How To Successfully Respond to a Rejection Email

Respond to a Rejection Email
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A job rejection response won’t be uncommon if you have been job searching for any length of time. You might go on a few interviews before landing your perfect position, and every successful professional has had to reply to a rejection email at least once during their career. It’s important not to let rejection discourage you and consider how to respond to job rejection in a successful way. 

It can be a challenge to find the right response to job rejection. Of course, you’ll feel upset at not getting the position you wanted, and it’s hard to be professional under those circumstances. But the right job rejection email response can help your image and even lead to other opportunities. Read on to learn how to respond to a job rejection email with dignity and professionalism. 

Should You Respond to a Rejection Email?

While it might be tempting to ignore a rejection email, replying is beneficial. Whatever your personal feelings about responding to a job rejection, it’s still important to maintain professionalism and send a grateful, polite job rejection response. 

Here are the benefits of responding to job rejection in a timely and skillful way. 

⭕️ It leaves a good impression. 

A professional email after a job rejection leaves a good impression with the hiring manager. This could help you maintain your network and brand. A bitter rejection thank you letter will of course leave a poor impression, and no response to an interview rejection is equally useless. You never know who the hiring manager knows, and how a positive impression will reverberate through your network. So don’t be afraid to reply to a rejection email!

⭕️ It keeps future opportunities open. 

Writing a response to a rejection letter is crucial because there could be other opportunities available at this organization. Perhaps the other candidate had only a minor lead, and your interview was otherwise strong. Writing a follow up email after a rejection will inform the hiring manager that you are still interested in their company, and that you are in fact a good fit. It’s possible that position, or a similar one, will soon become available, and your job rejection response can set you up big time. It’s not unheard of for people to get a position at a company after responding to a job rejection. 

How to Respond to a Rejection Email

It’s tough to know how to reply to a job rejection email, but every good job rejection response has the same qualities. Keep these tips in mind when you are writing your reply to a rejection email.  

1. Express gratitude

The most important thing to remember when you write a job rejection email response is to strike the right tone. Show the hiring manager you are grateful for the opportunity to interview, and thankful that they took their time to consider you. After all, this is a thank you letter after an unsuccessful interview, so give thanks! A little gratitude goes a long way in a job rejection response. 

2. Show your disappointment

It’s normal to express genuine disappointment when replying to a rejection email. Naturally, you’ll be discouraged that you didn’t get the position you wanted after applying and interviewing, and it’s ok to let the manager know this when you send a job rejection email response. Let them know you had hoped for a better outcome but understand that another candidate was better for the job. 

3. Let them know you’re still interested

It’s acceptable to express interest in the position when you send a response to a job rejection email. Perhaps this position will open up again shortly, and your job rejection email response is a good opportunity to let them know you are a potential future candidate.

4. Ask for feedback

One thing to try when you are replying to a rejection email is to ask for interview feedback from the hiring manager. Their opinion and advice can help you nail your next interview. If you don’t know how to ask for feedback after a job rejection, try these tips. 

  • Explain your reasons

Take a moment in your job rejection email response to briefly explain that you are always looking to improve yourself in your job search. This is a positive takeaway and makes you look professional to the hiring manager. It also sets an open-minded tone to your job rejection response and invites them to share. 

  • Don’t be argumentative

If the hiring manager gives you any feedback after your job rejection response, take it as a gift. Don’t try to push back on what they’ve said, regardless of your opinion. At the end of the day, their feedback is a favor, and your rejection thank you letter should therefore be accepting instead of angry. 

  • Keep your correspondence short

If the hiring manager reads your job rejection email response and decides to give you feedback, don’t ask for more. If you continue to push, it’s unlikely they will respond, and it could impact their impression of you negatively. A simple thank you email after they’ve provided feedback will suffice. 

Job Rejection Email Response Samples

If you don’t know how to reply to a rejection email, samples can help you guide your writing process. Use the following examples to craft a strong job rejection response. 

  • This sample reply to a rejection email includes specifics about the company and the interview, instead of a more generic job rejection email response. 

Subject Line: April 2nd Interview

Dear Mrs. McGrath, 

Thank you very much for letting me know your decision regarding our interview. Although I was disappointed I won’t be joining the team as an IT consultant, I’m so grateful for the opportunity to meet you and learn more about the work that First Call IT does. I particularly enjoyed your demonstration of the weekly team meeting; it looks like a great chance for the staff to share their concerns. 

I’ll happily keep following the brand, and I’m excited about the smart home program First Call is working on. I’m passionate about these types of projects, and if anything becomes available in the future, I hope you will keep me in mind. 

Again, thank you for taking the time to meet with me, and for considering my application. I wish you the best with your new candidate.  

Kind Regards, 
Sean Muliere

  • This sample job rejection email response demonstrates how to ask for feedback from the interview.

Subject Line: Speech Therapy Interview

Hello Mr. Tanowitz,

I just wanted to thank you for giving me the chance to interview for the Speech Therapist position, and for telling me your decision. 

Although I’m disappointed at the outcome, it was great to speak to you and get a tour of the facilities. The work that Frontier Speech is doing in the community is incredible and I’ll be following your philanthropy projects closely. I hope to apply to future opportunities as they become available. 

If you have a quick moment, I was wondering if you would be open to letting me know what I can improve on, based on our interview. I’m always trying to better myself in my job search, and I’d love to hear what I could have done differently. 

Thank you again for your time and consideration. I look forward to hearing from you. 

Sincerely, 
Jen Walton 

Tips for Replying to Rejection Emails

Here are some tips for writing a professional job rejection response. 

💡 Reply quickly

Don’t take too long to reply to a rejection email. After a few days or weeks, your job rejection response will be irrelevant, and its effect will be lost. At best, quickly responding to job rejection shows that you care about the company’s decision and could help them consider you for other roles. 

💡 Don’t be generic

Don’t send a generic email after a job rejection. It could easily come across as insincere to the hiring manager. Making your job rejection email response more personal and direct will help you maintain that network connection and improve your future chances of a position. 

💡 Don’t try to change their mind

Begging for a job isn’t a good look for anyone. If you use your response to a rejection letter to try and convince them, it won’t look professional. An argumentative job rejection email response will also fail to change anyone’s mind, since the hiring manager has made their decision already. It’s best to accept their decision when you reply to a rejection email and be gracious in your interaction. 

🔑 Key Takeaways

Replying to a rejection email is tough, but a shrewd thing to do. The right job rejection email response can help you network and improve your chances of getting other positions. If you’re not sure how to respond to a rejection letter, try checking out some samples to help you in the writing process. Be genuine and grateful in your response to a job rejection and ask for feedback if you can. Don’t let a rejection discourage you! A smart job rejection response could lead to your next opportunity. 

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--- Originally written by Tiffany Quinn ---

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