You are here: Home » » HIRING | Feedback or Not?

HIRING | Feedback or Not?

publication date: Apr 17, 2024
author/source: Surabhi Jain

In the first two articles of this series, I shared how and why I created a transparent job description and interview process that was different than “normal” social sector hiring processes. This article reflects on whether it was worth offering all the candidates an opportunity to receive feedback.

You may remember from my first article that all rejected candidates were offered an opportunity to schedule a 15-minute session with me where I would share feedback on their resume or interviewing process or just brainstorm where some other opportunities may exist for them.

Out of 70 applicants, I had about 25-30 individuals schedule feedback calls with me. The only catch to scheduling these calls was that the earliest I could provide feedback was in January and some of them received rejection emails in October. The reason was that I had decided to take time off in December to rejuvenate after a busy hiring period. As such, my availability in November to provide feedback was limited. (This was clearly mentioned in an email to all rejected candidates.) As soon as individuals received my feedback email, they started scheduling calls in January. Before long, my second and third week of January was filled with 15-minute feedback call calendar invites. At first, I was surprised that so many people wanted feedback but then, was also happy that I could connect and learn more about their accomplishments and what they hoped to do.

Fast forward to January when I realized that the individuals who had scheduled the calls were not joining them. When it happened the first few times, I sent follow-up emails to see if they needed to reschedule or had a challenge connecting. But I didn’t hear back from them. Slowly, this became a pattern. Out of every five or six calls scheduled for the day, only one person would show up. As January ended, I had spoken with only four people out of the 25-30 calls that were scheduled. Less than 20% of the original applicants. This got me asking why so many would schedule calls and then not show? Here’s my hypothesis:

  • In the moment, it’s exciting to be offered feedback on your resume/interviewing skills. But by the time you have to actually show up for the feedback (a few months later in this case), the excitement had worn off.
  • People don’t really care to receive feedback three months after they submitted an application. They likely moved on and found a job. The feedback wouldn’t have helped them.
  • People forget or they don’t look at their calendar. Or, even if they do—they can’t remember why they scheduled the meeting in the first place.

Next time, if I decide to offer feedback, I will make sure it is offered in a more timely manner and perhaps send reminder emails a week ahead of time to make sure people are still interested in the feedback.

Surabhi Jain is the Executive Director of Toronto’s Workforce Funder Collaborative. She brings over two decades of experience in the social impact sector working to advance access to education and jobs for marginalized communities in the US and Canada. As a founder of a women’s leadership fellowship, Surabhi brings together white, black, indigenous, and other women of colour to share their lived experiences around systemic inequities like race, gender, patriarchy. Additionally, as a consultative coach, Surabhi works with individuals and organizations to embed equity and inclusion in their work that leads to tangible changes and fosters a more inclusive environment. To connect with Surabhi, visit

Like this article?  Join our mailing list for more great information!

Copyright © 2011-Current, The Hilborn Group Ltd. All rights reserved.

Free Fundraising Newsletter
Join Our Mailing List