You've successfully completed and posted your job resume and are eagerly manager to consider your cover letter and give you a response.
By Susan P. Joyce
Rats! You've received the dreaded "thank-you-for-your-interest-but..." letter, and you are very disappointed.
The interviews went really well! You liked all (or most) of the people you met there, and you feel that they liked you, too.
But, in the end, they decided to hire someone else, not you.
You may have been the number 2 or number 3 candidate. Close, but no cigar... Dang!
What now? Move on to the next opportunity, right? Of course. But first...
NOTE! This is not a permanent rejection. They did NOT say go away -- we would never, ever hire you!
They did say -- we're not going to hire you for THIS job at this point in time. BIG DIFFERENCE!
So... if you really liked the people and the organization, try turning that rejection letter on its head! Convert it into an opportunity. Maybe.
Hopefully, you wrote thank you notes to the interviewers after the job interviews. (Right?)
Ask yourself: Would I want to be considered when another opportunity opens there? If the answer is "yes," proceed with this thank you.
If you did NOT like them, and don't really want to work there, don't bother.
In 2014, I posted a version of this article on LinkedIn with this headline: The Biggest Mistake After a Job Rejection. If you think the thank-you-for-rejecting-me note is a crazy idea, read all the comments from people for whom this strategy worked!
At this point, what do you really have to lose? Really?
Many employers decide not to hire a candidate and never let the candidate know. If you have been informed, the employer has shown you some courtesy. Reward their courtesy, and reinforce your professional image.
They've already offered the job to someone else and probably gotten an acceptance. But that person may change their mind and never start the job. Or that person may take the job but prove to be unsatisfactory.
"New hires" fail more often than you think.
So, what does the employer do when they face this situation? They groan, roll their eyes, and take another look at the applicants who almost got the job. Why? Because they really don't want to start from scratch, post the job, review the resumes, schedule interviews, spend time in meetings discussing the job and the candidates, etc.
Sending this message can move you higher up on the list of the almost-hired -- a great place to be for the next job opening or if the new employee doesn't work out.
This thank you note reminds them of you (nicely) because you included the following elements in your note:
Keep it brief, but clear and cordial. Disappointment is OK. Anger is not.
As usual, sending your message as soon as you learn the outcome is the best strategy. If they let you know about the rejection via email, simply reply with this message. If you learned another way, you may -- or may not -- want to share how you found out.
An email is typically the best way to respond, particularly if that is how you have corresponded with this employer in the past.
Subject: [Job title of the job you didn't get]
[IF they notified you, use this first paragraph] Although I am truly disappointed to learn that you have selected someone else to fill this job, thank out for taking the time and effort to let me know.
-- OR --
[If you learned unofficially that someone else was hired, use this first paragraph] I understand that you have hired someone for this job, and I am disappointed that I am not that person.
I do greatly appreciate being considered for this opportunity. I enjoyed meeting with [names of the people who interviewed you] and learning more about your organization. I have been a [name of organization] fan of for quite a while and that won't change as a result of this outcome. [If they have a product or service that you really like, share a bit about that here.]
Working for [name of organization] is still a goal of mine, so I will continue to observe your activities and new developments in the hope that someday I will be able to become a contributor to [name of organization]'s continued success.
Please do keep me in mind for future opportunities.I would be very happy to hear from you.
[your email address -- not work!]
[your phone number -- not work!]
[your LinkedIn Profile URL]
Send a different version of this to everyone who interviewed you, including the HR and/or recruiting staff members.
If you felt a "connection" with someone, make the note longer and a bit more personal. But, avoid anything that could be viewed as flirting. Be completely professional with this message!
A thank you note after a rejection will really stand out. The probability that it will pay off may be less than 5%, but that probability may show a higher return on the investment of your time than any other job search action you take that day, and it won't take much time to do.
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Online job search expert Susan P. Joyce has been observing the online job search world and teaching online job search skills since 1995. A veteran of the United States Marine Corps and a recent Visiting Scholar at the MIT Sloan School of Management, Susan is a two-time layoff “graduate” who has worked in human resources at Harvard University and in a compensation consulting firm. Since 1998, Susan has been editor and publisher of Job-Hunt.org. Follow Susan on Twitter at @jobhuntorg and on Facebook, LinkedIn.
Use our sample resume follow-up email, see a follow-up phone call script and learn the most In other cases, the exact response date is provided in the job ad.
I am responding to your advertisement in the Doe Post inviting applications for a position in chemical engineering. I am currently a research chemist for Johnson Chemical Corporation where I enjoy my work, but I would prefer participating in your research program on new plastics.
