How to tell a candidate they didn’t get the job

With the high unemployment rate in South Africa, telling a candidate that they didn’t get the job can be tough. Compassion and clear communication go a long way towards making the process easier. Knowing how to deliver the news properly will also help to maintain the image of your brand and to ensure that applicants stay in your talent pool.

Looking for candidates to fill your vacancies? Post a free advert on Job Mail today or get in contact with our friendly consultants for more information.

How To Tell Candidate They Didn't Get The Job | Job Mail

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Practice good communication with your candidate

Clear communication is an important part of the hiring process. It ensures that the candidate you want to hire has a good experience and it influences how they view your company. It also enables you to tell unsuccessful applicants that they didn’t get the job with compassion and respect for their time. Make sure that the applicants know where they stand during each phase of the hiring process. Don’t leave them wondering whether they were successful or not.

Communication should be professional and responsive as well as delivered on time. Stick to your promises. If you tell candidates that you’ll reply to them within a certain time period, make sure that you do it. You can tell a candidate that they didn’t get the job by sending a professional email or by making a phone call.

How To Tell Candidate They Didn't Get The Job | Job Mail

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Provide feedback to your candidate but avoid justifying your decision

In the early stages of the hiring process, a generic rejection message may be sufficient. However, when candidates have made it to the final rounds, you may decide whether you want to offer them feedback. If you choose to, you can congratulate them on making it so far and give them more information on why you chose someone else. Acknowledge their strengths and maybe make suggestions on where they can develop their skills and experience further.

But, be careful! Although it’s good to provide unsuccessful applicants with constructive feedback, in some instances the candidate may try to argue their case. Alternatively, you can maintain a professional approach by thanking them for applying and wishing them well on their job search.

Provide Feedback To Candidates | Job Mail

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Avoid giving candidates false hope

While you may want to soften the rejection of a candidate with a few words of encouragement, avoid giving the person false hope. Don’t say that you’ll keep in touch with them for future opportunities if you don’t plan to follow through. If you think the applicant is a good candidate for future positions, rather keep their CV aside and contact them when there is an opportunity available.

Don't Give Candidates False Hope | Job Mail

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Don’t delay delivering the news

Telling a candidate that they didn’t get the job is an uncomfortable experience so it’s understandable if you’re tempted to put it off. However, delaying the task of delivering the news will only make things worse. Once the candidate knows that they weren’t successful they can continue with their job search and hopefully find another position that’s a better match.

Don't Delay Giving Candidates The Bad News | Job Mail

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Suggest connecting to the company’s social media

Once you’ve delivered the news to the unsuccessful candidate, you can suggest that they stay connected with your company through social media. They can use these social media platforms to look out for other employment opportunities that are better suited to their capabilities and experience.

Kindness and respect go a long way when you’re telling a candidate that they didn’t get the job. Not only is this approach beneficial for the applicants, but it’s good for your company too.

Let Candidates Follow Your Company On Social Media | Job Mail

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Are you looking for exceptional applicants to fill a vacancy? Contact our friendly consultants to find out how you can get access to top-quality applicants on Job Mail today.


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How to tell a candidate they didn't get the job
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How to tell a candidate they didn't get the job
With the high unemployment rate in South Africa, telling a candidate that they didn’t get the job can be tough. We have a few tips to make it easier...
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1 Response

  1. Momna Akram says:

    telling them this way can be an act of kindness
    good job

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