Employment Rejection Letter

Employment rejection letters are sent to candidates who interview with a company but fail to be hired. When interviews are two-tiered, so the first interview is an initial screening with one person and the second is typically with a panel of appropriate personnel, a rejection letter is sent after either the first or second interview.

What is an Employment Rejection Letter

Job rejection letters are courteously and professionally written with the feelings of the rejected candidate as the top priority. Employers need to attract the most qualified candidates to maintain quality standards, so their reputation is on the line even when delivering the negative news. The letters should be short, clear, and state the reason the candidate was not hired.

Letters telling candidates they have not been hired should be mailed or emailed as soon as possible after the interview is over and the hiring decision has been made. Candidates invest time and energy into interviews and deserve the respect of a timely notification so they can proceed with their job search.

Remember when sending a rejection or a rejection email after an interview to be brief and clear about the reasons that you did not move forward with the hire.

Importance of a Good Employment Rejection Letter

If a candidate is rejected after an initial interview, it's likely they have only met one or two employees. A second interview with a panel may mean they've met five or 10 more personnel.

The job rejection letter is your last opportunity to ensure the candidate sees your company in a favorable light even though they were not selected for the position. Building goodwill is an important, positive step, especially in the case of rejection.

Although including detailed feedback in a rejection letter takes time, it's the most constructive and valued type of response a candidate can receive. Carefully choose the wording to avoid insults and hurtful comments.

Candidates are grateful for feeling that you cared about them, appreciated their efforts, and respected them enough to take the time to contact them. How you treat job candidates will influence your reputation as an employer in the community. Everyone is a possible referral source.

Sample Rejection Letters

The wording for rejection letters varies based on the reason the candidate was not hired.

No Available Positions

"Regrettably, we do not have any current openings in your areas of concentration and skill. Your resume will remain on file for XX months in the event our staffing needs to change. Best wishes on your career path."

Unqualified Candidates

"We are grateful for your interest in (Company Name) and the position of (Name of Position) for which you submitted a resume and application. However, after receiving and evaluating many applications, regrettably you were not among the most skilled for the position."

Impressive Candidates Who Are Rejected

"Your resume and application were impressive, but unfortunately another candidate was more qualified for the available position. We expect that a person with your experience and credentials will soon find employment, but we want to stress that we encourage you to apply to other positions with our company in the future. We'll contact you if a position that fits your qualifications becomes available."

Follow-up Phone Call

A job candidate who has completed a second interview for a position is worthy of more than just a rejection letter. Employers often choose to follow up the second meeting with a personal phone call as well as written communication.

Be prepared to answer questions during the phone conversation regarding the applicant's short-comings, strong points, and how they could improve their chances of being hired in the future. Exercise diplomacy during the call and be as honest as professionally possible in answering inquiries. Include encouraging comments such as what strengths and attributes the interviewing team noted during the meeting.

Avoid discussion of who was hired instead for the position, such as specific background and qualifications. In the event the candidate sues the employer for alleged discrimination, the court may require copies of all the job applicants' resumes and applications for the specific position to support the allegations.

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