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I have a friend who has applied for more than a dozen jobs. She’s quite qualified at what she does.

But right now she’s disappointed because she hasn’t heard one word from any of the companies she has applied, leaving her wondering if they even received her material.

To solve that mystery, all she would need is a rejection letter.

“At least then, I would know they received my material and even looked at it,” she said. “I really dislike not getting a rejection letter.”

She’s even joked about starting a company called “Rejection Letters,” so she can write them for companies.

“Writing a rejection letter is probably the easiest thing to write,” she said. “Here’s what I would write.”

“Dear (Place person’s name here),

Thank you for your resume and letter indicating your interest in being a writer for Rejection Letters Inc.

While we appreciate the time you invested in applying for the job, unfortunately your job skills do not match what we are currently looking for in an employee.

We wish you the best in your job search.

Sincerely,

Kali

President of Rejection Letters Inc.

My friend said a 67 word rejection letter would do a great deal to helping a company’s image. Not receiving a rejection letter means the company doesn’t care.

There are a million reasons why companies don’t send out rejections letters from not having enough time to having too many to write.

And then there’s the best excuse – that rejection letters are a thing of the past – like thank you letters.

I happen to believe that thank you letters and rejection letters are both good manners and great public relations.

So as a small business owner do you have an obligation to send out a rejection letter?

Here’s my insight:

Always send a letter …

  1. If you interviewed a potential job candidate. Let’s pretend you invited Susan Dill for a job interview and spent an hour discussing her qualifications and taking her on a tour of your company. Let’s say she walks away from the interview feeling it went great. Then hears nothing from you. In my opinion, that’s just rude and inconsiderate. The time it takes to write a simple rejection letter is worth the good public relations it will do for your company.
  2. If your friend convinces you to interview his nephew, son, uncle…. You may being doing your friend a favor by interviewing his relative but you will do yourself a bigger favor by sending a rejection letter. A rejection letter prevents you from explaining why the relative wasn’t hired and keeps the job interview process a little more professional than personal.

Why sending a rejection letter is a good idea:

  1. It is good public relations. What? Good public relations? Yes. Even though you are rejecting the person as an employee, you want to keep the door open for the person to be a customer.
  2. Treat others the way you want to be treated. How would you feel if you applied for a job and never heard a word? By sending a rejection letter, it gives people closure. By not sending one, it leaves them wondering about a lot things. Sending a rejection letter is common courtesy.
  3. Just because the candidate isn’t a good fit now, doesn’t mean he or she won’t be in the future. I know a lot of people who took rejection and made it them more determined to get the skills so they could work at the company that rejected them.

One question many employers ask is what do I do if I get more than 100 letters for a job? Do I have to respond to each one?

Yes and no. It all depends. With computer programing it’s not too difficult to generate a letter that sends the same rejection letter to all 100 candidates.

Or you could put on the application, due to the amount of applications we receive, we may not be able to respond to all inquiries.

I think it’s absolutely essential to send a letter to everyone you interview.

And if you don’t have the time, let me know.

I have a friend who has a great idea for a company and who has the manners to respond appropriately to each candidate.

 

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