Candidates: How To Respond To A Rejection Letter

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When you receive a rejection letter from a job you applied to, it can make you feel pretty down. It doesn’t matter if you wanted the job really badly or if you didn’t even much care, rejection always stings. Rejection really lowers your confidence as a job candidate.

Image Credit: Rejection Letter from Bigstock

It’s easy to let your ego get the better of you after you’ve been rejected for a job. Don’t let it. There is a right and wrong way to handle job search rejection. Your response plays into your character, so be professional.

Come Recommended founder, Heather Huhman, recently rejected some candidates for an internship and one of the candidates responded with the following email:

“LOL ok thanks”

Yep. That’s it.

Now, this candidate may have interviewed horribly or she could have been runner-up to the person who was offered the job. Whatever the case was prior to her email, she has now lost a lot of points in professionalism. She’s probably ruined her chances of trying again in the future.

Instead of sending a response like this candidate, take a little time to let the rejection soak in before you respond. Your immediate instinct will be to write a much more emotional response than you should. Once you’ve taken the time you need, you can reply to the rejection letter.

Start your letter by thanking the hiring manager or interviewer for their time and consideration. If you’re still interested in working for the company, mention this next. Express your interest in being considered for future opportunities where you meet the qualifications. Next, if you would like, you can ask for feedback. Explain that you would like to learn how to be a stronger candidate in the future. Wrap it up by reiterating your thanks.

Even if you have no interest in further pursing a company, it’s essential to send a professional response to every rejection letter you receive. It always helps to end on a positive note because you never know when you might encounter the hiring manager in the future. Your response will help you with future job opportunities, maintain your professional network, and possibly better your interviewing skills.

What advice would you give to job candidates responding to a rejection letter?

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