24 May 2019
How to receive job interview feedback

It is always disappointing to discover that you did not get the job following an interview. You prepared and researched, turned up early enough without interrupting other meetings, wore your best attire and answered all questions confidently but still, the answer was no. The reason for not being successful for a position can be one of many; a stronger candidate was in the running, you didn’t have the right experience for the role or the overall ‘fit’ wasn’t right. Asking for job interview feedback is a chance to improve your performance next time and take yourself closer to your ultimate goal –  the dream job.

Don’t see this as a knockback, but the opportunity to work on certain aspects of your job interviewing skills for next time. Each job interview will give you much-needed experience and help build your confidence up once you are aware of the type of questions that might be thrown your way. Asking a simple question such as “Is there anything that I could have done differently?” may reward you with enlightening feedback that you did not consider to be important.

Here are a couple of examples of how to ask for feedback:

  • I appreciate the phone call/email and am highly disappointed that I was not chosen. What do you think I could do in order to be a better candidate in the future?
  • Was there anything, in particular, I could have done differently?
  • I appreciate you taking the time to speak with me about the company and position. Is there anything I could do or change in order to be a stronger candidate next time?
  • I would appreciate it if you could keep me in mind if a position opens in which you think I would be a better fit

Following an interview, it is good to evaluate yourself:

  • What questions did you handle particularly well?
  • What questions did you struggle with?
  • Did you feel confident and prepared?
  • If you could change anything about the interview, what would it be?

This will allow time to process what occurred, and also make personal notes for future reference.

If the answer was that you did not have enough experience, but you were impressed by the company and keen to work there in the future, adding a simple line “I always welcome the opportunity to speak about roles in the future” may lead to another position opening up that you may be perfect for! Remember to not openly disagree with the comments you receive or make excuses for your performance.  Nor should you take out your frustrations on the interviewer. Use this as a positive for when you next interview again.

If you ask a recruiter or hiring manager for specific feedback regarding your candidacy for a job, you might learn something useful that you can use in future interviewing experiences. The interviewer is under no obligation to provide feedback on your interview, so if they do take the time to help you then remember that manners cost nothing and say thank you.


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