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Being told I’m not experienced enough to get a senior dev job I interviewed for.
Even though I aced the first 4 interview rounds, the tech test feedback was “the best solution they had ever seen”, and I’ve been a senior dev for 25 years.
Time wasting assholes.3
The most disappointing (not so sure about upsetting) rejection was from none other than Google.
I was ecstatic when Google respond to my application by inviting me to an interview. If I recall rightly I had two pre-interview screenings, two technical interviews, and about four interviews with people. The people were great and the HR person I was dealing with was open that the feedback was all good.
And then the rejection came! I called the HR guy and asked what happened. He said there’s a central group somewhere who approve all hiring and they decided I hadn’t worked for a “big enough” company in the past.
Yet - my potential colleagues and manager thought I could do the job, I passed the Google-scale technical tests … and then some faceless person somewhere says “meh” and that’s that.
It’s not like they didn’t have my resume that whole time, or the opportunity to ask any questions they wanted !
So that sucked.10
German gov contractor interview.
1 interview went fine, test project went fine, then they told me all looks good and they'll fly me in so I can meet HR in person.
Flew up to Germany and there are solution architects and project managers in the room questioning me about C++ although it was about a java position.
Then told me that I'm no fit for them as their java devs need to be rock solid in C++ to make communication between departments easier. What the...8
Went in, done everything perfectly, they want me in… cool.
“We know you have a 2 months notice, but could you boil it down to 2 weeks?”
“I uh… no… not really, I have tasks to pass and I doubt the company would like me to just rush out like that…”
“Come on, just stop working and tell them to fire you”
“I… no? I told you I have an important role it would be irresponsible to just leave like that… assuming they want me out that bad…”
“Okay then give notice and we’ll send you the contract”
1 week later, fortunately I didn’t give the notice
“Aaaah regarding the contract… we are postponing it for 4 months cause we needed 2 roles and we decided to hire the other role as we wait”
2 months and a half later, still didn’t give notice cause the postponing was a red flag
“Aaah sorry buddy the budget is not enough but we have to wait 3 more months cause investors moved the payment to January”
Never heard from them again… fortunately I didn’t give the notice and I started to search another job after the 2 months and a half thing.
Remember: until the contract is signed, nothing is set in stone.11
During the interview they asked if I had other interviews or offers. I had one more interview and am offer. They emailed me the next day and say "we don't like to be strong armed". I'm assuming it's because I told them the truth about having an offer? We hadn't even talked about salary yet so it's not like I somehow "bullied" them into giving me more money.
Part of me didn't care because obviously this company was garbage and I dodged a bullet (plus I had an offer that was decent anyways). But the other part of me couldn't believe how fragile they were and how entitled they felt. Why ask the question if you don't want to know the answer? Where I'm at now, I got another offer before they made a decision. I had to decide within a couple days. I told them, and without any further conversation made me an offer 10k above the originally discussed salary. It was clear they were decent and so far I've been right.7
Being rejected as "unprofessional" for explaining that I don't want to rush a decision 2 days before Christmas. By the guy who, I kid you not, showed their EKS credentials on screen during a recorded online interview. Kinda glad I dodged that one now that I'm looking back...6
This one ticked me off because of the sheer rudeness of a demand they made of me. I had been building a personal freelance brand around myself and my skills for many years. I had in the prior 3 years developed it from a freelance to a lean agency model. That was running in parallel with full time work and the FT employer was happy to allow it. Eventually that employer downsized me and almost everyone else on staff. But they liked me and gave me mini-projects to do on a contract basis. I began interviewing for FT work with other companies.
One agency I applied at gave me a phone screen interview. The main hiring person was also an investor in the agency. He noted my lean agency and said that a second interview would be contingent on my dropping my clients that I was working for on my own time, disposing completely of my personal brand, and even giving up my domain name.
I told him I’d think about it. But the more I thought about it the more angry I got about such a stupid request. Why does this new company I don’t even know I will like working for get to tell me to abandon my “Plan B” option for if I quit or they decide to lay me off?
They never called back but I wished they had so I could have had the satisfaction of telling them no.2
Most upsetting interview rejection?
Back when I graduated college, I did the usual rounds of interviews with insurance companies, banks, various other institutional businesses set up by the college's career center.
One local insurance company interview I thought went great. Usual 'Where do you see yourself in 5 years?' type questions, told her about my job history, very high level type stuff.
Couple of weeks later I get a letter in the mail and after the usual 'It was great to meet you blah blah blah', it ended with
'State Farm will never consider you for a position with our company.'
Never?! My then fiance (now wife) yelled "WHAT DID YOU DO?!!!" and I racked my brain for anything I might have said or done. The HR lady was attractive, but I didn't stare at any body parts and I didn't make any weird sexual advances (I was nervous enough without *that* going thru my mind).
The college career center floods the local companies with graduates and I was #5 in the waiting room that day. My only guess was they got me confused with someone else.
My fiance wanted me to call them immediately to straighten out any misunderstanding, but I knew what was done, was done. It's not like they would realize "Oh, that's right, it was Bob that kept looking at Karen's breasts, not you...come work for us!" Besides, why would I want to work someplace that didn't know/care who I was?6
I wouldn't say it's upsetting but confusing.
I had an interview at a household name where I asked for feedback. They only told me I did well in the technical and every other area, and that I was the first person they interviewed in the last 2 months to make it passed the technical part.
Less than half a day later I got a rejection email.3
Your profile is in consideration.
HR: We'll let you know.
HR: You're one of the top 3 under consideration.
**HR won't answer/reply to text/emails
I accepted the truth.
Corporate world: Welcome to the employee life!
This was my first ever interview, referred by a guy I met on LinkedIn.5
Just graduated in CS.
