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Why you’re not getting the job and what you can do about it

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about 1 month ago by Alice Neal

Why you’re not getting the job and what you can do about it

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Being turned down is an unfortunate but expected part of the job-hunting process, whether you didn’t hear back from a firm or you made it to final stage interviews and didn’t get the offer, and it could be a multitude of reasons why you’re not now handing your notice in and prepping for your new role.

Your CV wasn’t eye-catching enough

It is a well-known fact that you have between 5 to 8 seconds for your CV to catch a HR manager’s eye. If yours is poorly designed, has grammatical errors or has irrelevant information, it could be that your CV was discarded before you even had a chance to prove your worth. You can see some top CV writing tips from CV library here.

Your salary expectations weren’t realistic

When asked the question about your earning potential, did you answer truthfully and had you done your research prior to the question being asked? Unfortunately, budget is a large part of the hiring process, and many firms have set bands for roles. Anything above the set bands and it has to be signed off by Partners, and as a result, they may offer the role to someone who has requested a salary within the framework.

This basic salary comparison tool from Total Jobs may be helpful for you to garner the benchmark for your role and area, or speaking with peers could be really insightful into what salary you should be requesting.

You stumbled in the interview

A regrettable event, but it happens to the best of us. Maybe your mind went blank, or you answered the wrong questions – whatever happened, you can certainly learn from it and moving forward you know your weaker points to tackle in your prep. If you feel you need to overcome nerves, there’s a great guide by Big Interview on how to scupper your nerves and present your best self.

You weren’t as well presented as you could have been

First impressions are everything, from what the hiring manager sees of you waiting in the lobby to how you come across to the receptionist as you leave. If you have done your research, or indeed your recruitment agency is worth their salt, you should have a good idea before arriving what the firm expects from potential employees – the dress code, performance and style of current employees, and the brand style of the firm should all give you an insight on how to present yourself. If you feel you didn’t fit the firm, for future interviews it’s definitely worth researching.

They hired internally

Not as common as people may think, but sometimes we do hear that the firm loved the candidate, the Partners felt they would be a great fit, their salary expectations were fair and their experience exactly what they wanted – but they’ve decided to go with someone internal. A frustrating experience for you and for us, and not much advice to give on this, as essentially the job was yours. However, you can take the experience and use the feedback to boost your confidence for your next interview, knowing that you have all the skills you need to succeed.

If you’re looking for a new role, get in touch with our team to discuss how we can help you, from CV formatting through to interview prep.