sentences asking to be considered for future opportunities
  • A professional closing and signature

How to respond to a job rejection email

When you receive a job rejection email, take time to think about how you acted in the interview and draft an email that’s professional, courteous, and polite. Follow these steps to effectively respond to a job rejection:

  1. Take a few moments to reflect on your interview. Before writing your job rejection response, take a moment to breathe and reflect on your rejection. The job search process can be overwhelming at times, so taking a break and giving yourself positive reassurance before responding can help you reflect on your interview and reply to the email with a more positive mood or energy.
  2. Express your gratitude for the opportunity. Once you’ve taken a breather, begin your email with a professional greeting and salutation. Then, start the email’s body with a message stating your appreciation for the chance to interview with the company. Expressing your gratitude reminds them of how polite and courteous you are.
  3. Briefly mention your disappointment in not receiving the role. Of course, you’re disappointed in being passed over for the role, so it’s okay to express this. Briefly express your disappointment with one or two quick sentences. Mentioning this disappointment tells hiring managers you were interested in the role and enjoyed the company. Staying brief with this section helps you maintain a positive tone throughout the email.
  4. Let them know you’re still open to any upcoming roles. Explain to the hiring manager that you enjoyed learning about the company and would like to be considered for any future roles they may have available. This reminds them to keep your resume for later and reference it when a position comes along that aligns well with your skills and experience.
  5. Request feedback on your interview performance. A great way to get a professional opinion on your interview skills is to request feedback from the hiring manager. Politely ask if there is anything you did during your interview that stuck out to the hiring manager and which skills they believe you could improve.

Job rejection response template

Your job rejection response should only be a few lines professionally expressing your gratitude, mentioning your disappointment, and requesting feedback, if you’d like any. Review this template to learn what exactly to include in your job rejection response:

Dear [interview’s name],

[Thank the interviewer for responding to your email and for the opportunity to interview with them.]

[Mention how you’re disappointed that you won’t get to work with the company, while still keeping the email positive and professional.] [Request to be considered for any future opportunities the interviewer believes you may be better suited for.]

[Use this section to professionally ask for feedback on your interview skills or resume layout, if desired.]

[Thank the interviewer again for the opportunity.]

Best regards,

[Your first and last name]

Job rejection response example

As you craft your response, make sure it’s relevant, brief, and free of any spelling or grammatical errors. It should be a quick read that the hiring manager can simply scan, then easily return to their work. Here’s an example of a strong job rejection response email:

‘Dear Mr. Andrews,

Thank you for letting me know about my status for the Marketing Coordinator role at Smart Solutions, Inc. I appreciate the opportunity to interview and learn more about yourself, the company, and the role.

While I’m disappointed that I’m not the best fit for the role, I understand your decision and would appreciate it if you kept my skills and experience in mind for any future roles with your company that you believe I may be a better fit for.

If you have a moment, I would appreciate any feedback you can provide me regarding my application, resume, or interview. Any details you can provide will help me greatly during my job search.

Thank you again for the opportunity to interview and meet you. Good luck to you and the rest of the team moving forward.

Best regards,

Avery Douglass’

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