Ghosting Tech Job Candidates: Don’t Be Haunted By Your Failure to Communicate

Even if your tech company has a stellar image and wonderful culture, ghosting technical job candidates can destroy your reputation as a tech recruiter. Leaving potential hires in the lurch, desperately hoping for an email, voicemail, or smoke signal from you will leave them with a justifiably lousy impression of how much your tech recruiting company respects candidates and employees. And it is an impression that they are sure to share far and wide with other talented, sought-after tech candidates who may think twice about an opportunity to work with you.

The term “ghosting” first arose in the context of personal relationships. But the bitterness and disappointment that follows such disappearing acts in romance can be just as powerful in business. In fact, the impact can be much more profound and longer-lasting.

What is Ghosting Tech Job Candidates in the Hiring Process?

Ghosting in the context of tech recruiting and hiring can happen at any point after a candidate first submits a resume and cover letter. But the farther someone is in the hiring process, the more problematic ghosting becomes.

Most candidates in the tech sector who respond to a job listing don’t expect any type of initial response beyond perhaps a confirmation that your company received their materials. They know that every IT job posting gets a ton of applications. They get that a tech hiring manager won’t have the time or inclination to send out hundreds or thousands of “thanks, but no thanks” emails. They understand that once they hit “Send,” it may be the last interaction between themselves and your company about the position.

But once you do respond to a candidate, either seeking more information, wanting to arrange for a screening interview, or scheduling a substantive interview, the stakes become much higher. Now, the potential hire believes they have a real shot at the job. As you raise their hopes, you also raise their expectations in terms of communication.

How Ghosting Tech Job Candidates Can Destroy Your Reputation

If a candidate puts the time and effort into preparing for and participating in an interview, they justifiably expect you to acknowledge their commitment, even if you won’t be making them a job offer. A simple response to let an interviewee know they are no longer under consideration shows you respect them. Similarly, if your hiring process unexpectedly takes longer than anticipated, advising candidates who remain in contention of that fact is an appreciated and thoughtful gesture that reflects well on how you treat others.

Conversely, radio silence at such a juncture comes across as a sign not only of disinterest but also of profound disrespect. It leaves candidates with the impression that you do not value the people who work for you. If you can’t take the time to write a two-sentence email that will allow a finalist for a job to move on with other opportunities, the candidate may think, your company probably treats existing employees with the same dismissiveness.

And they won’t keep that impression to themselves.

Job Seekers Share Their Experiences Online – And Other Job Seekers Listen

Tech company hiring managers that ghost candidates may falsely presume that it’s only an issue between the company and the candidate. But the job seeker likely thinks differently. The tech community may be large, but the online world they live in is small. Just as people share their work experiences on sites such as Glassdoor, so too do those looking for work.

A survey by the Human Capital Institute found that:

  • Sixty percent of job candidates report a negative experience with the employers they engage with.
  • Seventy-two percent of job seekers report sharing their negative experiences online.
  • Fifty-five percent of job seekers report avoiding certain companies after reading negative reviews by other candidates.

Let GTN Help Your Company with its Technical Staffing Needs

Word travels fast if you have a habit of ghosting job candidates. If you’re not careful, you could find your company on the receiving end of the silent treatment over and over again. You can avoid that fate by developing and implementing a strategy for consistent communication with candidates at various stages in the hiring lifecycle. That way, ghosting won’t come back to haunt you.

If you need assistance with technical staffing and recruiting, GTN Technical Staffing provides scalable staffing solutions encompassing SOW, staff augmentation, and direct hire placement for Fortune 2000 companies. Contact us today to learn how we can help you.

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