Avoiding and Managing Rescinded Job Offers

Talk about a job seeker’s worst nightmare! Back in June, Coinbase and several other major tech companies started a wave of layoffs and even began rescinding job offers. New hires that were days away from starting new roles were told their positions were no longer available.

Even in the most stable economic times, employers can rescind job offers for a variety of reasons, including:

  • Failure to pass a background check.
  • Negotiating offers after they have already been accepted.
  • Poor feedback from references

In the case of Coinbase, it had nothing to do with the candidates’ qualifications or likeability and everything to do with economic turbulence. This can have a massive impact on the job seeker who may have already given notice and closed the books with their previous employer.

While mass offer rescinding is rare, recent inflation and a potential recession is causing companies to rapidly rethink internal structures and shift long-term planning toward resiliency in the face of unknown factors.

How can you minimize your chances of having your offer rescinded? 

  • Ask questions that help get a sense of the long-term planning for the role.
  • Be clear on the clearances and background checks required for the role. One of the significant reasons employers can rescind an offer is failure to pass a background check. Make sure to disclose anything that might be questioned ahead of time.
  • Negotiate the details before signing an offer. We always recommend advocating for yourself. But it is crucial to respect the business’ process and agree to terms before you accept the offer.
  • Hold off on giving notice to a current employer until the details are ironed out. Two weeks’ notice at minimum is still advised but hold off until you are sure all variables for the new role have cleared.

If you should find yourself in the position of having an offer rescinded, try not to panic. 

  • Ask for feedback. Uncover the details about why the company rescinded the offer – was it an internal shift, or did something come up during a background check? Knowledge is power.
  • Consider your relationship with your former employer. If you left on your own accord, you might be able to go back and explain the situation. Chances are they haven’t filled your position yet.
  • Follow up with cold leads to let them know you are available again. If you were entertaining multiple offers and opportunities, you could go back to those companies and note that you are available.
  • Stay open to follow-up, even if there are other offers in your midst. Be gracious and open to future possibilities. Maybe the role needed to be pushed out while the company ironed out details.

Will these suggestions make you immune to having an offer rescinded? Of course not, but they can arm you against many of the variables of a turbulent job market.

Holian Associates provides strategy, resources and coaching for every stage of your career. If you need help with personalized career coaching, job search strategy, career transition, resume creation, LinkedIn development, interview preparation,  professional strengths coaching, salary compensation & benefits coaching, or navigating your job search as a college student or recent college grad, email us at Julia@careertransformationpartners.com or give us a call at (925) 451-3183.

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