How to Cancel a Job Interview

June 27, 2019

Life happens and sometimes you will schedule an interview and at the last minute something comes up and you won’t be able to attend.  Maybe your child caught a cold. Maybe a conflicting work meeting came up last minute. Or maybe your car broke down.  What do you do? 

When you know you won’t be able to attend an interview, it is important to let the interviewer know as soon as possible.  If possible, don’t wait until the last minute. You need to remember that the interviewer’s time is valuable and sometimes, there were a number of people who are adjusting their schedules to meet you.

Further, if you also want to stay on good terms with the employer in case you want to reschedule or if another job opens up with the company it’s better you notify them as early as possible.

You need to realize that cancelling an interview, despite having a valid reason, can leave a bad impression on your interviewer.  Therefore, when you need to cancel, you will want to pick up the phone and make a call to your interviewer to let them know that you will be unable to attend the interview.  Speaking with them over the phone allows you to explain why you cannot attend the interview and apologize for any inconvenience you have caused.  After you have that call, make sure to send a follow-up email so that everything is clear to everyone.

When you cancel, despite your reasoning, most interviewers will assume that you are cancelling because you are not interested in the position.  Therefore, if you want to reschedule, you need to let the interviewer know.  Saying something such as “Unfortunately, I can’t make this time due to unforeseen circumstances. Can we reschedule for a later date?” can work.  However, if you want to cancel, you should make absolutely clear that you’re canceling (as opposed to trying to switch dates and times). You can keep it short.

Don’t string the firm along.  Don’t cancel and leave them wondering.  Finally, as I mentioned before, remember to apologize!

Thanks for reading!  If you have any questions or would like to discuss further, feel free to email us or give us a call.

Happy Job Hunting and Good Luck!

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