Manager Daniel Stendel has conceded Hearts' goal must now be to avoid relegation as the pointless start to his reign continued with defeat at Hamilton.
The Tynecastle club are anchored at the foot of the Scottish Premiership with three losses under their new boss after Saturday's 2-1 reverse.
They now face a massive Edinburgh derby at home to Hibernian on Thursday.
"Today was a very bad day for me, for the club and the fans," said Stendel.
"I think the biggest thing for us now is just to avoid relegation. We have to be realistic. Maybe some players will surprise me in the future or we have to change things.
"I take responsibility for the last two weeks and the last three results. But it's difficult to accept some performances. I think the problem is not just from the last two weeks but from a long time before."
Hearts and their hosts started off the afternoon level on points but goals from Mickel Miller and Will Collar inflicted their fourth straight defeat and their ninth loss of the league campaign so far.
The Gorgie side's last win came on 9 November.
"We played last week against St Johnstone and today against Hamilton. Both were the worst teams in the league at that time and we lost them both," admitted Stendel.
"You can see our problem is not scoring goals. We created some good chances today but didn't take them. We needed to get that first goal so we could get more confidence and get a lift.
"We had to show our quality. In some positions the quality is not good enough at the moment. It's hard. I decided to take on this challenge and I will do my best."