The interview went really well, but you didn’t land the job. Was it something you did or said? Or was it something completely out of your control? You may never know the truth, but you can certainly take some comfort in knowing that it may have had absolutely nothing to do with you.
The obvious answer may be that there was a better candidate. While you may have felt you were perfect for the job, there may have been another candidate with direct industry experience or the hiring manager may have chosen an internal candidate, making for an easier hire. You may have been rejected because you happen to look like a disliked relative or because there was another candidate with a distinct advantage—perhaps one with a connection to the hiring manager or a senior executive.
Perhaps no one was hired. Budgets change, needs change and business changes. If you discover that the job requisition was withdrawn, be sure to stay in contact with the target employer. You may still be hired at a later date and, by remaining fresh in the recruiter’s mind, you can be an easy hire once the requisition reopens.
And here’s another tip: sometimes new hires get terminated or leave of their own volition within a few weeks or months—and this can happen at any level from front desk receptionist to CEO. If you know you were one of the top candidates and still want to work for that employer, write a brief note explaining your continuing interest in the position if the selected candidate doesn’t work out for any reason.
Put what you’ve learned here into perspective. Yes, job search can be brutal, so don’t drive yourself crazy trying to figure out why you didn’t land the job. Take that energy and apply it towards the next opportunity and use the strategies mentioned here for a better outcome.
Ellie Vargo, MRW, CCMC