A Decline Offer Letter lets you politely refuse a job offer and explain your rejection. With this document, you can maintain a good relationship with a company you may work with.
At the same time, you provide actionable details that can help the company improve its recruiting and hiring processes.
With a fillable template, you can advise why you rejected the offer without providing unnecessary information or using language that could alienate the recipient.
When to Use a Decline Offer Letter
Choosing the right job can be challenging, and you may be tempted to not respond to an employment offer letter you don’t wish to accept.
However, you can only benefit from communicating your reasons for declining. A quality letter can support your professional reputation and lead to essential career connections.
You may use a decline offer letter to reject a job offer for many reasons, including:
- The role/company isn’t the right fit.
- The job doesn’t pay enough.
- You’ve accepted another job offer.
- The schedule or location doesn’t align with your preferences.
- You’ve decided to stay at your current job.
- The offer doesn’t help you achieve your career goals.
By providing a brief explanation to support your decision, you show the employer that you respect their time and appreciate the offer. Depending on the field you work in, a good reputation can help you ensure positive relations with an organization that may be your partner or client in the future.
A polite decline also leaves the door open for future positions with the company that may be more suited to your personal needs and career aspirations.
Sometimes, a decline offer letter may prompt the employer to address your concerns and reissue the offer with better terms. For example, if you decline because the job does not meet your salary requirements, the company may offer higher pay or additional benefits.
What to Include in a Decline Offer: Letter
Your decline offer letter should include the following:
- Candidate name and address
- Employer or representative name and title
- Company name and address
- Personalized greeting
- Polite statement declining the offer
- Positive feedback about the company
- Reason for declining
- Expression of gratitude
- Referrals, if applicable
- Your name and signature
Keep the tone of your letter professional and straightforward, and avoid giving more detail than necessary.
A well-written job offer decline letter can help you maintain good relations with the company while providing them with important information they can use for future recruitment and hiring processes.
How To Politely Decline a Job Offer
When declining a job offer, it is crucial to remember that the organization spent time and effort to recruit and select you for the position.
A decline job offer letter helps you effectively communicate your decision while acknowledging their efforts. Take the following steps to decline a job offer politely.
Step 1: Show Appreciation and Gratitude For the Job Offer
Fully express your appreciation for their time and effort. If possible, indicate things you liked about the company, division, hiring process, or position. You may say that the decision was difficult and applauded the recruiter’s professionalism or the company’s vision.
Express gratitude to the team that worked with you to reach this point. Please indicate that you know they spent much time and effort on the interview and selection process.
Assertively state that you appreciate their understanding and respect for your decision and hope it does not cause them significant inconvenience.
Step 2: Briefly Explain Your Reason for Declining
Advise of your reason for declining the position. Be clear and concise. Make it clear that you decided after careful reflection. For example, you may advise declining the offer after careful consideration because you are pursuing an opportunity more aligned with your long-term goals.
Keep your feedback positive and clarify that your decision to decline the position is based on your needs and preferences. Do not make accusatory or inflammatory remarks or speak negatively of the company or its employees.
Avoid giving personal details or information not about your professional career. Even if your reasons are personal, keep to simple, straightforward facts that do not cast the company in a negative light.
Step 3: Respond promptly
When a company tenders a job offer, they may have been searching for someone to fill it for months. They may not have someone to handle the workload they hoped you would take on.
Respect their time and needs by responding promptly to the job offer. This allows them to reach out sooner to other candidates willing to accept the position.
Step 4: Keep the Door Open and Offer To Stay in Touch
Indicate in your letter and any verbal communication about the job offer that you respect and appreciate the company and the hiring team. Let them know that you hold them in high regard and hope to cross paths with them in the future.
If appropriate, let them know you are happy to stay in touch. You can do this through social media, professional online platforms, or email. A periodic message or email to chat can keep you at the forefront of the hiring team’s thoughts.
If future positions more aligned with your needs arise, they may be more likely to contact you.
Step 5: Offer Referrals, If You Have Any
You may consider suggesting a professional connection or colleague as a show of good faith. This is especially helpful for specialized roles where qualified candidates are hard to find.
By referring someone for the position, you show the hiring team that you have confidence in the company and appreciate them.
A successful referral can also help you maintain a good relationship with the company in case you must work with them in the future. Depending on your industry, such connections can provide beneficial relationships between companies that can further your professional career goals.
Decline Offer Letter Sample
Use this decline job offer template, downloadable in PDF and Word formats, to create a personalized job offer response.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you maintain a good relationship with a company after you reject an offer?
To maintain a good relationship with a company after you reject an offer, keep your communication professional and positive. Be honest, sincere, and gracious when communicating your rejection.
Show appreciation for the hiring team’s time and effort and offer to stay in touch through professional online platforms and social media.
Be sure to send follow-up emails or messages to stay in touch even after moving on to another position.
How do you decline an offer after initially accepting it?
To decline an offer after initially accepting it, write a polite letter similar to the decline job offer letter. Thank them for offering the position and advising that you regretfully retract your acceptance. Clearly state your reasons for declining the offer while maintaining professional decorum.
Reasons you may choose to decline an offer after initially accepting it include:
- Injury, illness, or death in the family.
- Accepted a better job offer.
- Pay is insufficient for your needs.
- Work location is too far.
- Company culture is inconsistent with your needs or values.
If you know someone else who would be a good fit for the position, consider providing a professional referral.
Can I lose a job offer if I try to negotiate employment terms?
You could lose a job offer if you use unprofessional methods, but many companies expect salary negotiations during the hiring process. Whether discussing salary, benefits, or working conditions, the key to successful negotiation during the hiring process is remaining professional, polite, and appreciative of the people you work with.
Keep the company culture and position requirements in mind to avoid making unreasonable requests that could alienate the hiring team.
How do I negotiate a higher salary after a job offer?
To negotiate a desirable salary, establish a target salary and be assertive about your goals. Research to ensure your salary requirements are reasonable for the position and industry. Expect to compromise during negotiations, and always handle the discussions graciously and respectfully.
If a higher salary is not an option, consider asking for additional benefits or more paid time off to compensate for the difference. Remember that salary negotiation is a conversation that aims to benefit both you and the company.
Approach negotiations as a team effort rather than a debate.
If you decide to reject an employment offer for any reason, you will benefit from using this job offer decline letter template.