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Can you ask for feedback after an interview?

It is important that you continue to develop your personal development by asking for feedback after unsuccessful job interviews. It will help you on the path to your dream job!

Can you ask for feedback after an interview?

Job hunting can feel like a slog, especially if you’re faced with rejection after rejection. But what if you could make the whole process more efficient by asking for feedback? Many people feel uncomfortable asking for interview feedback and are worried they’ll look too bold or even make the hiring manager uncomfortable. But perhaps they’re missing a trick…

“Asking for interview feedback takes great strength of character as it shows you’re not afraid of criticism. From a manager’s point of view, this is an incredibly attractive quality in a candidate.”

Is it okay to ask for interview feedback?

Yes, it’s a good idea to ask for feedback after an interview as it enables you to understand both your strengths and weaknesses, all through the eyes of an employer. Since interviewers see an average of 6 candidates per vacancy, they’re able to provide you with invaluable advice about how you can improve.

How to ask for interview feedback

There are a couple of different ways you could ask for interview feedback. Firstly, you could be bold and ask the interviewer for feedback at the end of the interview before you leave. 

The second way to ask for interview feedback is to wait for the call or email to hear if you’ve been successful. Chances are, if you’re asking for feedback at this point then you probably haven’t been successful. 

Not all interviewers will be comfortable with the face-to-face option and would prefer to give interview feedback over email or phone, so it’s down to you to gauge their level of comfort. 

Examples of asking for interview feedback

Asking during the interview:

  • ‘I’ve really enjoyed the interview and hope I’ve come across well. Before I leave, could you tell me if you have any doubts about my ability to succeed in this role?’
  • ‘I understand there are other candidates and the competition is strong. Are there any areas I’m lacking in in comparison to the other candidates you’ve seen?’
  • ‘I understand you provide training. But if I was to be successful with this role, are there any areas of the job you think I’d struggle with currently?’

Asking after the interview:

  • ‘I really appreciate the opportunity and would be grateful if you’re able to share some feedback with me about where I performed well, and what I could have done better.’
  • ‘Thank you for the opportunity. I understand the other candidates were stronger. What would you have needed to see from me to hire me?’
  • ‘I really liked the company and the sound of the role but understand I’m not quite right for it at the moment. If I was to reapply in 6-12 months time, what difference would you like to see in me?’

5 benefits of asking for feedback after an interview

You show strength of character

Asking for interview feedback takes great strength of character as it shows you’re not afraid of criticism. From a manager’s point of view, this is an incredibly attractive quality in a candidate. Managers like to work with people who are open to learning and taking feedback on board. It also shows you’re not afraid of having uncomfortable conversations – which may be a huge bonus if customer interaction is part of the role.

Allows you to address any concerns

What happens if you leave the interview whilst the interviewer isn’t sure if you’re the right fit for the role? You’ll probably end up getting rejected. But if you ask for feedback while you’re still in the interview room, you have the opportunity to address any concerns with the hiring manager and convince them you’re the right person for the job!

You can gauge the interviewer’s management style

Asking for feedback will give you a small insight into the interviewer’s management style. Perhaps they’ll deliver feedback very clearly and constructively, pointing out both the positives and the negatives. Or perhaps they’re a little too direct and hard on the criticism. This gives you a good glimpse into how you’ll work together on the job.

Develops your self-awareness

Receiving feedback from others is a great way to develop your self-awareness. Very often, other people pick up on things about you that you’re not even aware of. This brings the unconscious into the conscious, and allows you to start working on that area to improve it.

Allows you to improve next time

Whatever the feedback, it can be used to improve your interview performance next time. Interviewers spend a lot of time assessing different candidates, so they’ll be able to offer you valuable advice about how you can take it up a level next time.

If you’re currently applying for jobs, don’t forget to check out our top interview tips.

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