We’ve all been there; put hours of work into a job application and then…crickets. It’s disheartening and frustrating. Throw a pandemic and mass unemployment into the mix, and not getting a call-back can be a real blow.

As a salon owner, there’s a good chance you’re the one making calls on who does and doesn’t get to join your team. And as thrilling as it can be to make that phone call to a candidate to offer them a job, you owe it to the unsuccessful applicants to let them know too.

“I get it, a single job posting can get thousands of applications, especially at the moment,” says human resources expert Joelle Nimson. “But people can be fragile, particularly given the number of job losses this year, so if you can, you need to let unsuccessful applicants know they won’t be progressing.”

A simple, pre-preapred email can suffice for applicants that don’t make it to interview stage, says Joelle. “There is a high chance that you’ll cull most applications without ever picking up the phone and speaking to them. But it doesn’t take long to let them know they’re not on the short list. Have a prepared email, highlighting the large volume of applications and that while you appreciate the fact they chose to apply to work in your salon, they weren’t a match this time round. Be kind and grateful, but firm in your stance.”

We’ve all received the thanks-but-no-thanks emails from companies before, and they can be deflating, sure, but it’s not as painful as holding out for a call that never comes.

When it comes to second-round applicants though, Joelle says you need to get in touch with unsuccessful candidates individually, to let them know they weren’t selected. “Call them, thank them for the effort they put into their application and that you were really happy to meet with them. Explain that you’ll be proceeding with another candidate. If you have any constructive advice, now is your chance to offer it. Once they’re over the disappointment, they’ll be grateful for your input.”

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