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A company I applied to gave me an invite for a final interview. However, I just received an email stating that they've already picked a candidate and that I won't be invited for the final interview (which I have yet to attend) and my application is rejected.

Now you can probably understand my frustration as I was really excited for this interview (even informed a few friends/family).

Doesn't this show a complete lack of professionalism from their side?

How do I respond to this? I don't want to burn bridges, but I also want to let them know that I'm not happy about this.

  • Do you want to let them know that you're not happy about this or do you want to not burn bridges, because those things are at odds. They almost certainly already know that you're frustrated about this, because who wouldn't be. – Dukeling Oct 25 '17 at 20:35
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    Yeah you're right guys, I think I just need to calm down. – Andy_Jones Oct 25 '17 at 20:38
  • Be happy that they informed you at all, as opposed to not scheduling the final interview at all and then never telling you that you had been dropped from consideration. – alroc Oct 26 '17 at 15:43
  • That's how recruitment is done. You interview a number of people. You do the interviews serially because you can't do all the interviews at once. You make an offer when you find a good candidate. And you stop the interviewing process once that candidate has accepted your offer and has actually signed that contract with you (because many times, qualified candidates get multiple offers, so an offer given is rarely a slam dunk). If you can think of a better system that could work better than this, please I'm all ears. – Stephan Branczyk Oct 27 '17 at 4:21
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Now you can probably understand my frustration as I was really excited for this interview (even informed a few friends/family).

I can only assume that this is the first time this has happened to you. I know multiple people who are at the top of their careers to whom this has happened a dozen times in a year. This is perfectly normal. The job market is extremely competitive, and some industries have more qualified applicants than positions available by far.

Yes, it is deeply frustrating. Get used to it, because it's going to happen to you a whole lot more times.

Doesn't this show a complete lack of professionalism from their side?

Absolutely not even slightly.

How do I respond to this? I don't want to burn bridges, but I also want to let them know that I'm not happy about this.

They have a problem that needs solving. They thought you might be the person to solve it. Then they found someone else to solve it. That's all they care about: that they get their problems solved. Your feelings are, how shall I put this, completely irrelevant to them. So if you want to express unhappiness and not burn bridges then always keep the company's interests in mind. The thing you say is:

  • Thank you for considering me.
  • I had a great time interviewing.
  • I am glad that you found a good candidate, but disappointed to not have the opportunity to work with you this time.
  • I am very enthusiastic about finding another opportunity where we can work together.
  • Please keep me in mind if another position comes open.

The bit where you express unhappiness is "I'm disappointed to not have the opportunity to work with you this time", in case that was unclear.

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    To me, this is the correct answer. You could improve it on why this was not unprofessional. They found their match. Continuing the the interview process would have been a waste of Company's and OP´s time and money. The professional thing to do is to tell your business-partners right away, when an opportunity is no longer on the table so he can stop "investing" in it - whats exactly what they did. OP should thank them. It was also in his best interest. – Daniel Oct 26 '17 at 9:05
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How do I respond to this?

I suggest you just move on. Look for other jobs you like.

I doubt it was unprofessional, but that is less important than what you should do next, and that I suppose is to continue job hunting.

It's not worth it to vent out on them.

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As a manager who has had interview and hiring authority for several companies, I can add a little insight. There have been times where I liked several candidates, and had scheduled one or two of them for follow up interviews, but then extraneous circumstances intervened and I wasn't able to hire them.

For instance, the last company I worked for lost a contract in the middle of a hiring phase for me. I needed to add a couple new people to my workforce and I had already interviewed all candidates, had made a short list of the people I liked and was planning on calling them back for another interview.

However, the regional manager for the company informed me that I several employees from the closed branch had shown a willingness to relocate to our office and that we should accommodate them.

That was that. I sent rejection notifications to ALL of the candidates and picked the two best employees from our closed branch to transfer to mine. I didn't tell the candidates why, nor do I really have to.

In other words, a dozen things could be going on behind the scenes that you have no idea about. It's not optimal for you, but it's time to take it gracefully and move on.

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There isn't any good way for you to complain to them about their behavior and still keep a good relationship. Best thing you can do is tell them that you appreciate their time and that if they have any other positions that you would be a good fit for, to keep you in mind.

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Rejection letter kind of closing the issue of the position for you But, in case you really want to respond to that, try sending the question regarding the interview scheduled in light of the latest development. You can state your feeling in the communication.

Perhaps you will find out that its miscommunication between departments and your interview is on track.

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