Job searching can be a frustrating and sometimes disheartening experience, especially when you put in so much effort and time into tailoring your resume and cover letter for every application. Not to mention preparing for interviews and taking time out of you day to attend interviews or complete other steps in the recruitment process. However, sometimes candidates do all the right things and perform well in the recruitment process but still don’t get the job.
Here are 7 reasons why this may have happened that have absolutely nothing to do with you or your performance:
- The company decided not to fill the position: Occasionally, companies may decide that they no longer need to fill a position for a variety of reasons, including restructuring or shifting priorities in the business.
- The company has a pre-existing internal candidate: Sometimes companies already have an internal candidate lined up for the position and are required to post the job publicly to comply with company policy. In such cases, your application may not have been given serious consideration as they already had a strong preference to hire from within.
- The company’s budget altered: Companies may start hiring for a position, but then the budget for that role is changed or cut, meaning the job is no longer available. In a perfect world this would be communicated to any applicants but this is often not the case.
- The company changed the job requirements after posting the advertisement: Sometimes, even after receiving a high number of applications, companies may adjust the job requirements as they come to the realisation that they are not getting the type of candidate that they need applying. In such cases, your experience and skillset may no longer meet the new requirements for the role.
- The hiring manager or team changed: There can be changes in the team such as an unexpected resignation of the manager or another team member. This can lead to a change in the hiring decision or a shift in hiring priorities.
- The company received an abundance of quality applicants: Even if you have all the necessary qualifications, skills and experience you may not get invited to an interview as company can be very particular about who they take to the next stage of the process. Often it then come down to specific industry experience that helps them decide between a high number of highly capable applicants. Candidates need to understand that often there is nothing ‘wrong’ with their resume or cover letter, it is just that there are a lot of great candidates to choose from.
- The company experienced unforeseen circumstances: Sometimes, external events or industry disruption can cause a company to put a hiring freeze in place or change their recruitment priorities. This could include a shift in the market or sudden economic changes.
Candidates need to keep all these factors in mind when undertaking their job search. Although it can be disheartening to receive rejections, try not to take it personally. Seek advice from a career coach or resume writer to ensure that your documents are considered ‘best practise’ and focus on applying for the roles where you are confident that you meet most of the selection criteria. In addition, don’t rely on applying only for advertised jobs. Network your butt off, connect with recruiters specialising in your industry and work on maximising your personal brand.