How to Ask for Feedback After an Interview (+ Examples)
So you didn’t get the job…. and you want to know why. Rather than make the same mistakes in your next interview, you’ve decided to ask the hiring manager for feedback so you can improve.
This is an admirable notion – but there’s a fine line between being ambitious vs being an annoyance. In this article we’ll show you how to ask for feedback from your interviewer in a way that elevates you as a professional and (if you’re lucky) may even get you a second chance at winning the job.
Keep reading to the end to see an exact email script that you can use as a base.
Table of Contents
How to Ask for Interview Feedback
1. Use a Straightforward Subject Line
When a hiring manager scans their overflowing inbox, your subject line is their first impression of your email. So, make it count!
Keep it clear, concise, and devoid of any cryptic messages. For example, a subject line like “Interview feedback request” is straightforward and simple, leaving no room for confusion or guessing games.
Remember, a compelling subject line can be the golden ticket that makes hiring managers want to open and read your email. So, choose your words wisely.
2. Thank Your Interviewer for Their Time
Thanking your interviewer for their time shows that you’re not only professional but also appreciate the opportunity. It creates a positive impression and leaves the door open for future communication.
Think of it as planting the seed for a fruitful feedback conversation. Simple gestures like saying, “Thank you for taking the time to interview me. I appreciate your insights”, can make a big difference.
Being appreciative can pave the way for valuable feedback and unexpected opportunities. Plus, it’s just good manners, right?
3. Be Respectful
Much like gratitude, respect goes a long way.
Being respectful in your request for feedback shows that you value the hiring manager’s time and expertise. It sets a positive tone for the conversation and increases the likelihood of receiving valuable insights.
So, avoid any passive-aggressive vibes and opt for a polite and professional approach. For example, start your email with a friendly greeting like, “Dear [Interviewer’s Name]”, and maintain a courteous tone throughout.
Remember, a little respect can open doors to constructive feedback and who knows, maybe even a future opportunity. You just can’t go wrong!
4. Explain Why You’re Reaching Out
Explaining why you’re reaching out is not just smart, but also productive.
When you mention your motivation to continue pursuing job opportunities and your desire to be a strong candidate, it shows that you’re serious about your career. Let them know you’re not just fishing for compliments but genuinely eager to learn and grow.
So, don’t be shy about sharing your enthusiasm. For instance, you could say something like, “I’m genuinely passionate about this industry and eager to learn from every experience. Your feedback would be invaluable in helping me refine my skills and become an even stronger candidate.”
If you think about it, some eagerness never hurt anyone (except maybe the occasional overzealous high-five).
5. Ask What You Could Have Done Differently
Getting input on why a hiring manager went with another candidate helps you pinpoint the areas that need improvement — like getting insider information to level up your game.
For example, maybe you could’ve aced the dreaded “tell me about yourself” question with a more engaging story or a sprinkle of wit.
By asking for specific feedback, you can focus on honing those areas and learn how to prepare for an interview better.
6. Express Gratitude
Finishing your email with gratitude, much like starting it the same way, leaves a lasting impression because it shows your professionalism and appreciation for people’s efforts.
For instance, a simple “Thank you for considering me, and I appreciate any insights you can provide” goes a long way. By thanking the hiring manager, you leave the door open for future opportunities and build a positive reputation.
Asking for Feedback After an Interview: Email Examples
Email is the best option for requesting feedback after getting rejected for a job because it allows you to craft a thoughtful message and provides a paper trail for future reference.
We’ve written a sample email that makes asking for feedback after an interview simple and easy. Don’t forget to personalize it based on your own experience and adapt it to fit the hiring manager and company you’re writing to.
Example email 1
Subject: Request for Interview Feedback – Position at ABC Company
Hi [Hiring Manager’s Name],
You recently interviewed me for the [Job Title] position – I was the applicant who [something memorable that will remind them who you are] While I’m disappointed that I wasn’t selected, I greatly appreciate having had the chance to speak with you. With my job search continuing, I would really appreciate it if you could give me some feedback on my interview performance. If I made any mistakes, I’d love to know so I can correct them in future interviews. Or if you found my skills lacking in some way, it would be really helpful to know what areas to focus on. Even just a sentence or two could make all the difference in my career development.
Thank you once again for your time and consideration.
Wish you could connect with more amazing people, and not feel awkward in social situations? Download our FREE Ultimate Guide to Social Skills below.