I have worked on a number of projects dealing with different polymerization processes and am involved in researching aeronautical applications of polyethylene products. My interest in plastics began at Doe University, where I wrote my graduate thesis on early uses of polyethylene.
I am enclosing my resume and look forward to an opportunity for a personal interview.
Last week I spoke with Jane Doe about the clinical director position at your facility. We both agreed that the job matches perfectly with my goals and qualifications.
I spent six years as clinical coordinator in charge of two 26-bed units at the Springfield facility. In that position I developed two new programs that are now widely used in clinical treatment.
My postgraduate fellowship in clinical research at Springfield University has prepared me to manage the experimental units at the main clinic. The attached resume will provide more details about my experience and education.
I am eager to meet with you to discuss how my qualifications could meet your needs.
I am writing to you in response to your Internet advertisement requesting applicants for the position of Technical Writer in Springfield University's archaeology laboratory. I hold bachelor's degrees in archaeology and English and have three seasons' experience in excavation and lab work, including data entry, artifact cataloging, and preparations for the various methods of artifact dating. In addition, I wrote the chapter detailing survey methods for Dr. John Doe's "Final Report on the Centerville Field School Project." This work involved transcribing the field notes onto Laboratory of Anthropology forms, mapping and recording sites by section, township, and province, as well as creating a narrative description of the project's survey methods.
The years spent in the English department have prepared me for the challenges of writing for a variety of readers, and much of my creative writing has been published. Also, under the guidance of Dr. Doe I have directed my efforts within archaeology toward writing. Archaeology needs writers to make it interesting, especially in this time of budget cuts and battles over land use.
I believe I would qualify as "proficient" in the use of most of the popular spreadsheet programs and other relevant computer applications. I have spent several months entering data and crunching numbers in the service of archaeology.
Please see the attached resume for further details of my qualifications. I will gladly provide references at your request. I can be reached at 555-5555. I look forward to meeting you in person and discussing my suitability for this position.
I am applying for the teaching position you advertised in The Springfield Herald. As you will notice from my enclosed resume, I have several years' experience as an English teacher and I recently earned my MA degree from Springfield University. During my graduate work I was particularly interested in adult education and did my thesis research in this area.
During my years of teaching ESL part-time, I have developed instructional materials designed to teach English as a second language to adults. I have also developed exceptional communication, and problem-solving skills, as well as computer literacy and a short learning curve with excellent retention, I also have effective interpersonal skills that give me leadership abilities as well as enable me to work either independently or with a team. At this time I am seeking a full-time teaching position. I am confident that my qualifications and experience will benefit your organization and would appreciate the opportunity to schedule an interview with you at your convenience. I may be reached at 555-5555. Enclosed is my current resume.
Thank you for your consideration. I look forward to hearing from you soon.
In response to your advertisement in the Springfield Herald, I wish to apply for the post of Office Manager. Prior to the death of my husband last year, we ran a successful carpet cleaning business for 22 years. I ran the office, supervising two office workers and a cleaning staff of 12.
Although my associate degree in accounting was acquired more than 20 years ago, I have built extensively on the skills I learned at school, including taking formal classes, several of them related to computer literacy. These are described in more detail in the attached resume.
I can offer your company a strong work ethic, a wealth of experience, and a willingness to learn. I would be pleased to discuss the position and my qualifications further when you have had a chance to review my resume. You can reach me at 555-5555.
Please consider me to work with you as a health/fitness specialist to support the development and delivery of corporate health and wellness programs. I am excited about the opportunity. I believe I would be a good fit for the R&M Health and Fitness position because of my past experience in corporate health and wellness programs and my BS degree in health. My additional abilities include:
* skills in teaching group exercise classes and step instruction developed as an instructor at ABC Fitness.
* skilled in overseeing daily operations, planning, promotion and evaluation of all health promotion programs as a result of my work at XYZ Fitness.
* certification in CPR and First Aid since 2018.
* excellent organization skills developed as a fitness specialist at ABC Fitness.
* expertise in the use of computer programs acquired during my research assistantship at NC State.
* a positive attitude in all fitness endeavors leading to strong interpersonal communication skills developed during my internship and following work at Total Fitness in 2017-2018.
I am sending you my resume as a MS Word attachment. I will be happy to send any additional information you may require.
I look forward to hearing from you and hopefully working with you soon.
I am writing to apply for the position of Administrative Assistant that was recently advertised in the Times News. If you review my credentials, I am sure you will see that I can make a meaningful contribution to your organization. I am a dedicated professional who thrives in a fast-paced environment, and I am adept at handling multiple responsibilities. Because I am a self-motivated individual, I work not only until the job is done, but until the job is done right.
