What Can You Do About Candidates Ghosting You?


When a job candidate ghosts you, it can bring your recruiting process to a grinding halt. If it comes from one of your top applicants, it’s often difficult to cut bait and move on. You end up wasting time and frustrating everyone involved with the job search. 

Don’t feel ashamed. We’ve all been there. You think all the time and effort that you put into the recruiting process has paid off. You’ve found the perfect candidate. You reach out to see if they are ready to take the next step. 

No response to your initial message? You try again — still nothing. A couple more pings now, things are starting to get embarrassing. You understand that sinking feeling. You’ve just been ghosted. 

Communication poses a significant challenge in any recruitment process. It becomes especially challenging – downright impossible – if you can’t get a candidate to respond.  

Fortunately, there are some steps you can take. By altering components of your job search, you can minimize the likelihood that you’ll get ghosted. Meanwhile, you can be more prepared to take action if it ends up happening. 


Speed Up Your Process

Ghosting becomes more pronounced as candidates lose interest or move on to other opportunities. You make this more likely by drawing out your recruitment process.  

Once you decide to hire someone new, sick to a relatively short timeline, this way, you don’t allow job seekers to let their attention wander. 

Provide a Clear Timeline

Sticking to a compact internal timeline helps limit the possibility of getting ghosted. This gets magnified when you communicate that to your applicants. 

If candidates know when they will likely hear from you, they can prepare. It makes them more likely to respond promptlyAs such, you should communicate your expected timeline with the people who are seeking your open position.  

Maintain Communication

Ghosting becomes more likely when there is a gap in back-and-forth communication. Let a period of time-lapse without an update, and candidates might assume you have ghosted them.  

By keeping consistent contact with your candidates, you improve the chances of keeping their interest. You also turn communication into a habit, making it less likely that they will unceremoniously stop responding. 

Sell the Job Better

People break off communication because they lose interest. This represents a failure on your part to sell the opportunity.  

When candidates are excited by a position, they will quickly reply to your communications. However, without that enticement, they are likely to move on. Keep them interested by building buzz around the company and around the job. 

Give a User-Friendly Interview

A job interview can feel like a hostile situation. Even if you don’t mean it to take on that character, the usual structure has an inherently adversarial vibe.  

Do your best to counteract this negative feelingInstead, use the interview as an opportunity to form a relationship with the candidate. It will lower the chances that they disappear in the future. 

Be Ready to Take the Hint

If you do get ghosted, don’t let it impact your overall plan. The candidate who has broken off communication has essentially said: “I’m not interested.”  

They chose a rude way to communicate the message, but that only means you may have dodged a bullet by not bringing them onto the team. Consider it a favor on the applicant’s part and move on to the potential hire next on your list. 

Looking to Find New Employees?

Managing communication is a frustrating part of the recruiting process. By partnering with a top-flight staffing firm, like DHR, you can eliminate this headache. 

Contact DHR today to learn what their staffing services can do to improve your recruiting processes. 

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