Are Job Candidates Ghosting You?

As record low unemployment stretches into another year of economic expansion, job candidates in 2020 enjoy an overabundance of opportunities. However, that same labour environment is causing real headaches for hiring companies. One example? To borrow a term from the dating world: Ghosting.

What is ghosting?

“Ghosting occurs when a potential job candidate going through the hiring process skips an interview, doesn’t show for the first day of the job or stops responding to communications,” says Justin Dragoo, a strategic account executive for Aerotek who follows employment and market trends.

An Indeed survey found that, among employers:

  • 83% had experienced ghosting
  • 69% said the trend started within the past two years
  • 65% had job seekers accept an offer and then not show up on their first day

Meanwhile 94% of job seekers who ghost said they experienced little to no consequences. Why are they ghosting?

  • Over 50% decided the job wasn’t right for them
  • 40% ghosted after receiving another offer
  • 26% say they weren’t comfortable with telling the employer they had a change of heart
  • 13% mentioned general communication problems

When do job seekers ghost?

  • 50% failed to attend scheduled job interview
  • 46% stopped replying to recruiters/hiring managers
  • 22% accepted job offer but didn’t show up first day
  • 19% accepted a verbal job offer but never signed paperwork

Reduce the risk of ghosting

Just because the power balance has shifted doesn’t mean that employers are helpless, Dragoo says. He offers the following three tips to reduce the risk:

  1. Move quickly
    Over 70% of job seekers turn to their second-choice job offer if a company takes too long to respond. If you haven’t done so already, streamline your hiring process to ensure you’re not losing out on your first-choice candidates.
  2. Stay in touch
    If you’re not communicating consistently with your candidates, they’ll wonder where they stand and move on to one of their other options. Even if it’s just a brief email, hearing from you with a status update will quell any uncertainty they may feel during the process.
  3. Play the numbers
    Establish a pipeline by holding more interviews than you think you need so you’re not thrown off course by any no-shows.  Most candidates have multiple interviewing going on right now, so make sure your team is prepared with options.

At the end of the day, your recruitment process is only as successful as the candidates it brings on board. Employers need to be open, strategic and responsive to labor market changes if you want to lure top talent away from your hiring competitors. Even if some candidates are doing a disappearing act.

Want to know more about how to recruit reliable candidates? Contact Aerotek now.