4 Signs You’re About to Get Ghosted By a Candidate

As we’ve unpacked over the last two articles (here and here), “ghosting” is an epidemic in the job market. There are more open jobs than there are qualified marketers to fill them, so this means talented professionals are in demand. Once upon a time it was the employers who went “radio silent” on job applicants, but now the tables have turned and recruits are going dark. 

According to Peter Cappelli, management professor and director of Wharton’s Center for Human Resources, candidates have learned the bad behavior from those hiring. “Employers were notorious for never getting back to people, and only letting them know what was going on if it turned out they wanted them to go to the next step. The employers have been far worse about this than any of the job seekers.” And Chip Cutter, reporter for the Wall Street Journal points out “careers take many turns; hiring managers and candidates will both likely end up at different companies in the future, so closing the door respectfully is essential.”

It’s very frustrating to finally get the go ahead to offer someone a job only to have difficulty getting in touch with them or receive a flaky non-response. So is there anything you can do to anticipate a potential “ghost”? If you encounter one or more of these four signs, you should brace for “ghosting” and prepare for Plan B. 

4 Signs You’re About to Get Ghosted By a Candidate

  1. Delays and Slow Response Time. When candidates don’t respond within 24 hours or ask if they can delay giving you an answer, it is clear they are not serious about the role.

  2. Need Reminders.  When recruits need multiple reminders to send their references and the job offer is clearly forthcoming, it is a red flag that they are delaying. They are likely holding out for another offer.

  3. Lack of enthusiasm.  When the candidate has no questions, no excitement, and says “yes” to everything, it is often a sign they are only on the market to see what is out there. They are not serious about the position and are about to say “no” or disappear.

  4. Bait & Switch. When candidates ask for a specific salary, they appear to be happy to get it, but once the offer is extended, they immediately ask for more. If the new salary level is not met, they walk away without hesitation.

So the next time you experience one or more of these traits from a recruit, prepare for the fact that they may be considering other offers, hoping for other offers to come through, or are simply not quite ready to jump ship from their current position. Keep looking for a candidate who is ready to make a change and ready to join your team. 

by McKinley Marketing Partners