Guide: How to Say Thanks But No Thanks to a Recruiter

When it comes to politely declining a job offer or expressing your disinterest in a recruitment process, it’s crucial to do so gracefully and maintain a positive relationship with the recruiter. Expressing your gratitude while declining the opportunity shows your professionalism and respect for the recruiter’s time and effort. This guide provides tips and examples of how to say thanks but no thanks to a recruiter, with both formal and informal approaches.

Formal Ways to Decline:

1. Express your appreciation:

Dear [Recruiter’s Name],

I wanted to extend my sincerest appreciation for considering me as a potential fit for the [Job Position] at [Company]. I was impressed by [Company’s Name] and the opportunity to contribute to such an esteemed organization.

2. Be honest and concise:

While I am honored to have been considered for the position, I have decided not to proceed with the recruitment process. After careful consideration, I feel that the role may not align perfectly with my long-term career goals.

3. Provide a reason, if comfortable:

Although I was excited to learn more about [Company’s Name] and the [Job Position], I have recently been offered another opportunity that I believe better aligns with my skillset and career aspirations.

4. Express gratitude and offer goodwill:

I hope you understand my decision, and I want to express my deepest gratitude for your time, effort, and consideration throughout the recruitment process. I wish you and [Company’s Name] continued success in finding the ideal candidate for the role.

Informal Ways to Decline:

1. Show appreciation and personalize:

Hi [Recruiter’s Name],

I just wanted to take a moment to personally thank you for considering me for the [Job Position] at [Company’s Name]. I truly appreciate the opportunity and the time you’ve dedicated to speaking with me.

2. Communicate your decision:

Unfortunately, after much thought, I have decided that this particular role isn’t the right fit for me. While I admire [Company’s Name]’s mission and values, I believe that my skills and interests lie in a slightly different direction.

3. Express goodwill and wrap it up on a positive note:

I genuinely appreciate your understanding, and I wanted to convey my best wishes to you and the team at [Company’s Name]. You have been fantastic to work with, and I hope our paths cross again in the future.

Additional Tips:

  • Be prompt: Respond to the recruiter as soon as possible to show respect for their time and to maintain a positive impression.
  • Maintain a positive tone: Regardless of your decision, always maintain a warm and appreciative tone throughout your message.
  • Keep it concise: Be polite, but avoid lengthy explanations or unnecessary details. Get straight to the point without sounding rude.
  • Personalize your response: Mention something specific about the company or the recruiter to show that you genuinely engaged with the opportunity.


Dear [Recruiter’s Name],

I would like to express my gratitude for considering me as a candidate for the [Job Position] at [Company’s Name]. I am very thankful for the opportunity to learn more about [Company’s Name]’s innovative work in the field.

After careful consideration, I have decided that pursuing this opportunity would not align with my current career goals. I appreciate your understanding and want to extend my best wishes in finding the perfect candidate for the role.

Thank you once again for your time and consideration. I hope our paths may cross in the future.


[Your Name]

Remember, declining a job offer or withdrawing from a recruitment process is a normal part of the professional journey. How you handle the situation can leave a lasting impression on the recruiter. By expressing your gratitude and politely declining, you can maintain a positive relationship and keep doors open for potential opportunities in the future.

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