Offer rescinded, now what?

Q: I am in between jobs.  I left my last job in May and accepted a job starting in June.  The company rescinded the offer because of “changing business conditions.”  Now I am without a job.  I am looking for employment in the Boston area, and I am a seasoned admin.  I would prefer a few days per week working remotely, as I don’t trust that co-workers are always vaccinated and many don’t wear masks inside the office.  What are my next steps Job Doc?

A: I am sorry to learn of your rescinded offer.  Rescinded offers are rare, but they do occur.  It is a very unfortunate outcome of a difficult business climate for many employers.  Some employers are hiring, but many employers, in retail or hospitality, are still trying to navigate the pandemic.

Sometimes we forget that businesses are comprised of people.  And people misjudge, miscalculate, and sometimes struggle with forecasts, projections, and hiring plans.  I don’t think anyone can claim to be a hiring expert in 2020-2021.  I know most of our clients are trying to determine who works onsite, who works remotely, what their office space will look like, who is vaccinated, who isn’t, should employees wear masks, etc.  Additionally, this pandemic has wreaked havoc around the world, so sometimes even ordering a simple part for a car takes weeks (vs. days).

The first step I would take is to file for unemployment compensation.  Unemployment compensation is not typically available to those who have resigned.  However, your situation is different.  You should explain that you left your former employer and accepted a new role and that the employment offer was rescinded.  If you have an offer letter and a document (even an email) that explains that the offer was rescinded, then that could be helpful in further explaining your situation.  Your situation is unusual.  Here is a link that may be helpful to you.

Then, I would begin networking and explaining your predicament to your contacts, both personal and professional.  Try your best to avoid badmouthing the employer who rescinded the offer.  You may never know the exact reasons, on what was behind the decision.

If you landed the new offer with a placement firm, I would make sure that you stay in touch with them.  I would re-connect with former co-workers, colleagues, and get active on LinkedIn and Indeed.  It is important to jump back into the search.

It is important to recall that you had a recent successful experience in securing new employment!

Pattie Hunt Sinacole is a human resources expert and works for First Beacon Group in Hopkinton, an HR consulting firm. She contributes weekly to Jobs and the Boston Sunday Globe Money & Careers section.