4 sample emails to keep candidates warm as toast

You’ve written the perfect job description, published your job application and you’ve invited candidates to interviews. ✅

But you’ve hit a snag in the process in the form of a pesky hiring delay. Though not ideal, it happens to the best of hiring managers. The right way to remedy this is by regularly communicating with your candidates and potential new teammates clearly and promptly.

Use any of these sample emails to help keep your candidates warm, engaged and informed throughout your hiring process. Customize them to suit your brand and style, and you’ll be well on your way to an A+ candidate experience — despite the delays!

📣 Recruiting email templates that help you improve the candidate experience

Sample #1: Keep candidates warm if the position has been put on hold

Use this email template when a position has been put on hold, from a couple of weeks to a few months. Whatever it may be, be sure to provide the candidate with a rough timeline of when you hope to start hiring again. You don’t want to leave the candidate in the dark — especially if they’re in talks with other companies (they may be close to getting another job offer) or if they need a new job ASAP. Honesty and clarity will do wonders for the candidate and for your reputation as an employer.

Subject line: Update on job opportunity with [Company Name]

Hi [Candidate's First Name],

I hope this finds you well! I’m emailing with an update regarding the [Job Title] position at [Company Name]. Firstly, I want to express my gratitude for your interest in our company and the time you've invested in our interview process. Your enthusiasm and qualifications have left a positive impression on us.

I wanted to let you know that due to some unexpected internal developments, we've had to temporarily put the hiring process for the [Job Title] role on hold. We expect to pick up the hiring process again in [Timeline].

While I understand this might not be the news you were hoping to hear, I want to assure you that this is not the end of our conversation, should you still be interested in this role. We’re committed to revisiting this as soon as we sort everything out.

If you have any questions or concerns or if you’d like to discuss the timeline, please feel free to send me a message.

Once again, thanks for your interest in [Company Name]. I'll be sure to keep you updated on any developments related to the [Job Title] position.

Warm regards,

[Your Name]

[Your Email Signature]

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Sample #2: Delay in hiring process email template

If you need to delay the hiring process for an open role, this is the email template you can turn to. Sharing what you can while you sort things out internally, you’ll want to inform candidates that they'll have to wait a bit longer before you can proceed with the hiring process.

Subject line: Update on the hiring process with [Company Name]

Hi [Candidate's Name],

Thanks for your interest in the [Job Title] position at [Company Name].

I wanted to inform you that we're currently experiencing some unexpected delays in our hiring process. We apologize for slowing this down and we want to assure you that we're working hard to get everything sorted on our end.

Please know that your candidacy and interest in this role are really important to us, and we will get back to you as soon as we can with the next steps.

We appreciate your patience during this time and if you have any questions, feel free to reach out.

Kind regards,

[Your Name]

[Your Email Signature]

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📣 Need to tell a candidate you’ve received their job application? Use this applicant acknowledgement email template to communicate like a pro

Sample #3: Keep candidates warm after the second or third interview round

Use this email template to let your strongest candidates know you need a bit more time to make the final decision. The goal is to keep them informed and reassure them of your interest in their candidacy — because the last thing you want to do is leave them in the dark when they’ve already invested so much time in your company's job interview process!

Subject line: Update on our hiring process

Hi [Candidate's Name],

I really appreciate your patience during our interview process for the [Job Title] position and the time and effort you’ve put into this. I wanted to let you know that we’re in the final stages of our decision-making process and are aiming to have a decision to share with you by [Specific Timeline].

Thanks for your interest in joining our team, and I’ll follow up by [Date]. Please let me know if you have any questions in the meantime.


[Your Name]

[Your Email Signature]

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<div class="inpage-callout-container"><p class="inpage-banner-text">Pro Tip 🔥: Even if you’re not a professional or full-time recruiter, there’s no reason why your hiring can’t be professional. You can quickly and easily schedule these emails with good hiring software. Keep all replies in one place (perfect for collaborative hiring) and move candidates to the next stage of your hiring process.</div></p>

Sample #4: Keep candidates warm if you need a few more days

If you only need just a few more days to work out the final details of the job offer (or potentially the candidate rejection letter), communicate this with your candidates. Side note: If you’ve previously been in touch with the candidate via phone, it’s a nice personal touch to give them a call with this information. It shows you care about keeping them in the loop throughout this hiring process. You can also communicate this via email using this email template.

Subject line: Brief delay in our decision-making process

Hi [Candidate's Name],

I wanted to send you a quick update regarding our hiring process for the [Job Title] position.

We need a few more days to ensure a thorough evaluation and make an informed decision.

Thank you for your patience, and I assure you that I’ll get back to you with our decision by [Date].

Best regards,

[Your Name]

[Your Email Signature]

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Sending thoughtful candidate emails

When it comes to emailing job candidates, especially emails intended to keep them engaged and interested in the job opportunity, there are a few things you should remember. Always be sure to:

  • Thank them again for their patience: Regardless of how long the candidate has to wait, you want them to know their patience is appreciated!
  • Take time to answer any questions they might have: Getting (or not getting) a job is a big deal and they deserve to get the full picture of what’s going on with the opportunity and potential offer.
  • Provide a decision timeline, if possible: If you can, let candidates know when they can expect to hear from you. If a candidate is further along the hiring process with another company, they’ll want to know if they should speed things up or slow it down to accommodate your timeline.

About the author
Alessia Musso
Alessia is Homerun's resident Canuck and Content Writer based in London. She's been writing B2B content for small and medium-sized businesses for eight years and is passionate about helping people feel more confident (and happy!) in their jobs. When she’s not researching the ways growing teams can improve their hiring, she’s probably thinking about pasta, books, craft beer, and the importance of the Oxford comma.
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