A Guide to Writing Professional Rejection Letters

It’s never easy letting someone down. But you might have to reject a business proposal because of several reasons.

Maybe their proposal didn’t meet your company’s needs or failed to comply with requirements. Whichever the case, you want to break it to them gently. If you don’t know how to start, it can help to look at an RFP proposal rejection letter sample .

In this article, we’ll share some great samples you can refer to when writing your letter. We’ll also share a step-by-step guide to help you deliver the news professionally and kindly.

What is an RFP Rejection Letter?

An RFP rejection letter is a document sent to vendors who respond to the requests for proposals (RFPs) sent out by a business. It informs the vendor that their proposal has been declined and details why their offer was rejected.

While delivering difficult news, it should still show appreciation for the time and effort put into submitting the proposal. A concise but empathetic RFP rejection letter can help maintain goodwill between vendors and businesses.

Types of RFP Rejection Letters

  • Noncompliance: This type of rejection letter is sent when an applicant fails to adhere to the requirements or terms outlined in the RFP. The letter should explain why the proposal was rejected and offer advice on improving future proposals. 
  • Price Negotiation: If a vendor’s pricing proposal is too high, this type of RFP rejection letter is sent to the vendor. It informs them they were not selected due to their higher price quote. The letter may suggest that the vendor re-submit a new bid with more competitive prices.
  • Rescinding a Request: When an organization cancels its plans after issuing an RFP, it will notify all applicants through this letter. The letter should include the reason why the organization changed its mind. 
  • Notice of Award: This type of RFP rejection letter communicates to unsuccessful bidders that their proposal was rejected. It then informs them that another bidder has been selected for the project. The letter should include which party won the award and provide contact information if further questions arise.

How to Write Professional and Kind Rejection Letters

Writing a rejection letter is much less complicated than others let it out to be. You want to be straightforward but also use a friendly tone.

Follow these steps to get started:

Start by thanking them for their proposal.

The vendor made an effort to make a proposal for you, so it’s only polite to thank them. Address them either by their name or greet their business as a whole. You can also give positive feedback if you like anything about the proposal.

Be clear when rejecting their offer.

Don’t drag your letter on too long before giving them the bad news. Your recipients will thank you for not wasting their time on a lengthy letter. Be clear and gentle while giving them the news, don’t leave room for interpretation.

Let them know the reason why.

You’re not required to give them a reason for rejecting the proposal, but it can help them better understand and accept the decision. It will also provide them with something to work on to improve future proposals.

You can go the more general route if you don’t want to get into the specifics. You could say, “Our needs have changed, and we decided to work on a different proposal.”

End your letter on a professional note.

Just as you started your letter positively, you want to end it that way. I wish them luck in their future endeavors. If you’re open to working with them in the future, mention that too.

Close your letter with a signature. You can also include your contact information to entertain further questions about the proposal.

How to write a persuasive proposal
How to write a persuasive proposal

Proposal Rejection Letter Sample

Sample 1

Dear [Name],

Thank you for your proposal and the time and effort you invested in presenting it. Unfortunately, after careful deliberation, we regret to inform you that we cannot accept it now.

I understand that this is a difficult decision to hear. We did not take this lightly and considered all aspects of your offer before choosing. Ultimately, we found that our needs do not perfectly align with your proposed services, so we cannot move forward together.

Once again, thank you for considering us, and I wish you luck with your endeavors. Please feel free to reach out if you need further clarification.

Yours Sincerely,


Sample 2

Dear [Name],

We want to thank you for the proposal you submitted, and it was clear that much time and effort went into creating it. Unfortunately, after careful consideration, we have decided not to accept your proposal.

Although your proposal had several appealing points and showed potential, it did not meet the company’s needs.

I wish you all the best in finding success in future endeavors, and I hope you remain optimistic about achieving your goals. Thank you again for submitting your proposal.



Sample 3

Dear [Recipient],

Thank you for the generous proposal that you sent in. After due consideration and research, we regret to inform you that the project has been awarded to someone else.

While your proposal was great, it did not fit our requirements. We appreciate your willingness to put forth a great effort in providing us with an excellent proposal.

We wish you all the best in your future endeavors and remain committed to working with businesses like yours in the future.

Yours Sincerely,


Final Words

Writing rejection letters isn’t all that complicated. Just remember to be straightforward and find the balance between professional and nice. Hopefully, this article’s proposal rejection letter sample has given you a clear idea of how to get started.

If you ever find yourself stuck on writing your letter, you can always turn to AI writing tools like the INK AI Assistant. INK can write anything for you, from blogs, and essays, to rejection letters. This way, you don’t have to stress too much about how to break the news to them.

Abir is a data analyst and researcher. Among her interests are artificial intelligence, machine learning, and natural language processing. As a humanitarian and educator, she actively supports women in tech and promotes diversity.

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