Backing Out on an Accepted Offer of Employment

This question and answer series is taken from Quora. This question is about whether backing out on an accepted offer of employment will burn bridges with that employer and put a candidate at risk for being passed over for future opportunities with that same organization.

If you withdraw from the hiring process after accepting an offer, then the HR/Recruiting team would definitely be disappointed, but you shouldn’t assume you are “blacklisted” as a result. If your recruiter reaches out to you to find out what happened and why you rescinded your offer acceptance, there’s no need for you to provide a lot of details, but I would suggest that you be open and share if there is anything that would help them understand where they went wrong in the process.

Maybe the other offer you got was for your “dream job” or had a better salary, more career development opportunities or a shorter commute. There are a lot of legitimate reasons why this happens, and if you are gracious, appreciative of their time, and professional in your interactions with them, you shouldn’t assume you can never apply for a position with that company again.

That said, don’t ever just ignore the company and stop responding. You accepted an offer to join their team, and you owe them at least a clear, polite communication to let them know that you will not be joining them, after all. The worst thing you can do is vanish and stop responding to them-that’s truly unprofessional and would earn you a (justified) place on my list of unprofessional candidates not to consider again.

Photo credit: btaroli via Foter.com / CC BY