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How To Cancel A Job Interview Without Burning Bridges?

Canceling an interview is never easy. It would be best if you were highly mindful before doing it so that you do not end up offending your recruiters.

While applicants could have several reasons to cancel, they should also keep in mind that the recruiters go through much planning to arrange an interview. You could alienate your recruiters by canceling an interview without adequate notice.

Hence, if you must, make sure to cancel the interview so that the bridges are not burnt forever. Also, leave some scope to reconnect with your recruiters again in the future if you again reconsider working for the company.

Or, you could ask to reschedule the interview without canceling it entirely so that the employers do not feel that you have no interest at all.

It would be best if you were careful about not burning bridges with your recruiters because word travels fast in any industry. It is not worth it to miss opportunities for something as avoidable as this.

If you cancel, your interview is deemed unprofessional, and other recruiters might also form a poor impression of you.

Why Would You Want to Cancel an Interview?

Why Would You Want to Cancel an Interview?
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There can be many reasons to cancel an interview. However, if you think you can’t work your way around, it should be in the best interest to cancel an interview.

Here are some reasons.

1. You Have a Better Offer

You have a Better Offer
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After your resume was selected for the interview, you discovered that you were chosen by another company for which you had appeared for an interview a few weeks prior. Of course, you should take up the job if you have received a better job offer.

However, it would be best if you also informed your present recruiters that you would be unable to appear for their interview.

It is important to remain professional while stating your reasons for taking such actions and then thank them for the opportunity. You can also tell them you are open to working for them in the future in case such possibilities arise.

Also Read:- Reasons Why You’re Not Landing Job Interviews

2. You Don’t Think You are The Right Fit

You Don't Think You are The Right Fit
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You might want to cancel a job interview after realizing that you are probably the right fit. After going through the job description twice, maybe you felt you are not an appropriate fit.

However, subsequent research might have revealed that you might not be the right fit for the position and hence, would want to cancel the interview.

The right approach at this point would be to tell your employers so, but also mention that you are not averse to working for the company if they have some other role offering more practical skills.

3. You Want to Continue Studying

You Want to Continue Studying
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One of the reasons why you might want to cancel an interview is that you might want to continue studying. You could have changed your mind about following a particular career and wanting to return to school again.

You can tell your recruiters your reasons for doing so and tell them that once you have acquired your degree or certification, you would be interested in trying again. The hiring managers are sure to be impressed by your zeal for improvement.

4. Location is Too Far

Location is Too Far
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The commute is far for you to travel conveniently. You like this job, however locations seems to be a problem for you.

You could politely ask your recruiters to cancel the interview but also tell them that while the office location is too far, you would still be interested in the position if the company has some other offices nearer to where you stay or in your city.

That will show a practical reason for canceling the interview and that you are not disinterested in the position itself.

Asking to reschedule the interview or canceling with due notice and reasons show that you are professional and have not taken the opportunity for granted. It also shows that you are mindful of the process, allowing you to stay in touch with the recruiters.

5. Procedure for Canceling an Interview

Procedure for Canceling an Interview
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There is a way in which you should cancel the interview so that you do not offend anyone in the process of doing so. It will depend on the work culture, but this approach is more or less suited to everyone. Here is what you can do.

6. Advance Notice

Advance Notice
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Advance is a great term and it would be best if you put it to use while canceling or rescheduling your interview.

The sooner you do it, the better.

Canceling at the last moment makes your recruiters go through the entire schedule and rearrange everything. They might end up being disappointed with you in the process.

7. Send an Email

Send an Email
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Even if you have made a call to the office to cancel the interview, you should always send a proper email. Many people work in a team, and while you speak to one person, the message might not be communicated to others for some reason.

Emailing ensures that you have everything on record. In case of miscommunication, you can always show that you have done your bit from your end. Be specific while writing the subject of your email.

Make sure you include details like the date and time the interview was scheduled so that it is easy for your recruiters to identify the candidate.

8. Reason for Canceling

While sharing your reasons for canceling, make sure that you are brief. You don’t have to go into unnecessary details to explain what happened.

However, give enough details to show that you mean no disrespect to the organization and that you have valid reasons for canceling.

9. Always Talk of a Possibility

Always Talk of a Possibility
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You might cancel the interview now because you have a better job offer or other practical considerations. However, it is unpredictable of what the future holds for any of us.

Hence, it is essential that you talk about the possibility of working in the future in case a new position becomes available that is well-suited to your position.

Your recruiters have no obligation to continue with the hiring process. Although there is no harm in maintaining a cordial relationship.

Even if you decide to return to the company after several months or years, they might check the records and be reminded of your professionalism.

10. Watch Your Tone

Watch Your Tone
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While cancelling the interview over phone or email, you must be careful with your words and tone.

It should not be bragging if you cancel the interview for a better offer.

Additionally, if you are emailing, remember to be honest. The email will stay on record, so if you cite any reason and your recruiters find out about it later, it will create a negative impression.

Templates for Canceling Your Interview

Here are some templates for email canceling or rescheduling an interview. You can personalize them according to your situation.

Example 1

Subject: Interview Cancellation for (Your Name)

Respected Sir,
Thank you for allowing me to appear for an interview on the 2nd of November, 2021, for the position of Head of Sales. The interview was scheduled for 10:00 am. 
I regret to inform you that I cannot make it to the interview and will have to cancel it. I have accepted a job offer at another location closer to my hometown as I have to move closer to my family.

However, if I ever move back to New York and there is a position suitable for me at that point, I would be interested in working with your organization again.

I apologize for any inconvenience caused; I hope the doors of opportunities will remain open in the future.

Thank you
(Your name)

Example 2

Subject: Interview Cancellation for (Your Name)

Respected Madam,

I regret to inform you that I cannot attend the interview on 3rd October 2021 at 11:00 am for the Data Analyst position. I have decided not to go ahead with the application anymore, as I have gone back to school to complete an advanced course on data analytics to hone my skills further.

I cannot express how grateful I am to you for the opportunity to appear for the interview. However, I feel I could serve you or any other organization better once I have completed my course.

If there is still an opening for me at your organization after six months, I would love to take it up. I apologize for any inconvenience I may have caused.

Thank you
(Your name)

Example 3

Subject: Interview Cancellation for (Your Name)

Respected Sir,

I express my gratitude for allowing me to appear for an interview on the 4th of April, 2021, for the position of senior customer executive.
However, I could not attend the interview because I feel unsuitable for the role. I am more inclined toward handling sales and marketing queries for customers rather than providing them with technical support, which is what I think this position demands.

I would love to send in my application again. However, if any similar position opens up in the future, I would be very interested in returning to the organization for another interview. Please keep in touch and inform me if there is any development.

Thank you
(Your name)


It is essential to maintain close working relations and proper connections for the future.

You never know whom you may need in the future, so staying in touch with recruiters and hiring managers of different organizations is always a good idea.

Proper networking can help you immensely in the future, so it is crucial that you do not burn any bridges when you cancel an interview.

You can use professional networking sites like LinkedIn to do so. Even if you cancel an interview, you can keep in touch with them and check in on the company occasionally to see if there are any openings.