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What to Do When You Don’t Get the Job

Published: July 20, 2015 | Updated: October 12, 2020

You rocked the interview –or so you thought. But then you didn’t get the job. What did you do wrong and what do you do now? Learn what to do when you don't get a job.

1. Do Not Get Discouraged After You Don't Get a Job

Maybe you had a bad day. Or maybe it was the hiring manager’s bad day that got in your way. What you don’t want to do is spend hours second-guessing your abilities. What you do want to do is move on from here and plan for your next opportunity.

2. Assess Your Job Interview Performance

Before you take a step forward, think back. What did you do right—and wrong—when you were trying to land that last job? Immediately after the interview, take a few minutes to jot down what you think you nailed and where you felt you may have stumbled. Did you make a great impression during the interview? The more honest you are about how you performed in the last interview, the better prepared you’ll be for the next.

3. Follow Up with the Job Interviewer

You should always follow up after an interview with a quick thank you, but did you know that follow-up is just as important when you don’t get the job? Thank them for their time and ask for feedback. Maybe you were a finalist and the other job candidate was actually more qualified or had more experience. It happens. But if that other person doesn’t work out on the job or at the company, don’t you want to be next in line?

4. Stay Connected to the Interviewer and Company

The job application process can be long and hard. You might have to meet with several members of a company before they make their decision. Remember everyone you meet and get connected via email or LinkedIn. Even if you don’t get hired you can make a good impression and start to build the network of your career.

5. Prepare for Your Next Job Interview

Research job postings and keep up with industry news. Do you want a job in healthcare? Then make certain to understand what’s happening in healthcare that might help or hurt your chances for employment. Take time every day to do something on the job front whether it’s tweaking your resume, sending out a cover letter or reading information about your career path.


If you want a great career, start with great career training. At Charter College, we have career-focused programs in business, healthcare, hospitality, information technology, veterinary, and the trades. We’ll help you attain the skills you need to pursue your dream career. Then our career services professionals will give you advice and assistance on how to hone your skills and get the job.