For years, candidates have complained that the way that many of them find out that they have been unsuccessful for a role is when recruiters ‘ghost’ them (don’t respond to their application).
‘Ghosting’ is a term often used on the dating scene when instead of breaking up with someone, the person instead just cuts off all communication. In the recruitment space, recruiters have been accused of ‘ghosting’ candidates for years. Recruiters might argue that there aren’t enough hours in the day (particularly when they are recruiting for high volume jobs) to respond to every single applicant. However, in today’s candidate’s market, the tables have turned. Employers and recruiters are finding that with so many options available to candidates, getting them to commit to a role can be challenging.
So what can you do about ghosting as a recruiter?
‘Ghosting’ is essentially a shift in power for strong candidates (particularly those with a sought-after skill) who feel that they want to pick and choose the best opportunities and not ‘settle’. Currently this seems to be taking place more in the Tech space.
What does candidate ‘ghosting’ look like?
Candidate ghosting might include many forms, such as:
- Candidates not showing up for interviews
- Not returning calls and emails
- Not responding to a job offer that they have received
- Accepting a job offer but not showing up for work
Like many areas of life, you can often reduce the likelihood of candidate ghosting occurring by setting up expectations early on, so the candidate is aware of what is expected of them. It’s important that employers are very honest with candidates about all aspects of the job. Sometimes if a recruiter hasn’t been transparent, candidates may want to leave the process but are not sure of how to do it.
Some job seekers exhibit ghosting after receiving a job offer, so remember to keep in contact with the candidate as the recruitment process doesn’t stop after the candidate accepts a job offer. Some advice on how to ‘seal the deal’ include:
- Keep candidates excited about the role and the company they will be working for.
- Reduce the time period between when they sign the contract to when they start work (as much as is feasible).
- Have everything ready for employees to start work on their first day including any paperwork is completed ahead of time.
- Meet candidates on their first day to officially welcome them to the role. This might include taking them out for lunch or checking in with them throughout the day.
- Keep in contact with any unsuccessful candidates that were not successful so they could potentially slot into the role if the selected candidates don’t start in the role.