Interview feedback can be a valuable asset to your job search.

Nobody likes to be confronted with the news that their job application has been unsuccessful. As well as feeling disappointed, chances are that you may start to question what you did wrong and if you will ever get a job.

While these feelings are all perfectly normal, it’s important not to let them get you down. A great way to overcome obstacles that seem to present themselves again and again and improve your confidence, is to ask your interviewer for some feedback.

Why is interview feedback important?

If your confidence has been knocked by rejection, asking for feedback can prove far more useful than you might think. Far from being another blow, it will actually enable you to learn from your mistakes and adapt your interview technique accordingly. 

When weighing up whether or not you want to know why you didn’t get the job, ask yourself a few questions. Did you genuinely want the job? Were you a suitable candidate? Did you feel you gave a good interview? If you can answer yes to these then it is well worth asking for feedback because understandably you’re probably confused. If you knew from the minute you walked into the interview that it wasn’t for you however, spend your time preparing for your next interview instead. 

How to ask for feedback

Asking someone why they didn’t want you can feel embarrassing. Additionally, it also needs to be done in a way that lets the recruiter know that while you’re disappointed, you’re not bitter. Remember, you may want to work with them again in the future and they’re more likely to remember you if you handle the situation professionally. 

When asking for feedback, thank your recruiter or the company directly for their time and help, express your disappointment that you weren’t selected for the role and mention that you would be very appreciative if they could provide some honest feedback as you would be interested in working with them in the future.

Not only can this prove to be invaluable for other interviews, if you ever get another meeting with this company again, you’ll know exactly what they’re looking for.

How to handle the feedback

When someone is giving you feedback, it’s important to listen more than you’re talking. It can be hard to hear someone’s assumptions about you, especially if you know you were just nervous or having an off day but don’t get defensive. 

A good question to ask is how you compared to the candidate who was successful - this will give you a better understanding of what companies are looking for.

A nice way to finish off the conversation is to ask if there’s anything you can do to improve your chances should you get an interview with them in the future. Remember, this feedback will be far more useful if you take it constructively rather than personally. 

If you would like any advice about perfecting your interview technique, please feel free to contact Alpha and we will be more than happy to help.