Human Resources

How To Avoid Candidate Ghosting

 What is Candidate Ghosting? 

Ghosting is the act of recruiters and hiring managers failing to continue communication with a candidate without further notification. This term is also used in reverse situations, where candidates stop communicating on their side.  


How to Avoid Candidate Ghosting  

You are excited to find the perfect candidate for your open role. They schedule their following interview but do not show up. Emails and voicemails go unanswered. Sound familiar? The growing number of businesses encountering this occurrence has coined the term: candidate ghosting. According to CareerBuilder, more than two-thirds of hiring managers are experiencing this problem. 1


An employer may ghost a candidate by inexplicably stopping all forms of communication during the hiring process. Data shows that over 70% of candidates never hear back from the companies they have applied to.  


To keep your business' image in good light, avoid ghosting your candidates by creating an engaging and responsive hiring process. Human Resource professionals are beacons for people in the workplace, so it is important to have compassion and patience during communication with potential candidates. With most of our world becoming digitalized, it can neutralize the need to follow through with humans on the other end.  


Why People Ghost 

Ghosting happens when an employer or candidate wants to avoid having a potentially unpleasant conversation. For example, an employer may find it uncomfortable to share disappointing news with a candidate if they find someone else is a better fit.  


But there may be a more innocent reason for candidate ghosting, including a lack of information, clarity, time, or authority to act. In today’s job market, candidates are applying for multiple positions at once, and may not even remember where they have applied. Sometimes it may be a simple case of someone forgetting to follow up. Not to mention in today’s workforce HR departments often have hundreds of candidates to respond to. 


The good news is there are practical steps you can take to avoid candidate ghosting as an employer.  


Be realistic with your commitments.  

Do not promise to get back to someone right away or suggest the job is already theirs in case circumstances change. If it could take a while to get back with a decision or any update, just let the person know so they are not left in the dark. 


Establish clear next steps. 

Communicate a realistic, set timeline for follow-up communications. Be sure to clearly define the roles and responsibilities of each party during the hiring process. If you are not final decision maker, let the candidate know to expect an answer from someone else. 


Schedule interviews promptly. 

Candidates might assume you have ghosted them if it takes weeks to schedule a job interview, and consequently may move on. Make sure you schedule interviews promptly.  


Make a prompt offer. 

Once you have found the right candidate, do not linger in the process. Make them an offer right away, before they potentially get hired by someone else. 


Give them an easy way out. 

In the event you are still not getting a response despite multiple emails and calls, give the candidate an easy way out. Send a polite but firm final email letting the recipient know that if you do not receive a reply by the end of the week, you will assume they are not interested. 


Move on. 

If it has been eight days since you last heard from a candidate, it is time to move on to the next opportunity rather than waste valuable time and resources trying to get a response. One closed door always leads to the next open door. 


Free up HR resources. 

If your HR department has been ghosting candidates lately, it may be because they do not have the staff resources or time to respond promptly to every individual applicant. Streamlining and reducing their administrative burden can help free your HR team to focus on business-critical activities, like recruiting valuable talent. 


Enrollme, a digital platform for employee healthcare coverage, allows your HR staff to significantly drive up their productivity and efficiency. With reduction of administrative tasks around managing benefits and Open Enrollment, so much time is returned to their day. Plus, employees are empowered to purchase their own health plans, track costs, and access benefits online. See how Enrollme can become a powerful recruitment and rentention tool for your organization.



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