How to Reject a Job Offer by Email

How to Reject a Job Offer by Email

You’ve been offered a job, and you’re not sure if you should reject the offer via email. How do you respectfully decline an offer without burning bridges?

What’s the best way to say “thanks, but no thanks?”

As with most things in life, there is no one correct answer that will work for everyone.

You’ll need to weigh your options before deciding how to respond. This article will help walk you through the process of declining a job offer by email so that it doesn’t damage your professional reputation or relationship with the hiring manager.

Should You Decline a Job Offer in the First Place?

The first thing to consider is why you want to reject the job offer.

Here are some reasons you might reject a job offer:

  • The environment is not what you are looking for, or the culture doesn’t fit your preferences
  • The requirements to access the company’s proprietary information is too complicated and time-consuming
  • You don’t have enough experience or training to meet the needs of the position
  • The salary is much lower than what was discussed initially
  • There’s some other reason in your life that necessitates you to decline the offer

If you’ve made up your mind to reject the job offer, you should give the hiring manager a quick heads up to avoid stringing them along.

If you are still unsure whether or not you want to accept the position, you could indicate that the timing is unsuitable for you and offer to follow up in a few weeks as you continue your search.

Consider whether or not your current job is stable.

If you are content with your current work and there is no reason to believe that your job might be in jeopardy (now or in the near future), it’s best to decline this other offer promptly.

On the other hand, if you’re looking for a new job and the one you’ve been offered meets all of your needs, then you’re reading the wrong article!

Should You Decline a Job Offer via Email?

In some cases, it’s best to decline a job offer by email.

If you are declining an offer for reasons that have nothing to do with your qualifications or experience (such as a salary discrepancy), then following up in person is not necessary.

To some, declining a job offer via email might seem impersonal or rude, but it’s not always the case.

In this article, you will learn how to respectfully decline a job offer via email with dignity and grace so that your professional reputation remains intact.

The Best Way to Turn Down a Job Offer Gracefully

How to Reject a Job Offer by Email

If you’re reading this article, you care how you appear to the hiring manager and don’t want to burn any bridges.

If this is the case, it’s a good idea not to use email to reject the offer but instead pick up the phone and make a call.

Let the hiring manager know that you are declining the job offer with your voice. Let them know it wasn’t the right fit.

This is the number one way to turn down a job offer gracefully.

What Other Ways Can You Decline a Job Offer?

There are other ways to decline a job offer respectfully.

If you really can’t or don’t want to use the phone, you can use email.

If you don’t have access to email, sending a thank-you card with your response is an option.

You can also schedule an in-person meeting.

For the love of God, please do not ever decline a job offer via text message. This gesture can be seen as very unprofessional and rude.

If email is your only option and you don’t want to send out an impersonal message, then it’s best to do some preparation before hitting “send.”

Be sure to thank the hiring manager for their consideration, no matter how you choose to decline the offer.

You never know when that person might need your help in the future or get a job lead of theirs passed on to you!

How to Decline a Job Offer via Email

When you are ready to decline a job offer via email, be sure that your response is well-prepared and polite.

Let’s take a look at some considerations you’ll want to make before hitting “send.”

Your Email Address

If you’re writing an email to the hiring manager to turn down a job offer, then you’ve probably already had some form of communication with the hiring manager via email.

If you have not, make sure you are sending the email using a professional-sounding email address.

If you’re not sure about your email address, try googling “best professional email addresses.”

You can always use the first part of your name or last name

Avoid using a personal email address to decline a job offer since this is unprofessional.

The last thing you want is for the hiring manager to read your rejection letter that came from

The Subject Line

The subject line for declining a job offers is similar to any other email that you might send to the hiring manager.

You should be sure to use a professional subject line, such as: “Decline of Employment Offer” or “Declination of Job Offer.”

That way, it’s clear that your email is about declining the offer so that the hiring manager doesn’t misinterpret it.

The Email Body

You don’t have to go crazy and write anything complex in the email body.

Your goal is to decline the job offer without making it seem like a conversation.

Dear Name,

It is with mixed feelings that I write to you. Thank you for the opportunity to speak with you on the phone and in-person about your open position. I was very excited by what I heard about your company, but it turns out that this isn’t the best opportunity for me. I hope to be able to work with you once again in the future. 

Thanks for taking the time today, and I wish your company much success in the future, 


We are aiming to be polite and direct.

We are not looking for an opportunity to speak with the hiring manager and give them a chance to convince us otherwise.

Your Signature

If you were a perfect potential candidate and you include your phone number within your signature, the hiring manager might take this as a sign that you are still interested.

If you want to clarify that you decline the offer, do not include your phone number.

This decision is a very personal one and should be made based on how convinced you are in turning down the job offer.

What to Expect

How to Reject a Job Offer by Email

The hiring manager might send you a thank-you message for declining the offer.

They might also ask you to reconsider the position if they believe it is an excellent opportunity for you.

They might also send you an email to follow up or call you on the phone.

If they do, be sure that your response is professional and polite no matter their request in the email.


Although email is not the best way to turn down a job, it is the most impersonal and quickest way.

It’s best to do some preparation before hitting “send.”

Be sure that your response is well-prepared and polite; you never know when that person might need your help in the future or get a job lead of theirs passed on to you!

We hope this article helped!

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