March 4, 2019, by Katy Johnson

How And Why To Get Feedback From Your Interview

By Caroline Nolan, Employability Officer 

Your pre-performance adrenaline that kicks in when you go for an interview can all too quickly slide into a negative post-match analysis if you don’t get the job. How can you face asking why, when all you want to do is scream and yell at them for not seeing how wonderful you are? 

Recruiters are increasingly encouraging candidates to seek feedback from their interviewers, to find out where they went wrong, and how they could do better next time.  By asking for feedback you’re tapping into their perceptions of you so you might be able to see for the first time what needs to be tweaked, changed or improved in your interview performance. 

Here are some tips for thinking about how and why you should ask for that post-interview feedback.  

1. First steps 

Write down your reflections on the interview while you remember in order to help you with your decision making and to improve your performance.   

  • What questions were you asked? 
  • How did you respond? 
  • What was the interviewer like? 
  • Did they leave a good impression? 

For your next interview consider: 

  • What did you do well in the interview? 
  • Was there anything you would do differently? 
  • How else could you prepare? 
  • Who could support you with this? 

2. How to ask for feedback 

Companies are not obliged to give feedback so if your rejection letter offers it, take a deep breath and say “yes please”. After all, you’ve already been turned down. What’s to lose?  

If you receive a rejection email, try to respond within 24 hours.  Alternatively, if they call you and tell you the bad news over the phone, ask for feedback there and then.   

You can also be proactive, pick up the phone and ask for feedback.  Have your interview self-reflection notes to hand when you make the call.  You could start the conversation by saying:

 “While I’m disappointed I didn’t get the job, I would appreciate the chance to get some honest feedback as I am still very interested to work with you in the future.”  

3. Handling the feedback 

The email you send or call you make, should not be about changing the recruiter’s mind as the decision has already been made.  Part of asking for feedback is accepting it and listening to it – how else will you improve? 

Stay calm and professional,  you are now gathering feedback and information to help with future applications and boost your chances of getting a job offer in your next interview. 

4. Leave the door open 

You should leave things on good terms so they remember you as a good candidate that they may think of in the future for other positions. You can do this by ending your call or email by saying: 

“I really appreciate your time and although I didn’t get the job this time, if a different role comes up that you think I might be a better fit for, please don’t hesitate to contact me. Thanks again for your time spent discussing this opportunity with me.” 

To help you succeed during the recruitment process, check out our website  for a wealth of interview resources. If you’ve got an interview coming up soon, chat to our advisers to help you prepare – book an appointment on MyCareer.   

Posted in Careers Advice