Because of the education, skills, and experience I possess, I am well-equipped to meet the demands and challenges of this position head on. The company's success is my success, and I am ready to work hard to help your business expand and become more profitable. With my arsenal of qualifications, I am confident that I would perform very well in this position and become a real asset to your company. In return, this position offers me the challenges and responsibilities I have been seeking. I believe it is a win-win situation for both of us.
I would like to meet you in person to discuss my capabilities and how they coincide with the duties of this position. I can be reached by phone at 555-5555 or by e-mail at [email protected] Please contact me at your convenience, so that we can arrange an interview at a mutually agreeable time.
Thank you for considering my application. I look forward to hearing from you soon.
After discovering your employment listing in the (Name of Newspaper), I am writing today to submit my resume in application for the position of (Name of Position).
As my resume demonstrates, through my educational and work experiences, I have developed deep and diverse abilities, that enable me to perform as a strong and flexible (Name of Position) for your company. The extent of my understanding and talents surpasses the descriptions listed on my resume, however, and so I would appreciate the opportunity to speak with you personally about how I could offer unique and quality contributions to your company.
Please contact me at your earliest convenience to set up an interview. Because I am fascinated by the offerings of your company and excited about the possibility of working for (Name of Company), I will gladly adjust my schedule to allow for the opportunity to speak with you, either over the phone or in person. I appreciate your time and care in considering my application.
I am writing today in response to your employment listing in the (Name of Newspaper). While visiting (Name of Company)'s Web site to learn more about the purpose and direction of the company, I discovered exciting information about the company's history and objectives, and information that strengthens my conviction that my education and work experiences make me a perfect fit for both the position of (Name of Position) and to the overall purpose and atmosphere of your operation.
In the hope that you will personally review my experiences and qualifications, I have included my resume with this letter. I would also appreciate an opportunity to learn more about the position and to discuss my abilities in greater detail. Please contact me at any time to set up an interview, either in person or over the phone. I am very interested in your company and excited about the possibility of working as (Name of Position), and so I will gladly adjust my schedule to accommodate your needs. Thank you very much for your time and consideration. I look forward to hearing from you.
Responding to email notifications about a job position takes some strategy. When the nuances of personal interaction like voice inflection and nonverbal cues are absent, the sender's original intent can be misconstrued. These misunderstandings are difficult enough in interpersonal relationships, but when they happen in the professional world, it can cost you a job you worked hard to land. Be as simple, specific and brief as possible when corresponding with a potential employer by email.
One common email you may receive from a potential employer is a general response to your inquiry about a job posting. When you find a job online that you want to apply for, you generally send a resume and cover letter. After that, you could receive an email in return stating that the company received your information and is reviewing it. A response to this kind of email is sending back a simple thank you for the update. You can also take this opportunity to tell the company again how excited you are about interviewing for the position and reiterate one of the reasons from your cover letter expressing why you are interested in the role.
If you've already had either a phone or in-person interview with your potential employer, you may receive an email response thanking you for the interview and informing you that the company is still in the process of making a decision. In this case, take the opportunity to sell your attributes again. Thank the interviewer for his time and reiterate something from your interview that makes you stand out among other candidates. For example, if the two of you had a good laugh about your Martha-Stewart-like organizing skills, remind him of these qualities. In addition, if the interviewer is waiting for additional information from you, such a list of references, attach that to this email before you hit send.
The employer may use email to let you know that you landed the job. After you're done celebrating, sit down and send a return email to your new boss thanking him for selecting you for the position. Tell him that you're excited to do a good job for the company and that you can't wait to get started. If the email doesn't include it, ask your new employer what day he would like you to start, where you should park, if you should bring ID with you on your first day or any other questions that come to mind. Use this opportunity to reinforce to your new boss that he chose the right person for the position. Conversely, if you are no longer interested in the position, politely inform the interviewer of your decision.
You could receive a personalized email telling you that you didn't get the job. When you encounter an email like this, take a day so you can distance yourself from the disappointment before you respond. After you've taken some time, thank the employer for considering you for the position. Also include in your email that you are still interested in working for the company, if you are, and you would be happy to interview again should another position open. Even though you didn't get the job this time, you can end the relationship on a positive note.
You've successfully completed and posted your job resume and are eagerly manager to consider your cover letter and give you a response.
You’ve successfully completed and posted your job resume and are eagerly awaiting the status of your application.