All jobs required experience in stuff I never seen/heard before (back then I didn’t know most job listings were copy pasted by people who knew less than me).
I felt so inadequate that I replied to a job offer as a seller as they asked only fluency in 2 foreign languages.
The company owner during the interview looked at me and told me I needed to look elsewhere, that mine was a good resume and then he dropped this:
“I can see you are a good guy, but for this job I need an asshole”
Back then it was very hard for me but now I understand10
I dedicate this to all of those hr gurus from top tech companies that rejected me cause they think I won’t fit their culture despite me crushing all their technical interviews, fuck them and their soft skills stupid questions.
I won’t fit there anyways cause I can express my own thoughts using sarcasm and irony and I’m not scared of doing it cause I don’t care about your amazing company culture that prefer robots not people with a little sense of humor. I don’t care about my failures cause there was so many I don’t give a fuck. And by the way if you ask me why I want to work in your amazing company I would always say cause you asked me to work for you and now you treat me like shit. Then 10 years later you blame everyone for toxic culture lol.2
Last 7 or 8....
I took 3 years of formation to get a job in a specialized area... To be offered only minimum wages.
On one I felt so offended that I was rude to the interviewer... Stupid lady saying that small people only get minimum wages...
And I was rude to her again last week... I'm trying to change jobs and replied to a job offer from the same company (dissimulated, I only knew because of the email) my reply: no thank you... If I wanted to work for minimum wage I would go cleaning...4
Not a rejection per se, but a company I applied to just stopped emailing me after trying to arrange a day for me to come to the office and meet the team, following an informal phone interview. They dragged their heels while I was on leave and by the time they got back to me I was back at work and had limited time. They basically just ghosted me after that.
I've actually already discussed this one on here I believe
I see this job looking for an android developer for Kotlin with UI experience with XD & Figma and experience with Firebase. I have all of these qualifications so I throw my resume into the fray within an 2 hours the recruiters contact me. they have an offer of 76,000 and I'm looking for junior so I'm like, eh whatever, I give them a copy of my resume and we hold discussion for a few days and then radio silence. I then see a job posting EXTREMELY similar but with a "different company" so I throw my resume in and again within 2 hours I get a call only THIS TIME ITS THE INTERNAL HR. She sounds interested we have a good conversation and sets me up for 96,000 and they schedule me for my first interview within the week. Interview goes great, next I meet with the CTO and we have a pretty good conversation, I'm expecting a technical exam but it doesn't happen instead they give me a case study. they send me requirements for an app API to use, architecture, and a week time span to do it. I finish the app with extra features within 6 days, in my understanding of MVVM and I was excited and happy about this app because its JUST NICE. a week goes by and I meet with the tech team. They grill me on my application, scalability, use cases, how would I advertise or place advertisement and I'm answering everything they love the UI (I included mockups I made on XD), they say everything sounds good everyone leaves with smiles they say they have to find out on what team to place me because they have multiple apps and that HR will be in contact with me in the next few days... A WEEK GOES BY and I randomly get the declination email that next Friday. When I asked for feedback they said it wasn't true MVVM. I was devastated until the next week when I was accepted for a higher paying job that didn't require me to move. After I accepted this job guess who calls? THE FIRST RECRUITER and for this long I was wondering if this was the same job due to the very similar job description so I ask "is your client XXXXXXX?" it was I just told him "I'm good" and hung up4
I've said this before, but i always get the spot I'm hoping for. there was one time i got rejected though.
i met a colleague during the interview process, and really thought he was getting that spot, he was much more qualified than the other participants. there was about another 4, out of which 3 still looked like good competition. the 4th one got there late, couldn't form a coherent sentence to save his life and had no job experience.
guess who they picked :v8
Definitely the time when already had the job and had been getting no negative feed back or anything, then suddenly half way through the third month of my three month probation "Yea, we're not keeping you"1
Wouldn't say it was upsetting so much as mind-bending...
Attended an interview with a mid-size web development agency in 2017. The recruiter fed back from this agency that the interviewers didn't think I'd had enough experience of an agency environment. I'd spent six years in the industry at this point, and five and a half of those years were in agencies. The recruiter was as mystified as I was over that one.
Lol .. as per my experience they don't even have time to reject me :P
If I do not listen any words from them for 1-2 days .. I conclude that I was rejected.. Mostly don't even bother to tell you that you are not selected.
They offered a coding test alongside a resume. So I took it and did extremely well. Showcased my talents wonderfully. They ask for an interview (video call). We do the first half of the interview with an HR rep, goes great, a little over schedule. So we go into the second half with a little over twenty minutes left, and the hiring engineer wants me to write some code. He explains my task and sends me to a site where I can write and execute the code and he can watch. I had never written code with an audience before, and between that and my now 20 minute timer, I was a tangled up ball of nerves. Needless to say, I blew it, writing nothing of worth. He ends the call and I open my IDE. Working solution in 7 minutes. I got a rejection email two days later. Worst part? The company employed the author of one of my favorite "learn to code books". Would have been amazing to work with him. Really demotivating to say the least.2
My most upsetting rejection come from before I got into tech.
I was working in visitor services at a a cultural institution and I was trying to transfer to a different department. A big show was about to open and we were anticipating large crowds. I was tired of the stickup rich people that made of most of our guests. Now, there would plebs would be coming in droves and they would be even more ill behaved.
I didn’t get the job and had to continue on visitor services. It was upsetting because I was trying to save myself from mental stress. I went through months of being verbally demeaned by gross visitors and had physical injuries from working the incessant crowds. Only the seasonal hires were given special gifts when the show ended and I received nothing.
I did reapply for the transfer again when the position reopened a year later. I got the job. The hiring manager admitted that he should have hired me the last time. The girl they hired left after a year because she wanted to go to grad school. They wanted someone who was going to stay longer because training and hiring takes time.