You probably know someone (or are someone) who dreads rejection. I actually know someone who applied to 30 colleges and then refused to check the mail and instructed their parents and sister to only hand them packets from schools and not thin envelopes out of fear of reading rejection letters. Myself, I applied to UCONN and one other school and was accepted into both. Spent the money I saved on not doing to many applications on DP dough my first few weeks… and somehow not gaining the freshmen 15. To get to my main point though, rejection happens and knowing how to respond to it during your career search is vital.
Let’s first start with what NOT to do. Despite being rejected from the position you were seeking you still want to maintain an air of professionality. Though you did not receive this job you might still be able to network with the hiring manager in the future or receive feedback that will help you in your continued job search. So when responding (and this should go without saying) don’t end your letter with a sad face emoji. You also do not want to come off angry or accusatory.
It is fine to be inquisitive, ask for feedback on your interview that could help you in your continued job search. A general job rejection letter will typically be short with not much information though some hiring managers/companies might go the extra mile and provide feedback right away in the rejection letter itself. You may not agree with the criticism but show appreciation that they took the time to share that evaluation with you. Below is a good example of how to reply to a rejection letter.
“While I find it unfortunate that I will not have this opportunity, I appreciate you getting back to me. Additionally I value that you took the time to meet with me and allowed me to learn about your organization. Our discussion and my own research have affirmed my desires to be in this industry. If you could I would really value any feedback that you could provide. This would certainly help me in my job search. I hope you find success in your chosen candidate and thanks again for the opportunity”
Keeping it short, keep it professional, and keep it moving as there are other opportunities that require your focus.