On the Delivery of Bad News 

On the Delivery of Bad News 

April 01, 2024
Get tips and best practices from Develeap’s experts in your inbox

Did you ever receive bad news? Or did you deliver them to someone?

Let’s talk about the delivery of bad news.

Hey, I’m Lina. I’ve been working in hiring and HR at Develeap for three years. Among all the significant and fun work in the human resources world, there are also less pleasant parts and difficult challenges, such as rejection calls to candidates.

I am currently in the midst of a recruitment process for a DevOps position and a boot camp at develeap. Unfortunately, not everyone makes it to the next step. 

Sometimes, the rejection touches me on a personal level. Although I connected with people and had an excellent conversation over the phone/during the interview, professionally, it wasn’t enough. Such cases where my hands are tied in how much I can be flexible and move on with the candidate.

Why is it such a big deal to tell someone they didn’t get the job, especially over the phone?

At develeap, we think it’s really important to call every person who doesn’t move forward instead of just sending a basic email. It shows we respect their time and efforts and helps keep things positive for future opportunities. Also, it is important to maintain a positive relationship with potential candidates. It may be a better match in the future.

Another important thing is my professional standards and satisfaction—it is important for me to close the cycle with the candidate and to know that I gave them all the necessary information, feedback, and areas for improvement.

How to handle rejection conversations

So, for all the recruiters, here are some tips for handling these conversations:

1. Breathe deeply – Before such a conversation, you should arrive calm, take a breath, and be in a positive mood as much as possible.

2. Put yourself in the candidate’s shoes – Think about what they would like to hear. How would you react if you were rejected?

3. Know the candidate’s strengths – Always start with what went well in the candidate’s interview.

4. Offer help – Ask if you, as a recruiter, can help with their resumes, offer more jobs, etc.

4. Answer questions—Candidates will most often ask why, and would like feedback and to understand where they can improve.

5. Timing – Try not to make these calls late or before the weekend.

A word to anyone who didn’t get the job they wanted:

And a word to those candidates who were rejected for the job they really wanted – 

When faced with disappointment, try to stay as positive and optimistic as possible. I know it’s hard. Take a moment to acknowledge your feelings and allow yourself to process the news. After that, if you receive feedback from the employer, try to learn from it and figure out how to improve for the next interview. By the way, there are situations where it isn’t about you at all, and there was simply a lack of compatibility with the company. In the end, you will find the right place for you 🙂

In conclusion, this is definitely the least fun part of my job and can sometimes really affect my day. But it’s enough for one person to appreciate that I informed them in the conversation and will take something from it further; I did my part.

We’re Hiring!
Develeap is looking for talented DevOps engineers who want to make a difference in the world.