Recent news surfaced after a young woman was “forced” to decline a job offer due to the unpleasant interview methods used by the company’s CEO. Ashamedly, situations like this happen more often than you would expect, but it’s very difficult to prove without evidence of unprofessional behaviour in an interview room. Contributor Naomi Aharony, HR Manager and Co-Founder – Reboot Online.
Ultimately, there could be multiple reasons a candidate would reject a job offer such as lack of perks, time it takes to travel and negative online reviews. To explore the topic further, online digital marketing agency Reboot Online Marketing ltd wanted to investigate what the British public ranked as the top 10 decision factors for rejecting a job offer. They surveyed 1,486 British men and women who, for different reasons, felt like it was the best decision to decline a job offer.
Perhaps expected, the most significant reason why candidates were forced to say ‘no’ to a job was due to an ‘unpleasant interview experience’ (78%). This was followed by reading ‘negative online reviews’ (69%) and encountering ‘rude staff’ (62%) when attending the interview. ‘Lack of transport links’ and ‘commuting distance too far’ were also cited as two of the main factors contributing towards Brits politely declining a job offer at 54% and 52% respectively.
And coming in second to last, Reboot Online Marketing found that 33% are put off by ‘office aesthetics’. Whilst, more interestingly, a ‘gender imbalance’ (20%) was a significant deciding factor for many British men and women looking for work.
Simultaneously, 44% of those surveyed said they’ve complained to HR about their unpleasant interview experience while 66% said they refused the role without any complains.
Georgia, aged 26, describes her experience when interviewed, forcing her to refuse the job she had applied for:
“Shortly after I graduated, I had a car accident which forced me to move back in with my parents. Suddenly, I found myself having to start again in an unfamiliar place, with no real work experience. I knew finding a job was going to be a challenge.
I went to an interview I was hopeful about; the role was diverse, so I’d learn a lot; the team was small but of a similar age group, so I’d make friends – and it was full-time with a decent wage. It seemed like the perfect opportunity.
My interview was with the company owner and his secretary. Instantly, I was made to feel uncomfortable. He didn’t smile, he didn’t shake my hand, he responded to any interaction with one-word answers. He grilled me on my lack of experience and why I had chosen to “give up” and move to a new area (a personal factor I didn’t feel was relevant) – he asked me anything but what I could bring to the role and could offer the team.
Shortly after I left the interview, shaken and on the brink of tears. The secretary sent me an email to offer me the role. Safe to say I sent an email back expressing how uncomfortable and worthless I had been made to feel, in such a challenging time in my life, and I refused the offer. In my mind, no role is worth being made to feel small.”
Naomi Aharony, HR Manager and Co-Founder of Reboot Online, commented on the issue: “It is vital for an interviewer to have the skillset required to recognise a nervous or uneasy interviewee and to be able to put them at ease. This ability will ensure that the interviewer does not miss out on a great candidate due to unnecessary stress caused by the situation itself.”