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Five Reasons You Were Rejected For The Job You Thought You Had

You thought you had the job nailed. The interview went well--the interviewer seemed to like you and your skills were a perfect fit. They even seemed to be on the verge of offering you the job on the spot. But your agency tells you the next day you didnít get the job or contract. What happened? It came as a big shock, didnít it?

Losing a job or contract you thought you had is a real blow to your self-esteem. All sorts of reasons start to race through your mind. Was your agency up to something? Did one of your references put in a bad word for you? You just canít believe it or understand it.

Having been on both sides of this situation, here are some of the reasons that it might have happened:

1. Better Candidate

By far the most likely thing to have happened is that somebody walked in later that afternoon, or the next morning, for an interview who was a better fit perfect for the position than you. As an employer it used to happen to me fairly regularly that I would interview someone I felt happy with and would have been glad to take on. But then somebody else would come along later who was exactly who we wanted, even more so than the previous candidate.

2. Agency Hocus Pocus

Although reason number one is by far the most likely, there is the possibility that the agent sent two candidates along for a contract position, and the client likes both of you. In that situation the agent may steer the client towards the candidate the agency can make the most money from.

3. Someone Recognized You

Itís always possible that someone you worked with previously recognized you as you walked in for the interview. Maybe they knew you got into trouble at the other place, thought you were incompetent, or just plain didn't like you. And they passed that information on after you left the building.

Thereís also the possibility that person is protecting himself or herself. Maybe they were sacked from the previous company and didn't want someone knowing that starting at his or her new place of employment. I once lost a job I thought was a sure thing. I found out later I lost out because of a bad recommendation from someone I'd worked with previously. The guy had been escorted off the premises by the security guards where I worked with him before.

4. Jumped the Gun

It happens fairly regularly that Project Managers interview for positions they haven't received a budget for yet. It was only wishful thinking on their part. They either never get budget permission or they have to wait longer than expected, by which time you're already at a different job. If you were interviewing for a contract position, perhaps HR was still hoping to hire a permanent employee and didnít want to commit to a contractor.

5. Bad Reference

Thereís also the possibility that the company got a bad reference on you. This could have come from your previous employer, client or even a co-worker.

Hiring agents have told me that often the best sources to ask will be other contractors or co-workers. They may have somebody at a site where you used to work, and the agent will simply call them to ask what you were like. If you are unlucky they connected with someone with whom you didnít get along.

However, by far the most likely occurrence, in my experience, is that someone else came along for an interview after you did that the company simply liked better. This is what happens in 9 cases out of 10, and possibly 99 cases out of 100.

Where do you go from here? If you lost out to someone else, you could try to find out what distinguished that person from you. It may mean you getting more training in job skills to match or exceed that other candidate. If you had equal skills and experience, maybe that other person presented himself or herself better. You might consider getting interview training so you donít lose jobs again.

Submitted by:

Gerry McLaughlin

Gerry McLaughlin has fulfilled every role in Software Development from Trainee Programmer through Systems and Business Analysis, Project Leader and Manager, Systems Manager and ChiefInformation Officer with a department of 80 people. Tens of thousands of IT Contractors visit http://www.ITContractor.com each month to keep themselves in touch with the market.Gerry McLaughlin has fulfilled every role in Software Development from Trainee Programmer through Systems and Business Analysis, Project Leader and Manager, Systems Manager and ChiefInformation Officer with a department of 80 people. Tens of thousands of IT Contractors visithttp://www.ITContractor.com each month to keep themselves in touch with the market.




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