Skip to main content

Didn’t Get the Job? Here’s What You Can Do

Published on: Apr 6, 2023

Finding out you didn’t get the job when you seemingly aced the interview can be incredibly disappointing. Perhaps you didn’t get the job because there was a better internal candidate who was more familiar with the business. Or maybe the employer changed the scope of the role. Whatever the reason may be, thankfully, there are plenty of steps you can take to move forward.


Reframe your thinking

Put things into perspective: there were likely tons of candidates that applied for the same position as you did and only one person got hired. In other words, you’re not the only one who didn’t get the job. In fact, at some point in life, everyone loses out on an opportunity (e.g. job, promotion, a project etc.). So, don’t make job rejection a statement about you personally.

Say thank you

No matter what stage of the job process you’re at, thank you notes can be incredibly valuable. On top of that, expressing your gratitude for the opportunity to interview not only helps you stand out, but it can help you keep the connections open in case future opportunities become available.

Whether you’re responding by email or over the phone, be sure that your thank you note is professional, short and sweet. No need to rehash all the big or little mistakes you’ve felt you made during the interview.  


Seek areas of improvement

Once you’ve come to grips with the employer’s decision, it’s important to review and reflect on the overall process. Begin by giving yourself constructive criticism. For example, is your goal of finding a job within your specific timeframe realistic? Before applying to the job, did you do enough research about the company? Are you inflating your actual job experience and interviewing for jobs outside of your expertise?  

Consider also asking for feedback from the interviewer when you send a thank you note. Not all interviewers will be willing to provide feedback so be sure to discuss your interview with trusted individuals who can share objective feedback with you. Maybe try out a mock interview in order to practice and gain insight from others on how you can improve.


Strengthen your skills

It’s a good idea to keep your skills sharp and up-to-date, especially if you’re not currently employed. HRPA offers a wide variety of professional development opportunities throughout the year that can help you fine tune your interviewing skills, boost confidence and provide a discussion point during your next interview.

Depending on the issue, you can take part in more formal training or even find a mentor or become a mentor through the HRPA Mentorship Program. Additionally, volunteering as a mentor or on another HRPA committee or team can be a great way to build out your resume and demonstrate your employability.


Don’t stop your job search
Even though rejection stings, remember to keep up the momentum and stay hungry for new opportunities. You can start by setting up a profile with Hire Authority, HRPA’s exclusive-to-members job board. Since the pandemic, HR professionals have been in high demand. For example, recently, Hire Authority saw 1559 job postings by employers and 701 new employer accounts.[1]

Hire Authority features HR jobs from a number of different sectors and companies, and you can use its search functions to find a job that truly aligns with your expectations. After all, upon further reflection you may realize that the job you interviewed for wasn’t even the right fit for you. Use your experience to help refine your job search. Don’t forget to update your resume and LinkedIn profile accordingly.

If you’re an HR student or recent grad, take your job search one step further by attending the HRPA Student Career Fair on April 26. Here you’ll connect with top employers, who are actively recruiting students and recent grads for entry-level and internship positions in HR.


Bottom line: If a recent interview didn’t go your way, don’t fret! Instead move forward and focus on what you can learn from the experience.

Above all, take comfort in knowing that regulated HR professionals are in high demand so dust yourself off and continue your job search on Hire today.