Unfortunately, you don’t hear back from the recruiting firm and the suspense in your head has reached its limit. In these cases, it’s necessary to take a step back and take a nice long breath and think about how to follow-up with the company.
There is a fine line between annoying your potential employer — by sending numerous unwanted e-mails and trying to ascertain the status of your submitted application.
There are certain guidelines to follow before you send the designated e-mail to inquire about your follow-up.
Many candidates often feel uneasy about following up with their hiring managers due to the fear of coming off as “desperate” and “hopeless”. Follow-up emails are a normal procedure to bring the attention of your hiring manager back to your cover letter.
However, it’s important to practice restraint and give your cover letter sometime before you send a follow-up email.
By following through, you demonstrate a strong will and confidence to your hiring manager that the job means a lot to you. Give yourself a deadline and write it down on a piece of paper. About 7 working days should be ample time for your hiring manager to consider your cover letter and give you a response. If in this time, you haven’t heard back, then you need to consider sending a follow-up email.
It’s critical to not wait longer than 7 business days or the hiring process for your job placement may not be available. If you’ve sent your job application by email, many companies send back an intimation mail through auto-response systems that confirm your application has been received and give you a response date — either within 24 hours or 7 business working days.
One of the most frequently asked questions is whether you should call the company or send them an email to inquire about your job application status. A phone call should always be your last resort after you hear nothing back from your employer even after you’ve sent a follow-up mail.
A courtesy email to remind them of your status is always the way forward, an email can better convey your graciousness and intimate them about your job application.
Organizations tend to be busy all the time, the recruiter will usually prefer to exchange emails as they can quickly refer to the previous emails to understand who the candidate is. A phone call may not send the right signal as they might refer you back to sending a professional follow-up mail before getting back to your job application.
When writing the follow-up mail, it’s important to remind them exactly why you would make a great choice for their company.
Don’t talk about your achievements and accomplishments, you’ve already mentioned them in your job application. The follow-up mail is about redirecting them back to your job application and giving them a good positive reason for them to hire you.
Always remember, the company needs to hire you based on their requirements and not because of what you’ve accomplished.
Keep the information strictly linear to what they need and ensure you ask any questions that you have regarding the job application status. Politely request a date in which they can provide you with an answer to whether you’ve been approved or not.
To demonstrate superior qualities, you can also mention them to provide feedback incase they’ve rejected your application. Organizations prefer employees who think ahead in the future and tend to hire them for their insight.
In your follow-up mail, it’s a good idea to mention that you can stop by anytime at their offices to ensure a quick face-to-face interview can be conducted. Mentioning this showcases your confidence and willingness to go the extra mile for landing the job.
By following up within a week’s time you notify them that you’re a person that has clear priorities in life and time is a valuable resource that you don’t intend to waste.
By mentioning this important piece of information, you place yourself ahead of the competition and can be intimated when a slot opens for them to verify your qualifications and accomplishments. However, do ask them for a one-day heads-up to ensure you can be on time for your first interview.
Many follow-up emails by applicants tend to be overbearing and this tends to be a major turn-off to hiring managers.
Have confidence in your abilities, you don’t need to send them a mail basically asking them for a hand out on the job. No company likes to give jobs based on your personal life rather than your professional one, so leave out your sorrow tales and maintain your professional posture.
Follow-up emails should strictly be about inquiring your status on your job application and that’s it. Don’t waste valuable sentences and paragraphs describing how hard you worked to be where you are and why you need the job over everyone else.
Realistically speaking, everyone works hard to be where they are and hence, apply based on their unique accomplishments to set them apart.
While sending a follow-up email, it’s necessary to send the application to the correct email. Companies are known to keep various emails to address different issues, ensure you get the right email that corresponds to the hiring manager. If there are multiple emails you can always use the “Blind Carbon Copy or BCC” option located in your email provider and include all of them.
If in doubt, consult the company’s website or utilize the visiting card if you received one to check for an email address. You can also proceed to call up the company and request the email.
Some companies can have an escalation process for follow-up letters that haven’t been responded to. Ensure you’ve done your research on the company page to sort out the right email from the rest and submit your follow-up email through the right procedure.
Don’t jump the gun, it’s crucial to have patience in sensitive matters such as these. Sometimes, it may take the company more time to analyze a list of candidates before they send out their responses. Other times, it could be an emergency within the company and a delay in sending out your status.
Give the company enough time to reply, wait for a week or two and then decide to write a follow-up letter. Ensure you politely request a response and don’t resort to any offensive or a non-professional tone.
Be confident in your abilities, if you have the right skills, there is absolutely no reason to fret.
