How To Reject A Candidate As Painlessly As Possible

how to reject a candidate

Running a business or managing a company can be a difficult yet rewarding job. However, there are some tasks that can cause anxiety in even the strongest leaders. Rejecting a potential candidate can cause pain to both parties. Read on to discover how to reject a candidate a painlessly as possible.

Get in touch after the interview

There is nothing worse than waiting around weeks after an interview for that phone call. For most candidates, the most painful part of the employment process is that the interviewer never gets in touch with them. A candidate invests a lot of time and energy into applying for a position. They fill out an application, write up a winning cover letter and attend a lengthy interview. If they are unsuccessful in the application, the least a manager can do is to send them an email letting them know that they were unsuccessful. Always encourage them to apply again for positions in the future. Just because they weren’t right for the position now, doesn’t mean they won’t be in the future.

Rejection email

So now you know that you should contact the rejected candidate, but what should you actually write? Here is a brief list of ways to make your rejection email as painless as possible.

  • Let the candidate know that you were overwhelmed with applications.
  • That you were impressed with the level of talent and experience from the applicant pool.
  • Thank them for their time and effort.
  • Cut to the chase and let them know that unfortunately, you are unable to offer them a position at this time.
  • Encourage the applicant to apply for positions again in the future.
  • Reassure them that you will keep them in mind for future positions that would suit their skills and interest.

In some cases, if the applicant pool was small you may also offer the applicant specific feedback. This may seem harsh, but the applicant will appreciate constructive advice to help them prepare for more interviews in the future.

Don’t waste time

There should be a few levels of the application process. First, encourage interested candidates to send through their CV and cover letter. This first step in the hiring process is critical. You need to set specific requirements and weed out unsuitable candidates based on their application.

Read through the cover letter and CV to make sure they have strong written skills, related experience, and any relevant education or training. Not only will this process help you to cut down on the time and energy of your human resources staff, but also you won’t waste a candidates’ time either.

It’s also a good idea to send through polite and brief rejection email to candidates who didn’t make it through the first round. As always, encourage them to apply again in the future. This will show off your company in the best way possible and send a positive message.

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