How to Decline a Job Interview With a Letter Sample

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Sometimes after applying for a job, you may find that the position no longer seems like a good match. If you are contacted about arranging an interview for a job you are no longer interested in, you will need to politely decline the job interview. Many times, the simplest way to do this is via a letter or email.

There are many reasons you may have decided, after submitting your application and resume, that you no longer want this particular job.

You may have done more research into the position or the company and discovered that your ideals are not compatible. You may have been anticipating relocating, and then had a change in plans. The position you applied for might have been less than you are qualified for, and in the time since you first applied you have been offered a more appropriate job.

Here is an example of a letter sent via email to decline a job interview. There is no need to give a reason for turning down the interview. It's best to keep your letter simple and concise, because you may be interested in applying to the company again in the future.

Sample Letter Declining an Interview Invitation

Subject Line of Email Message: Interview Invitation - Your Name

Email Message:

Dear Name:

Thank you very much for considering me for the position of Job Title and for inviting me to interview with Company Name. However, I would like to withdraw my application for this position.

I sincerely appreciate your taking the time to review my application.

Again, thank you for your consideration.

Best Regards,

Your Name
Email address
Phone

Tips and Cautions About Sending a Letter Declining a Job Interview Invitation

Be sure. Once you've declined the job interview, you can't go back. You might be able to apply for future positions, or even the same job later on, if circumstances change – that is, after all, one of the main reasons to send a formal, polite letter declining the invitation.

But you won't be able to say yes to this opportunity for an interview after you've said no. Try to do so, and you'll risk coming off as unreliable, flaky, indecisive, or worse.

Be prompt. While you need to be sure about your decision not to go forward with the interview, you should also respond to an employer’s invitation to meet as quickly as possible. This is especially true if you've already made solid plans for a formal interview. Here's how to cancel the interview, if you've already scheduled a meeting.

Be respectful of the hiring manager's time and priorities. If you're not going to go forward with the interview process, it's important to step aside as soon as possible so that an interested candidate can take your place.

Be courteous. Remember that you want to leave the door open for future opportunities (or, at the very least, make sure that you don't slam it shut). Most industries are very small worlds, and hiring managers do network with other human resources personnel at other companies to identify and help place qualified job candidates.

Be rude in your communications with the hiring manager, and you might wind up shut out of other jobs that are more in line with your goals.

You certainly would nix any chance you might have had to be considered for employment with their organization in the future.

Be vague. The purpose of the letter is to let the hiring manager know that your plans have changed, so that he or she can move forward with another candidate. You don't need to provide them with specific reasons why you're no longer interested.

Although you might feel like you need to apologize or justify your decision not to interview, doing this will inevitably put you in a bad light because any explanation you offer will most likely be viewed as a rationale for your rejection of an employer’s interest in you. It’s best just to let them know that your intentions have changed without explaining why. Most interviewers will let it go at that, and be thankful that you kept them in the loop and allowed them the time to arrange an interview with an alternate candidate.

Read More: Job Rejection Letters | Interview Invitations