How to decline a job offer through email

Conducting a job search involves researching and networking, sending out resumes and cover letters and performing during job interviews. When you finally receive a job offer, if the situation necessitates that you decline it, make your decline professional and courteous. By declining a job offer properly, you leave the door open to future employment possibilities that may become important to you down the road. Declining a job offer through e-mail is one way to refuse the offer.

Address the declining e-mail directly to the person who offered you the position with this person’s business e-mail address.

Begin the email with a salutation directly to the person, using his title and surname followed by a comma.

Thank the person for the job offer, naming the position specifically in the email. Write something positive about the company or about the position.

Continue the email by saying that you regretfully must decline the job offer. Mention the reason briefly without conveying anything negative about the company you are declining. For example, if you are declining because you are choosing a different position with a different company, simply write that you have found a different position that you believe fits your goals better. Do not identify the position you accepted or the company.

Thank the person for the time he spent interviewing and considering you for employment and wish him well in the future.

Write a closing (such as “Sincerely” or “Regards”), skip a line and enter your first and last name.


Inside addresses and datelines are not necessary for e-mail correspondence.

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About the Author

Kathryn Hatter is a veteran home-school educator, as well as an accomplished gardener, quilter, crocheter, cook, decorator and digital graphics creator. As a regular contributor to Natural News, many of Hatter's Internet publications focus on natural health and parenting. Hatter has also had publication on home improvement websites such as Redbeacon.