One of the biggest nuisances that employers face daily is the fact that candidates send them a boring wall of text with an atrocious email template that doesn’t match a professional tone. Choose simple background colors and eye-friendly fonts to catch the reader’s attention. Ensure the colors are bright and not dark to add a positive influence.
Always update yourself with the latest email templates, don’t use email templates that are outdated. Avoid trying to send a white paper background as this is the most common type of job application letter that managers see. By beautifying your letter, you show your employer that you are unique and have something distinct from the rest.
Your follow-up mail should contain no grammatical mistakes and should be short and concise. Do mention the follow-up procedure if you happen to send an email via the subject line. Think of this as your second “First” impression to your employer and you need to impress them if you are going to land the job.
Utilize online tools to ensure your follow-up mail is free from spelling errors. If you’re using “Microsoft Word”, ensure the automatic proofreader is turned on to fish out your weak grammatical verbs for you. Spend enough time to edit, refine, and improvise your letter. As a matter of fact, read your letter in your own voice to know if there is a weak phrase that you need to eliminate.
Don’t resort to an aggressive attitude and begin accusing your employer of delaying the process. Your application could not be read due to a very busy schedule on their end or an emergency. By trying to accuse, you show exactly why you weren’t picked and you might also end up being blacklisted by the company.
Maintain a gracious tone and show them why you’d be a perfect fit for the company by trying to understand why they weren’t able to read your application letter. Never send recycled emails that were written by you for a previous company to send to your current hiring manager. Always write a fresh follow-up mail personalizing the company you are applying to.
Here are actionable strategies that you can use to write your follow up letters. The information is compiled by Alex Berman in an easy-to-follow video guide.
The following sections are some of the most important aspects to consider while writing a job application.
Always mention your hiring manager’s name and if you don’t have an official name, you can proceed to add “To whosoever, it may concern” or “Respect Sir/Madam” as a reference.
Mention the job description you’ve applied to and make it clear. It’s critical to mention the job description in your subject line while sending the email.
The name of the company you are applying to. Address the company at the start of the email to ensure you have written a fresh email putting them in the perspective.
If you are sending your follow-up letter by email, it’s necessary to write an appealing subject line so the contact in question understands at first glance what the email is about. As a rule of thumb, always mention your full name along with the job description as the subject line, unless mentioned otherwise.
Your current address and full name so the company can contact you. Ensure you enter the correct pin code, if the company sends you a package it will be addressed here. You should also provide an alternate contact number along with your primary number, just in case.
Ensure you follow good formatting rules and use paragraphs often to separate information. By doing this, you ensure the reader can absorb exactly what is written in the letter without him having to re-read the letter all over again.
Try to keep your paragraphs limited to just 5-6 sentences each to ensure concise text.
Your signature is required to ensure it’s really you that is writing the letter and you can also place the date either at the start of the letter or next to the signature. Ensure you double check the date to eliminate any embarrassing incidents.
In the next section, a sample letter is provided utilizing all the above sections to give you an understanding of how to write a formal job application.
The following e-mail is a sample letter for applicants to grasp the idea of creating a professional job application and how to place information in their respective sections.
[Hiring Manager Name]
Mr. Adam Bell
Dear [Hiring Manager Name],
I submitted a letter of application and a resume earlier this month for the position of [Job Description] advertised in the San Francisco Chronicle. To date, I haven’t heard back from your company. I would kindly like you to take the time and request the confirmation of the same.
I have a keen interest in working at [Hiring Company Name], and I fully believe my skills and experience are a capable match for this position. My seven years as an award-winning [Job Description]at [Former Company Name] make me a strong fit for this position and company.
Please let me know if you need any further materials from me.
I can be reached at [Your Contact Number] or [Your E-mail]. I look forward to hearing from you.
Thank you for your consideration.
Signature (hard copy letter)[Your Signature]
Here is a YouTube video of noted Job coaching expert — Melanie Szlucha. She has plenty of useful tips on offer on how to write a follow-up application.
While it can feel like a lifetime has passed, the best you can do is wait after you’ve sent your follow-up letter. The worst-case scenario is you get rejected and you don’t lose anything but get your hopes up and pick up where you left off. The best-case scenario being you end up in your dream job and you’ve set up your professional career for a great start.
Always remember to face your challenges whether you receive good or bad news. A follow-up letter can do wonders instead of giving up altogether. It’s easier to misunderstand and think that your resume was rejected but there are a 100 reasons to why your job application hasn’t turned up with a response.
It's hard not to feel disappointed when you get turned down for a job, Writing a follow-up email in response to a rejection letter can sometimes feel like you're.