How to Respond to a Job Rejection Email (with Templates)

You went through rounds of face-to-face interviews. You had met the senior management team and even the CEO of the company. They were all friendly and the interviews went really well (you think). You knew that you had reached the last stage of the hiring process. The only thing left to do was to wait for the decision.

You refreshed your inbox for a million times and when an email from the company you applied for finally appeared, you immediately opened it. Sadly, the email didn’t start with “Congratulations”. You were devastated and wondered where did it go wrong. In the midst of disappointment, you realized that you still need to politely reply to the rejection email.

Perhaps this question will pop up in your mind: “why should I bother to reply at all?” Even though it’s tempting to just click on the “Delete” button and forget about it, but remind try to think far. For example, it could be a great chance to show your professionalism or even build a good relationship for future opportunities! Plus, you get to ask for feedback by sending a reply. Honest feedback is not only helpful for your job search but also allows you to improve on your weaknesses.

Here are some of the templates we find useful:

Example 1:

Dear Mr./Ms./Mrs. [Name],

Thank you for notifying me about the outcome of my application.

I’ll admit that I’m disappointed that I won’t be able to be a part of the [Company] team, but it was great to meet you during the interview where you have shared your experience and about the company itself.

I’m still continue to follow [Company]’s journey in [Cite company’s vision/working goal/ or their responsibility] especially [Cite project/development that was mentioned during your interview]. For I truly believe it.

It would be greatly appreciated if you can share with me your feedback about my interview performance. Your feedback would be absolutely valuable for me to continue improving and making progress in my job hunt.

Again, thank you very much for the opportunity. I wish the [Company] community success and growth.

Best wishes,

[Your Name]

Example 2:

Dear Mr./Ms./Mrs. [Name],

Thank you for your update. I appreciate the time you have spent reviewing my application and conducting my interview.

While it is disappointing that I did not get in the company I believe can help me grow, I still look forward to working with the [Company] community in the future.

I wish you all the best. Thank you so much.

With respect,

[Your Name]

Did you notice any difference between the 2 examples above? Example 1 is relatively more comprehensive, detailed, and honest.. You can tell that the applicant elaborated more on the details mentioned during the interview such as the company’s vision and future project. And the applicant also asked for feedback to help with his job search. Whereas example 2 is less detailed and more straightforward.

Remember, not all job applications can get updates. Say for example, not all companies or recruiters care much about informing applicants that they didn’t cut it. Perhaps it’s not that they are emotionless and selfish, some people just don’t see the need to have any further connection with those whom they will never see again.

Along our career journey we must always prepare ourselves for rejections. Not to encourage you to be pessimistic, but it’s important that we be realistic and expect things to not go our way. Of course, nobody wants to get a rejection email. However, responding to one professionally is definitely a better move than hitting the “Delete” button.

Hope these templates can help you to craft a polite and constructive message. You might still need some time to get over it, but at least you demonstrated your professionalism the best you could. Good luck and never quit! As the old saying goes, “when a door closes, opens a thousand windows”.

Find these tips useful? We have more career advice, workplace tips, and job search tips on our blog. Don’t forget to check them out!

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