Ghosting in the Workplace: A Trend Affecting Everyone

While the concept of “ghosting” is rather recent, it is a common term that you are likely familiar with. Ghosting, according to Bustle, is originally used in terms of online dating: It is when a person cuts off all forms of communication with no warning and no explanation. It is as if they vanished.

Unfortunately, there is a growing trend of ghosting in the professional world, both by job seekers and hiring companies.

Imagine scheduling an interview with a candidate, but they are a no-show. You try contacting them several times but have no success. Sound familiar?

We once helped a Fortune 500 company locate a well-qualified candidate for a job opening. The person never showed up for their first day of work. The individual ignored the company’s communications, even after signing and accepting the offer. It is a frustrating experience for us as executive recruiters, and for our valued clients.

Interestingly, though, hiring companies are also guilty of ghosting candidates. There are many instances where eager candidates await feedback from a company, even after they have already interviewed, but never hear back.

Why Do People Ghost?

The unemployment rate is the lowest it has been in almost two decades, according to Inc. With more open jobs than unemployed persons, job seekers have a newfound advantage. This makes it crucial for hiring managers to identify the most committed and genuine individuals.

 Hiring companies may ghost candidates because they simply found another candidate or the hiring manager became too busy. Other times, hiring managers are afraid to have difficult conversations about why a candidate was not a good fit.  Most candidates appreciate feedback, positive or negative.

It Is Time to Stop Ghosting For Good

Regardless of the reason, ghosting is unprofessional. Ghosting candidates reflects badly on your company not only because it is wrong, but people are likely to express their frustration online, damaging your reputation. Give your candidates respect no matter your decision.

Likewise, for job seekers, never burn bridges. If you have the opportunity to pursue a more fitting role, then take it. However, give ample notice where needed and show your gratitude for any hiring company’s time.

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