Remember, your journey to getting valuable feedback doesn’t end here. Being able to follow through until the very end — even after you’ve hit SEND — is key to landing your dream job.
Need more expert guidance? Learn more about how to write an interview follow-up email with our in-depth guide.
Why Asking for Feedback Is Beneficial
1. Honing Your Interview Skills
Your interviewer has met with countless applicants, making them a valuable source of feedback on your soft skills and interview performance.
They can shed light on areas where you excelled and areas that may need improvement. In fact, they might even point out small habits like twirling your hair or avoiding eye contact that you weren’t aware of.
By asking and receiving specific feedback, you can learn from your mistakes and make adjustments to enhance your performance in future interviews. Remember, even the smallest tweaks can make a big difference in your next opportunity to shine.
Even better? Learning how to ask for interview feedback can give you ideas on exactly what questions to ask your interviewer the next time you apply for jobs.
2. Identifying Your Strengths
Asking for feedback after an interview is not just about identifying areas for improvement, but also about recognizing your strengths.
Maybe your storytelling ability captivated the interviewer, or perhaps your problem-solving skills impressed them.
By understanding your strengths, you can leverage them in future interviews and build on what sets you apart from the competition.
3. Gaining Insight on the Competition
Getting this information straight from the horse’s mouth is something you just can’t pass up!
Asking for feedback after an interview not only helps you improve yourself but also gives you a unique perspective on the competition. When you receive feedback, you might learn about the strengths and qualities that other candidates possessed, which made them stand out.
Armed with this knowledge, you can better understand what employers are looking for, fine-tune your approach, and gain a competitive edge in the long-term.
4. Discovering New Opportunities
Asking for feedback after a job rejection isn’t just about self-improvement; it can also open doors to new opportunities.
When you inquire about the reasons behind the decision, you might uncover insights that’ll lead you to discover alternative job roles or industries where your skills and strengths are better aligned. It’s like stumbling upon a hidden treasure map that guides you towards exciting prospects you hadn’t considered before.
So, don’t let a rejection discourage you — embrace it as a chance to explore uncharted territories and find your perfect fit.
5. Learning the Hiring Manager’s Priorities
Asking for feedback after a job rejection gives you a sneak peek into the hiring manager’s mind and helps you understand their priorities (read: crack the job search cheat codes).
By knowing what they were looking for in a candidate, you can fine-tune your future applications, tailor your skills and experiences to match their preferences, and get a strategic advantage that others may not.
Asking for feedback after a job rejection is not just about improving yourself — it’s also a smart networking move. Think of it as a golden opportunity to connect with professionals in your industry.
When you reach out to the hiring manager or recruiter, you’re opening a door to future conversations and potential connections. They’ve already seen your potential, and now you have a chance to leave a lasting impression.
So, grab that networking lifeline and turn a rejection into a connection. Who knows, your next opportunity might come from the very person who rejected you!
Want more insights on how to making meaningful connections with VIPs? Here are some incredible insights!
Interview Feedback FAQs
Who Should You Ask for Feedback?
When it comes to asking for feedback, go straight to the source.
Reach out to the hiring manager or recruiter who interviewed you. If you faced a panel of interviewers, don’t be shy — include them all in your email. Cast a wide net, gather valuable insights, and show them that you’re serious about self-improvement.
Plus, with multiple people providing feedback, you’ll get a well-rounded perspective — like assembling your very own feedback dream team!
When Should You Ask for Feedback?
Timing is everything. After receiving a job rejection, give yourself a moment to process, bounce back, and show resilience. Then, strike while the iron is hot.
Reach out to ask for feedback within a week or two. Don’t wait too long, or the details may fade like that questionable fashion trend from the ‘80s. Get fresh insights while they’re still crystal clear in everyone’s memory.
Can You Still Ask for Feedback If You Received a Job Offer?
Absolutely! Even if you’ve scored a shiny new job offer, it’s still worth asking for feedback from the hiring manager.
Think of it as the cherry on top of your success sundae. Not only will you gain valuable insights for personal growth, but it shows professionalism and a desire to continuously improve.
Plus, who knows? It might open the door for future opportunities.
Should You Follow Up on Your Feedback Request?
You bet! But do it with a little finesse.
Following up on your feedback request shows your dedication and enthusiasm. Think of it as a gentle nudge, like reminding your friend to return a borrowed book.
Keep it light-hearted and genuine. Who knows? Your follow-up could lead to more insights or even a future connection.