Accountancy Job Searching: How To Handle Interview Rejection

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Nobody likes rejection, particularly when it means you’re missing out on a crucial accountancy role. Unfortunately, the chances are you will encounter a few rejections on your path to the perfect job. After all, studies say it takes between 21 and 80 applications just to get one job offer. 

When you’ve invested your time and effort into planning your financial career, gaining the right accreditation and mastering your interview techniques, every rejection can feel like a major blow. 

However, missing out on a role doesn’t have to be the end of the world. Learning how to bounce back from the experience and learn from your mistakes will make you more likely to get a “yes” in the future.  

Here’s what you need to know about handling interview rejection. 


Revisit the Interview 



After receiving your rejection letter or phone call, you may feel disappointed and distressed, but it’s important to remember that every failure is an opportunity to learn. With this in mind, try to go back to the interview and walk through each step mentally.  

This will help you determine what you might need to work on going forward. Think about: 

  • How you approached each question: Did you have examples and scenarios to back up your statements and make you seem more credible? Did you stumble in answering any questions or fail to do adequate research into the company before the interview? 
  • Your demeanour: How did you come across? Either through a video interview or in-person, you should have been wearing a professional outfit, sitting up straight, and smiling at your interviewer. Did you often find yourself fiddling or getting distracted? 
  • The CV and cover letter: Did you make the right impression from day one with your CV and cover letter? Did you make claims on your CV you couldn’t back up in person? 

Ask for Feedback 

Mentally going over the interview can be a great way to find areas where you might have gone wrong. However, there’s a chance you won’t necessarily remember the conversation the same way as your interviewer. Getting direct feedback will give you a new perspective to work with. 

Respond to your interviewer and thank them for their time. In your email, include a small request for any feedback they might be able to provide on why you didn’t get the role. You may learn there were things you did wrong in the interview you didn’t know about, such as failing to portray the right personal brand 

You may also learn that the reason you didn’t get the job wasn’t entirely within your control. For instance, your hiring manager may just have met with another candidate they felt they clicked with a little better than you.  

Remember, when a hiring manager does give you feedback, don’t take it too personally. Thank them for their input and use the information constructively.  


Create an Action Plan 



Based on what you’ve learned from your overview of the interview and the feedback gathered from your interviewer, you can begin to plan for ways to fix things you can control.  

For instance, maybe you didn’t secure your preferred accountancy role because you didn’t have the accreditation your employer was looking for. Investing in additional training to become a certified accountant or something similar may be a great way to improve your chances of being hired. 

If you missed out on a role because someone else had a stronger connection with the executives in the company, this could be a sign it’s time to work on your networking skills. Who you know in the financial industry can be just as important as what you know. Other ways to strengthen your chances of positive results in the future include: 

  • Working on your interview skills: Practice interviewing in person and on video to ensure you’re making the right impression on hiring managers.  
  • Upgrading your personal brand: Invest in making yourself look more appealing to your potential bosses by upgrading your appearance online. 
  • Trying new interview techniques: Consider experimenting with strategies like competency-based interviews.  

Actively focusing on improving your chances of getting the job you want next time will help you to get over the pain of the initial rejection.  


Give Yourself Time to Heal, Then Bounce Back 

Rejection is going to hit hard if you’ve been applying for jobs really important to you and your future. You may not be able to bounce back the same day you get the rejection letter. It’s okay to give yourself a moment to grieve for the missed opportunity.  

However, try not to wallow for too long. The more time you spend feeling bad about a rejection, the more your confidence levels will begin to dwindle. It’s important to get back on the job hunt as quickly as possible, with a little professional support to help you.  

A professional recruitment company with expertise in the accounting and financial sectors can help put you in touch with the employers specifically in search of people with your skills and experience. This makes it easier to ensure you have a good chance of getting a role. 

Specialists can also give you extra guidance and support when it comes to improving your interviewing and job application techniques. With a little help from a recruitment agency, you can be back on the right track to success in no time. 


What’s Next? 

The right recruitment agency can significantly improve your chances of ending up with the job of your dreams. A good recruitment agency will guide you through the job application and interview process, as well as helping you to find the right opportunities for your accountancy skills.  

Discover the benefits of working with Rebus Recruitment today. Reach us via email or on 01282 930 930.  



Rachel Mitson 


About Rebus Financial Recruitment     

Rebus Financial Recruitment provides a specialist and focused recruitment service to its customers, which historically range from various organisations, including SMEs, to large PLCs.     

We strive to offer both the client and candidate a seamless recruitment experience. Using our expertise, we get to the heart of employer and employee needs, and, in doing so, we match the two perfectly. To find out more, get in contact with one of our team today, or you can call us on 01282 930930.  

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