I recently submitted an application to a company for a particular opening (software developer). I was promptly contacted by a recruiter at that company who is overseeing several openings. He set me up for an interview with one of their teams which is interested by my resume.

I had the interview with the team and it went well (they've scheduled me for a technical interview for later this week). However, I learned that the position they're interested in hiring me for isn't quite what I had originally applied for (Windows development instead of Linux).

I really like this company and will still mostly likely take the job if they offer it to me. However, I'm thinking of e-mailing the recruiter and asking him if there are any positions I could interview for which better suit my interests. The rub is I don't want to give him the idea that I'm shying away from the current opening.

What's the best way to phrase my question?

  • Are you certain there are openings on Linux development?
    – DarkCygnus
    Commented Jan 11, 2022 at 22:30
  • Perhaps I misread one of the opening descriptions but I thought there were. Commented Jan 11, 2022 at 22:31
  • 1
    I suggest you read again. If there are not, asking this will not make sense.
    – DarkCygnus
    Commented Jan 11, 2022 at 22:52
  • I double-checked. There are some positions. Commented Jan 11, 2022 at 22:56

1 Answer 1


Emphasize the positive-- you really like the company-- and de-emphasize the fact that the current position isn't a perfect fit. I'd send an email something like this

Mr./Mrs. Recruiter-

I've really enjoyed getting to know the Foo Team and I'm looking forward to my upcoming interview. During this process, I have come to learn a lot about Company Name and have found myself very interested in its mission/ ethics/ technology/ whatever.

I notice on your web site that you have several other open positions that I think I would be a fit for- List of Positions. Would it be possible to put me forward for these opportunities as well in case the Foo Team position doesn't work out?


Your Name

It's certainly possible to wordsmith the language to indicate your relative preference for one role over another. But I strongly doubt that it would matter much. The recruiter is going to spend far less time and effort parsing the language you use than you're going to use writing it. Recruiters find people to fill openings-- they are very unlikely to care much whether you fill a Windows developer opening or a Linux developer opening. They know that there are many applicants for every position so even if you're a great fit you might lose out to someone just slightly more perfect.

It's conceivable that the company would come back and ask you about your preference just so they don't end up bidding against themselves but most companies are pretty accustomed to handling cases where an applicant applies to a couple of openings and two different teams want to make an offer. If the recruiter does ask about which opportunities most interest you, I'd be a little careful about saying that you prefer the Linux position until you've had at least an initial interview with that team-- there may be differences other than technology stack between the teams that you're not aware of. But I wouldn't worry too much about crossing that unlikely bridge unless and until you're asked to.

  • 2
    "... in case the Foo Team position doesn't work out?" Maybe I'm being pedantic but I'm not 100% sure about this wording. If you're not a fit for that one time, then you might not be a fit for other teams. If the one team rejects you for, say, cultural fit, then so will the others. If they reject you for things that can be improved with experience/knowledge/practice, then you might have a chance.
    – zmike
    Commented Jan 12, 2022 at 6:51
  • in some companies, teams can have very different cultures. So you might not fit in one, but fit in another. But I think OP prefers the other positions to the one he interviewed for, soe that phrasing might be a bit weak. Maybe something along the lines of: I saw positions X, Y and Z on your website, for which I consider myself qualified. I'd be happy to discuss those to see where I would fit best into your company.
    – Benjamin
    Commented Jan 12, 2022 at 9:31
  • I think this answer is a good suggestion if the company and the OP are both most interested in filling the same role ("I think I'd be a good fit as a Windows guy, but if it doesn't pan out I also know Linux & see your looking"). But I feel the wording needs changing slightly for this scenario where (I think) the OP wants to say "actually, my first pref is the other role, but if that doesn't pan out, I want to keep my options open on this application". Commented Jan 12, 2022 at 9:51

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