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I applied with them months before I had a job. They just got back to me now and I never thought they would actually give me a job offer. Thing is I've already have a job for 3 weeks and I dont want to quit yet. But I'm interested in working for them maybe next year when the pandemic is over. Cause I don't want to keep this job I'm on when it's not work from home anymore.

How do I tell them that I can't accept their job offer for now, but I'd love to do it in the future?

  • I was serous when i applied because that was months ago when i didnt have a job. I just went on the interview hoping they would give a crazy good offer but its not that good for me to just quit. Would you ever hire me again if ever i contact you if theres a role open in the future? – user45100 Aug 17 '20 at 13:09
  • It would depend on the circumstances and just how good of a candidate I thought you were. You probably re-enter my interview pipeline, and you could expect to be questioned heavily on your seriousness about taking the position and the reasons for turning it down previously. – Joel Etherton Aug 17 '20 at 13:19
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    Another aspect of this is the timeline between when you entered their pipeline and they presented you the offer. You indicated "months". Unless this is a high level executive position (doubtful), "months" is entirely too long to be in the pipeline. This is feedback they could use. It probably won't change a future offer, but it would be information for them and remove any credibility questions. – Joel Etherton Aug 17 '20 at 13:37
  • THe few months i mentioned is when i submitted my application. They contacted me for the first interview, i already got a job. I shouldnt have entertained them there but i wanted to see what theyll be offering me so i could switch to them – user45100 Aug 17 '20 at 14:14
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Be straightforward. Everyone has their reasons.

Reply thanking for the offer, and mention that you cannot accept the offer right now due to personal reasons. However, you'll be interested in working with them in future. Do not mention anything like "never thought they would actually give me a job offer" or "it was a trial" - that'll most likely put you on their blocklist for future.

And next time, please go job hunting only when you mean it. Do not waste time (and effort) of others.


%%----- After the edit-----%%

If they got back to you late and in the meantime you had to accept another offer, that's perfectly OK.

Respond to them saying something like

Good to hear back from you. I'm sorry to inform that in the meantime I have opted for another offer and continuing with that. In present circumstances, it's not possible for me to accept you offer, but in future if I change my mind, I'll get in touch.

Then, think twice next time before applying: What if that delay was not the one occurrence and what happens if you join? The point that you did not have an ETA for response (and lack of follow up) shows two things

  • There's no commitment
  • Lack of proper communication

either of which can be a red flag to either organisation or for you. Make you decision wisely.

  • I applied to this job way before I had a job so im definitely not job hunting currently. I dont just want to say that i want to work with them in the future cause its a default answer. Like i really wanna express that i want to actually work with them. Should i state my reason or come up with something else? – user45100 Aug 17 '20 at 13:04
  • OK, you may need to actually add that info into the question then. If they become late in offering you the job, then that's it. How long they took to get back to you? – Sourav Ghosh Aug 17 '20 at 13:05
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    Like i really wanna express that i want to actually work with them. yes, you certainly do, otherwise why would you have applied in the first place? No need to express anything like that, it's a need from both the sides and works only when both parties are happy with the arrangement. – Sourav Ghosh Aug 17 '20 at 13:08
  • Okay actually, when they got back to my application, i already had the job and i continued on with the interview while having a job. I know thats wrong but i was hoping they would give me a better offer so i would easily quit here – user45100 Aug 17 '20 at 13:57
  • @user45100 So, the offer they are offering are not good for you? Then you should say so. If they want to negotiate and make changes to their offer, will you be ready / in a position to accept now? Or, it's more like you cannot accept, not like do not like to ? – Sourav Ghosh Aug 17 '20 at 14:00
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How do I tell them ...

That is very simple. Just write an e-mail and tell them whatever you need to tell. Just be polite and respectful.

WARNING: this will not at all guarantee that they will wait 6 months for you to make a decision.


You probably wanted to ask something like:

How do I negotiate to start a job not now, but after 6 months?

That is already another thing. You do not ask a question, but you need to start a negotiation. Be ready to have answers and arguments for everything that you say and for everything that you might be asked. However, 6 months delay without a very strong argument is unlikely to happen.


Considering that you accepted another job while this company was still deciding, you might just tell them that you need to turn down their offer because of the new job, but you really want to work for them in the future. Be ready to tell them when they should contact you again for another job in their company.

Dear Company,

Thank you for the job you offer me. Unfortunately, I already accepted another job at another company. For personal reasons, I want to keep the current job for at least 6 months.

I will contact you when I will decide to move ahead. You may also contact me for another job, after at least 6 months.

Thank you for your kind understanding.

(Obviously, you need to replace the "6 months" with whatever suits you; I only provided a guiding example.)

  • Should i tell them when they should contact me again? Would that hint them that im already planning on leaving my current job? Implying that i dont stay on jobs for long? – user45100 Aug 17 '20 at 13:11
  • I already made an update to the answer. – virolino Aug 17 '20 at 13:13
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From reading between the lines I get the idea that the job you are offered now is far better (financial, stability, growth-possibilities etc) than the one you currently have. So why not just take it ? It's good to have some loyalty to your (current) employer and not change on a whim. However you can't be expected to let a chance on a good career/future slip away out of loyalty for your (dead-end) current job, which you plan on quitting soon anyway.

  • I mean the new job doesnt pay as much compared to this new job. But the thing is, i prefer the job on the new one but its something totally new to me though so it could end really badly too. – user45100 Aug 17 '20 at 16:32
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They won't be impressed that you don't want to work for them because you have a better work-from-home offer. They will expect that if you applied and said your notice was 1 month then you can start in 1 month.

If you really want to try delaying you can tell them that due to personal circumstances you can't start until next year, but it's unlikely they will be willing to wait that long unless you are exceptional.

  • I'd say they think Im good. Like they sent me an offer without me even doing the exam yet. But yeah no ones gonna wait for a year for just one guy. im just thinking of a way to say that i genuinely wanna work with them in the future – user45100 Aug 17 '20 at 13:05
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Well, you can say:

I can't accept your job offer for now, but I'd love to do it in the future.

But don't expect them to hold a place open for you unless there's a very good reason. Honestly it's pretty transparent that you're window-shopping (no pun intended) so this employer may not look on that favourably.

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