How To Ask Why You Didn’t Get The Job

Last Updated on July 31, 2022 by Harry Urschel

Have you recently appeared for an interview and are waiting for a response from your recruiter because the interview went well? But days and weeks passed, and you finally received a rejection?

If you’re constantly getting rejected by recruiters without any reason, You can ask them and find out where exactly on your resume or interview skills they saw something wrong. You can ask for feedback from your employer and know where to improve!

Here is how to ask why you didn’t get the job after appearing for a job interview.

Common Reasons For Not Getting A Job


Employers typically reject job seekers for several reasons. However, they don’t share feedback every time. If you think your interview performance was good, still the hiring manager went with another candidate, it could be due to one of the following reasons:

You are a less or overqualified candidate:

Sometimes you might have applied for a job role thinking you are the perfect fit for the position. But you are overqualified for the job, or you don’t meet all the eligibility criteria for the position. The recruiter will prefer to select a more qualified candidate in such cases.

The company cannot afford you:

If you ask for a higher salary or want more employee benefits than those offered to you, the employer won’t consider you. You can still negotiate with your recruiter and see if you can agree on good terms.

You didn’t crack the interview confidently:

If the employer notices that you lack confidence or are unsure about what you want to do during the interview, he’ll reject you and ask you to prepare better. The best solution is to answer the interview questions confidently and prepare in advance for the hiring process.

The employer found another better candidate:

Multiple candidates appear for each job opening at a company. And you’ll always have to compete with a pool of candidates to land your dream job.

So, even after clearing all the interview rounds, if the interviewer finds a stronger candidate, he’ll not extend a job offer to you.

You indulged in a miscommunication:

Your employer might give you some instructions to follow during the interview process, which can lead to miscommunication if you fail to understand them. This might also affect your chances of getting the job.

So, politely ask your employer for clear instructions whenever you want more clarity on a topic or question. If you are an employer, you should know how to tell an applicant they didn’t get the job.

The employer decided to proceed with an existing employee:

Sometimes hiring managers conduct interviews but later decide to promote or employ current employees in new positions. Companies typically do this since hiring internal employees saves them from training newer ones.

Besides, existing employees understand the work culture and are reliable.

Why Employers Don’t Provide Information


Most employers never inform the candidate about their job application status or provide meaningful feedback. Several factors may affect their hiring decision, including the candidate’s key qualifications, skill set, interview performance, etc.

Besides, some employers might reject candidates due to discrimination which is illegal. Applicants can even file a case against the employer. So, most employers don’t provide honest feedback to qualified candidates.

Again, ask for feedback politely and not question their decision-making process. Instead, you can tell the company that their feedback can help you in your future interviews.

How to Ask Why You Weren’t Hired?


Requesting feedback after the interview can be of great help while applying for future opportunities. You can learn from your previous mistakes and try not to repeat them in your future interviews.

However, most employers avoid providing the reason for rejection, especially in written form, via email since it may raise legal issues for the company. But if you express genuine interest in improving your future applications and job search, the company might share feedback.

One of the best ways to make sure your hiring manager gives you thoughtful feedback is by avoiding asking direct questions regarding your job rejections.

Instead, ask the recruiter indirectly about your performance, the skills you lack, or suggestions to improve your job profile. You can also ask the employer for tips on your resume.

Here’s how to ask why you didn’t get the job offer:

  • Analyze your performance during the interview. Try to find out where you messed up and how you can improve it if you get another chance.
  • Send a follow-up email to your recruiter if you don’t hear back from the company after a few weeks. This way, you’ll get to know if you are rejected, and the recruiter might consider your application for future job opportunities.
  • Write a polite email and request feedback within the mail. Make sure not to question their decision directly. It will ruin your impression.
  • When you receive a response from the recruiter, reply to them with great respect. Say that you appreciate their feedback and will work on the improvements. This will leave a positive impression on your recruiter, and he might connect with you in the future for other job opportunities.

What To Say When You Didn’t Get The Job?


Job rejection can hit badly. You might get frustrated and demotivated at first. But you shouldn’t lose your patience and get into an argument with your recruiter. You still have to work on leaving a good impression on your manager.

So, here’s what you can say if you didn’t get the job offer:

  • I’d appreciate it if you could provide feedback regarding the interview, as it would help me while applying for future job opportunities.
  • Is there anything specific I can work on before applying for other job roles?
  • Do you think I should get stronger job references to land more job opportunities?
  • Do you have any suggestions for my resume and cover letter?
  • Can you provide some tips on how I could research your company in a better manner?

Regardless of the questions, you ask via email or phone call, make sure to keep the conversation short, simple, and clear. Also, maintain a polite, positive, and professional tone.

Example Email Message Asking for Employer Feedback


Below is a follow-up email you can send to your recruiter to ask why you were rejected:

Dear Ms. Johnson,

Thank you for considering me for the position of Senior Graphic Designer. I greatly appreciated the opportunity to discuss the position with you. Though I was eager to work with you, I appreciate that you took the time to inform me about your hiring decision.

As I respect your expertise and professionalism in the hiring process, I’d like to ask for feedback via call or email about my interview. It would be helpful if you share some tips on how I can improve my chances of getting hired in this field.

Thank you for your consideration,

Brian Joe

Example Email Message Asking for Feedback by Email or Phone


Here is a sample template you can use to ask for feedback by email or phone:

Dear Ms. Ray

Thank you for interviewing me for the position of Junior Software Developer. I enjoyed discussing the position and the company’s plans with you. Although it’s disappointing to hear that the position is filled, I appreciate you for sharing the news with me.

I wonder if you would do me a favor and provide feedback about my interview and skills, it would make me competitive for future jobs. I would love to hear your opinions via a telephonic chat or email.

Thank you for your time!

Best regards,

Jacob Smith

What to Do if You’re Granted a Feedback Interview


If your recruiter offers you a feedback interview, grab this opportunity to find your answers about why you were rejected. But before appearing for the discussion, frame your questions such that the interviewer doesn’t get a negative opinion about you.

Ask the interviewer indirectly about your performance, why you didn’t get the job, and suggestions to improve your job application or resume.

Remember to thank the recruiter for giving you the time to discuss your performance when you call him. Ask for advice and appreciate the Information shared with you.

Finally, conclude the conversation and tell your manager that you would be interested in applying for a future position at the organization.

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