Should You Be Telling A Candidate They Didn’t Get the Job?

08.07.19 | Looking to Hire

It’s normal to dislike delivering bad news. Most people don’t delight over the fact that they get to reject someone. During the hiring process, you’re likely to encounter some amazing options and some that aren’t so perfect. After everything, you can only hire one which means you have to say no to everyone else.

Even when the internal ‘no’ comes easy, you still don’t relish the prospect of potentially crushing a candidate’s dream. Instead of avoiding the responsibility, because you should be telling a candidate they didn’t get the job, here are three tips to help make rejection easier.

1. Start with generic emails to first-round cuts

These are the applicants who didn’t make it to the interview stage. These emails often get sent late in the game, leaving job seekers wondering about the status. They may even follow-up directly with your company to see what’s happening.

Instead of leaving them hanging, send a prompt rejection email where you thank them for the application, acknowledge their accomplishments, and explain other candidates fit the position better. The goal is to let them down without making them feel inadequate.

2. Send personalized emails after first interviews

While the first rejection email can be automated, you want a more personalized approach for those who don’t advance to round two of interviews. They’ve taken the time to come in and interview and have a right to an email that is written for them.

Try to include some detail that makes it clear you didn’t simply send the canned response. Even if it’s only a few changes, this is a better approach to letting them know you valued their time and experience, even though they ultimately weren’t the right choice.

3. Finish with phone calls

Once you’ve advanced past the first-round of interviews, you want to reach out directly by phone to each of the candidates who aren’t getting the job. This is about more than being considerate-you want to maintain a good relationship with these candidates.

Even though they weren’t your final choice, there was a reason they advanced as far as they did. Give them a call and explain what happened and let them know, if it’s true, that you’ll keep them in mind for future opportunities. This way, you’re building a pipeline of potential candidates instead of burning bridges.

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We know how stressful the job search can be, from screening to interviewing to rejecting. When you partner with Workbox, we take on the bulk of the responsibility and just leave the decision-making to you. Our mission is to provide you with qualified and productive employees. Find a location near you today!