How to Ask Your Recruiter for Feedback if You Didn’t Get the Job

Asking for feedback can be nerve-wracking, especially if you were just turned down for a job. But its that experience that will make you stronger, which is exactly why we encourage candidates to ask for feedback after the interview. This is particularly important if you are working with a recruiter. These professionals work directly with job candidates and employers each day, and they’ve seen just about everything you can imagine. Asking for their help, even if you didn’t get the job, helps you improve your chances of landing the next interview you have.

Why Didn’t I Get The Job?

Instead of just blindly accepting the employer’s version of a “Dear John,” letter (“We regret to inform you that we’ve selected someone else for the job.”), now is actually the time to redouble your efforts to land the next big thing. While the rejection stings, it is the time to take the feedback you can get, learn from it, and improve.

Recruiters are pretty approachable people, and, if you’ve gone through the interview process, they obviously liked you enough to put you forward for the role. You’ve developed a professional relationship base on mutual trust, so you should feel comfortable asking the recruiter for candid feedback on how you did during the interviews and what you could have improved upon. You can do this right after the interview process and don’t have to wait for the “ding” letter from the job you didn’t get. Try sending an email right after the interview to see if they got any feedback from the client. That‘s also a time to ask if the recruiter has information on how you did during the interviews. Here are two tips to consider:

  • If you’re at the mid-mark in your career, you probably already know instinctively how you did during the interview as soon as you completed it. But asking for very specific feedback from your recruiter and start with the positive, which will make it easier for them to share and you to hear. Ask questions during this process to start an active back and forth on how you can improve.
  • At the executive level, it’s a professional courtesy to engage in dialogue after an interview. It’s more of a peer-to-peer discussion that is easier to engage in, instead of a supplicant/applicant that can feel intimidating.

If your recruiter seems reluctant to engage about this, try the backdoor. If your references were called, try reaching out to them to see what they were asked. This will help you hone your interviews to highlight details that you think the employer was particularly interested in.

If your recruiter doesn’t send any details, give it a week, and try again. Some agencies have strict rules about the feedback they give and others may require recruiters to not respond to your request due to liability concerns. No matter what, keep the conversation friendly and never burn a bridge to a recruiter that you may need down the road.

You’ve heard the adage, “Get back on the horse,” and that is exactly what you should do if you are rejected after the interview. The good news is there are dozens of new opportunities that crop up each day. Call Blackstone to find out more.

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