Not being offered a job you felt you were the perfect candidate for can be disheartening. But you can turn this in to a positive – by asking for feedback.

Whether your CV doesn’t make it past the application stage, or you’ve been through the interview process, you’ll most likely want to know why you were unsuccessful; and whilst there’s no requirement for employers to give feedback, it’s in their interests – not just yours – to do so.

Accountancy firm KPMG has just announced that it’s changing its graduate recruitment process to address the concerns of applicants – who were unhappy about the length of time the process took as well as about not receiving feedback when they were unsuccessful. Many employers now offer feedback to unsuccessful applicants – especially those who have made it through to interview stage – and it can help companies encourage better applications as well as give applicants a better chance of success in the future.

Perhaps you didn’t demonstrate your relevant skills, maybe you hadn’t researched the company thoroughly enough before your interview or perhaps there was another candidate who simply had more experience. Whatever the reason, knowing why you weren’t offered the job will help you be more prepared for your next application – whether applying with the same company or for other similar jobs.

It may be that you only just missed out on a position and that it was another candidate’s greater experience that got them the job – rather than your lack of experience.

As Duncan at Power Resourcing says: “Asking for feedback can show that you’re still interested in the company – and if things don’t work out with the new employee they did offer the job to, then you could be the next person they call.”