Ghosting – What is it and How Can it be Avoided?


As an employer, you must do all you can to ensure that anyone who passes through your business comes away with a positive experience. This goes for those that don’t make it to ‘employee’ status, too; those who only encounter the business as a candidate seeking employment. 

In recent years, there has been a problem in recruitment with companies ‘ghosting’ candidates and vice versa. The term ‘ghosting’ refers to when one party suddenly ceases communication without explanation at some point during the hiring process. For a candidate, to be suddenly dropped from an application process with no explanation or reason can have a significant impact on their confidence moving forward in their job search. And it will also create a negative impression of your company. 

It’s a big problem

Ghosting creates a problem no matter who is on the receiving end. Communication is key during the hiring process, and as an employer, you should strive to do all you can to keep every single applicant informed throughout. So here are our top tips for ensuring that you are not responsible for ghosting any candidates. 

  1. Keep a Log – First and foremost, make sure you have some kind of system in place to keep track of all of your candidates. Whether this is using an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) software or a spreadsheet of your own design, you need to keep a record of all candidates, how they applied, what stage their application is at and when and how they were last contacted. 
  2. Automated Emails – If you do have an ATS, this can be used to set up automated emails that will go out to candidates at each stage of the application process without you having to think about it. This is a simple way to help candidates feel informed and up-to-date with the status of their application. 
  3. What Would You Want? – If you were the candidate, what level of communication would you wish to receive? It can be a nerve-wracking thing to be waiting to know about a potential job – a quick email takes just minutes but will play a massive part in putting a candidate at ease and keeping them interested in the role. 
  4. Make Notes – Either during or straight after all communication with a candidate, make notes and be thorough about them. These will help massively with decision-making and save you time, as you won’t need to go over the same things again. 
  5. Be Prompt – Don’t leave candidates waiting around to know; that’s a horrible situation for someone to be in. So, make sure you inform candidates promptly of the outcome of their application, whether they are successful or not. 
  6. Take Feedback – Finally, the only way to improve your processes is to ask the people who have been through them what they thought. Ask both successful and unsuccessful candidates for any feedback on the application process and the communication they received throughout and utilise that to improve. 

It is important to remember that for many candidates, you are not likely to be the only company they are interested in. They are probably going through this process with one or two other companies simultaneously in their job search. If you want to ensure the best candidates become your next employee, it is vital that you communicate with them sufficiently throughout their application. 

If we can be of any help to you in your candidate search, please get in touch.

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