Glassdoor reported the average job openings attract 250 resumes but only two percent of applicants will be called for an interview. A CareerArc Candidate Experience Study found that the typical candidate spends about three to four hours preparing and submitting one job application, meanwhile the typical employer spends less than 15 minutes reviewing that application.
“Job rejection is likely going to happen at one point in your career and it could just be because the job was really competitive, or that there were better candidates for the position,” Career Development Career counselor and Applied Learning Specialist Morgan Pellerin said.
In the Forbes article, “Ten Reasons Qualified Job Applicants Get Rejected,” Liz Ryan writes that one of the reasons qualified candidates get rejected might be as simple as an entry-level resume screener couldn’t see the applicant’s qualifications on their resume or application.
“The best way to handle rejection would be to not burn any bridges with the company you applied for and to still show appreciation for the interview in case more opportunities come up in the future, so overall stay positive,” Pellerin said.
Pellerin said the average job search for a college graduate takes between six to 12 months before they find an entry level position.
“I take every rejection as a learning experience in terms of maybe my qualification or experience for a position that I really wanted to get,” PSUC junior accounting major Jacob Prescott said.
Pellerin explains some preventative measures one could take for the best chance at an offer.
“I strongly urge students to take advantage of doing mock interviews, have someone they trust look over their resume or cover letter,” Pellerin said. “Do research on the company you are applying for, look at Glassdoor, and maybe even do an informational interview [reaching out to someone who works at the company you are interested in and finding out more about the workplace culture etc.]”
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that among people age 25 and older with a bachelor’s degree or more education, the unemployment rate was 2.1 percent in April 2018.
“I got rejected from a summer job in Colorado that I really wanted even after I made it to the phone interview stage and was really bummed about it for a while,” PSUC business administration junior Kyle Lasher said.
There are different ways to handle getting turned down from a job from anger to growth.
“A great thing you could do following a rejection would be to follow up with your contact and ask what you could improve on to be a better applicant in the future because you have the experience, but you didn’t get what you were hoping for, so maybe you were lacking in some areas. It is best to try and find those weak areas and strengthen them for the next interview,” Pellerin said.
CareerBuilder states that 66 percent of job seekers said they would wait only two weeks for a callback after which they consider the job a lost cause and move on to other opportunities.
“I didn’t hear back for awhile, and when I called to find out what was going on, they said the position was filled, and I started overthinking everything I did in the interview and my resume like maybe it’s because I’m from NY, so I’m unreliable,” Lasher said.
Door of Clubs conducted an online survey of 517 students graduating with a bachelor’s degree in 2017 and concluded that over 67 percent of graduating college students have not accepted a full-time job that will start upon graduation.
“Rejection is a fact of life in the career world, and it is a good experience to grow and learn from because it forces you to examine yourself,” Pellerin said. “Take the rejection with grace because you don’t want to hurt your reputation for the future.”