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Sometimes I apply to jobs, and sometimes I get rejected. I've noticed a few times that a rejection e-mail (from staff at the company) may include a line like:

I'd like to stay in touch as we continue to create new opportunities here at Evil Goose Corporation. Would you be open to reconnecting in a few months if you are on the market at that time?

What, if anything, does this mean? Are they inviting me to re-apply for a similar or different role a few months further down the line? Is this phrase simply a detail of etiquette/politeness?

  • The email does not invite you do reapply, they ask you whether they may call you. I would just answer them in a one-liner: "Feel free to give me a call when you have an opportunity that may fit to my profile." But I wouldn't expect them to call me at all. – Alexander Dec 6 '15 at 13:04
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With these kinds of responses, what they mean depends on how impersonal the response is and how far along you got in the hiring process.

If they didn't even an interview you and it looks like a generic form letter rejection, it's just a pleasantry and doesn't mean anything. Some companies might reach out again if they have a position matching your profile, some might not.

However, the more personalised the response is and the further you got in the hiring process (think multiple interviews), the more genuine this is. At that point, you've already impressed the interviewers with your experience, profile or cultural fit. Just because they had a better candidate or didn't think you a perfect match for the position they were hiring for, doesn't mean that they wouldn't like to hire you in another position if one opens up. They've identified you as a good potential hire so it's in their own interests to talk to you again if a position opens up for someone with your profile. Take this as the compliment that it is and reply that you're always open to talking about positions that match your skills and interests.

5

Is this phrase simply a detail of etiquette/politeness?

Yes, it is simply for appearing polite and make the rejection seem less hurting.

When it comes to re-applying policy, some companies wouldn't accept applications from candidates who had been recently rejected. Generally, it is around 6 months, but it is upto the company and their recruitment policies and practices.

  • 1
    I agree, it's just a palliative as far as I've experienced or heard about it – Kilisi Dec 6 '15 at 12:07
  • I think it depends on where in the process you got rejected. If you were rejected by HR before you came in person, then go ahead and apply. If you're applying after being rejected from a interview, then I would be hesitant as it could just be a form letter they send out to everyone just to be nice. – Dan Dec 7 '15 at 15:31
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I would say to some extent it depends on the size of the company. A smaller one has a limited number of positions and must pick the best applicant. A larger company can hire people for many positions and will pick canidates of a certain caliber. can't hurt to respond yes though.

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The best possible meaning would be this: You applied, you were interviewed, they thought you were excellent for the job, and someone even better appeared. The responsible manager might have said "if I had the budget for two new employees, I would have hired them both".

I would interpret this as "we believe that you were good enough to be hired, but at this point we found someone even better. We would gladly consider you if we have more job openings".

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