Declining a job offer may feel discourteous, however, sometimes the position may not be the right fit -and that’s ok. How can you ensure you’re turning down a job offer respectfully, and politely? Here are some tips.

Avoid Procrastinating

Once you have decided you are going to turn down a position, you should do so within a reasonable amount of time. By being timely, you are not only displaying your professionalism, but you are also showing you are conscious of their time. This speaks volumes to companies because in doing so, they will be able to move forward more quickly in their hiring process.

Express your Gratitude

From interviews to meetings, to various lines of communication, the entire process can be extremely time-consuming. When declining an offer, be sure to thank the hiring manager and anyone else you connected with for the time they allotted to working with you.

Explain Your Reasoning

Here are some reasons you may decline an offer:

When a job isn’t the right fit, when the company isn’t the right fit, when the salary doesn’t meet your expectations, or when you have accepted another offer. Here are some email templates for inspiration.

Clarify why you are turning down the position and be straightforward with your response. You can provide reasoning as to why you are declining, but leave out specific details. Simply express that after careful consideration, you’ve decided the role isn’t the right fit for you at this stage of your career. Keep it short and simple.

Decipher That You Are Declining the Position

When you do decide to turn down a position, ensure that you are making it clear you are not accepting the job. Avoid giving a response that may be misleading.

Consider Keeping in Contact

Lastly, end the conversation by leaving it open-ended. Suggesting to keep in contact will help keep the door open if something were to arise on either end in the future. Remember, declining a job offer doesn’t equate to burning a bridge.



10 Free Business Productivity Resources Everyone Needs

Guide to Changing Careers & Starting a New Job (Checklist Included!)

Secrets to a Stellar Performance Review