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The interview process does not end when a candidate is chosen for the open position. In fact, there still is one step remaining; answering the tough questions from the candidates who were not chosen. One of the toughest questions human resource managers and recruiters face all the time is “Why didn’t you hire me?” This questions is not easy to answer, which is why we will provide you with some excellent methods to handling such a situation.

Always Begin on a Positive Note

The most important thing to remember when asked this question is that you should begin your answer on a positive note. If you jump right into the negative aspects as to why the candidate was not chosen for the job, you likely will not leave a good impression, hurting any potential relationship in the future. The positive note can include anything strong about their resume, their cover letter, their interview skills or their work experience.

Discuss Points of Improvement

After beginning the conversation on a positive note you can move into the more difficult aspect of the answer; areas in which the candidate must improve. Whenever you provide a candidate with an area of improvement, it is a good idea to offer a solution to the problem. Instead of just saying that the candidate did not have enough education, make sure you explain why their education was not enough. Let them know if they did not hold a specific degree required to work the position because this is something they can solve simply by going back to school.

End the Conversation Politely

As with any type of conversation, you must end it politely with the rejected candidate. If he or she was in consideration for the position until the very end, make sure you let them know this. Tell them to rectify one of the issues you discussed in this conversation and encourage them to apply again in a couple of months. Let the rejected client know that their resume will be on file for a period of at least 6 months. On the other side of things, if the rejected candidate was not a realistic choice for the position, be sure you let them down nicely for a second time. Wish them good luck in their endeavors and end the conversation.

If you follow the steps outlined in this post, you should have no problem answering such a tough question when posed by job candidates whom you have rejected.


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