What Is Job Ghosting? 6 Easy Tips You Can Follow to Prevent It

Job ghosting happens for many reasons, including a better opportunity, messy recruitment process, or negative experience while recruiting. By focusing on the candidates and their reasons for ghosting, employers can build an engagement strategy, which would influence them to stay loyal to the company right from the interview process. 

What is ghosting?

Ghosting is a term synonymous with a dating concept. When a person in a relationship abruptly cuts all channels of communication with the partner or becomes incommunicado, it is said that the person is ghosting.

This dating term has now been used extensively to describe employees who go incommunicado, despite accepting the offer on the first day of work.

What is job ghosting?

Job ghosting is the term used to describe an employee who cuts off all communication with the employer, without any notice or proper documentation, despite accepting the job offer.

This phenomenon usually happens on the first day of work, when the new hire does not report to work as expected and all methods to reach out to them become inconclusive.

What is ghosting at work?

Ghosting at work means that the new hire, despite reporting to work, is not present at the desk when required. The employee is evading work and other professional responsibilities. They take long breaks, spend most of their time at the cafeteria, or take unplanned days off without any concrete reasons.

Many companies are facing the issue of job ghosting. Many candidates ghost their employers on the first day of work. Here in this blog, we will discuss six tips to prevent being subjected to job ghosting by new hires.

  1. Be genuine in your approach

Individuals who possess in-demand skills are very selective about their job opportunities, particularly when they have the resources to easily research and find information about your company and your competition. Therefore, as an employer, you need to demonstrate that your firm and your job position would be the best choice for the candidate.

Establish the right expectations upfront right from the very first communication with the candidate and continue doing it through the entire recruitment process. Make it a point to establish a credible point of contact right from the start — it could be your hiring manager or you.

While you screen the candidates to identify whether they are the right fit for the interview, you must also try to find out the reasons why they are searching for a new job or looking for a job change.

You could also ask them whether they have applied to multiple companies or this is the only company they are seeking employment with. This will give you insights into the behaviour of the individual and can prevent or avoid the instance of job ghosting.

When you invest time in knowing the candidate, you also learn where your firm stands with your competitors when it comes to hiring people for similar job positions. You could use this opportunity to inform the candidates up front that they must notify your firm if they happen to find a different job opportunity rather than ghost you and your team.

  1. Be agile during the interview

It is important to be agile during the recruitment process. Agility generates curiosity and interest among the candidates about the recruitment process and keeps them engaged with the company.

Today, the world is moving faster than we expect and everybody expects a more efficient method of delivery of services, and recruitment is no exception. When a candidates’ resume is selected for the screening process, the candidate expects to stay informed about their screening status, as well as the different interview stages, which they need to undergo before being hired for the job. This transparent and frequent relay of information keeps them engaged with the company and avoids them straying away to your competitors.

Therefore, recruiters and HR managers should keep the candidates informed about the status of the application and their prospects in the interview process. Even if the candidate does not get picked for a particular job position, their positive experiences with the company can generate many referrals for your recruitment drive.

Agility should apply to every individual associated with the recruitment drive — right from the employer to the HR executive. Every individual should be agile enough to deliver the right kind of service and information as and when required. This will lead to effective decision making, which will help tap into the best talent, rather than allow them to go to your competitors.

  1. Focus on a candidate’s career objectives

You need to think innovatively to keep your candidates engaged with the company throughout the recruitment process. The best way to do this is to approach the job from the point of view of the candidate. Do not just focus on how the candidate will perform in the job, rather focus on what the candidate thinks about the job. This will give you a fresh perspective on the mindset of the candidate.

You will be able to understand the candidate’s true purpose when searching for the job — is it just the monetary benefit attached to it or the long term growth in career. This information will help you approach the candidate accordingly. Plus, it will help you determine whether the candidates will stay engaged with the recruitment process or will end up ghosting the company for another company that gives a better and different offer.

Be upfront in your discussions on pay and benefits. Also, ask the candidates what they expect and what are they looking for in theory, then address their questions constructively. Their questions and doubts will give you insight into their mindset. Focus on the additional benefits that you will be able to offer the candidate and emphasize on aspects, such as:

    • Work-life balance
    • Good company culture
    • Opportunity for remote work
    • Flexibility with benefits
    • Location of the office
    • Incentives

Once you identify their expectations, you can emphasise on the right things to make the job offer lucrative and meaningful for the candidate.

  1. Create a proper follow-through

The interview process might have ended and you may have found the right candidate for the job, but the selection process is not completed until the hire shows visible signs of positively settling into the company.

Once you have selected the right candidate, it is important to inform them about your decision. Tell them about the follow-through process of getting absorbed into the company. Provide them with a direct communication channel and also offer them alternate communication channels if they face any issues. This will keep the candidates rooted in the process.

Once the candidate accepts the terms of the job offer, begin the process of integrating them immediately. Efficient pre-boarding as well as onboarding procedures are quite effective in preventing job ghosting by new hires. Here are some things you can do to ensure a proper follow-through:

  • Provide efficient answers to the questions posed by new hires
  • Inform in detail what the individual should expect on their first day at work
  • Keep the space, device or equipment and assistance ready for the new hire on their first day at work
  • Help the new hires connect with their peers to aid them to navigate efficiently with the workplace
  • Sometimes, it might be too much for the HR executive to communicate with the new hire. But still, make sure you devise some innovative ways to convey the information to the new hires.
  1. Offer extra benefits if necessary

Sometimes, certain candidates are in higher demand in a particular industry. Such candidates often receive multiple job offers from different companies. If you have got hold of one such top candidate and you do not want to lose them, you might as well offer them some extra benefits, which are substantial enough to influence the top candidate to stay with your company. This will help prevent ghosting.

Candidates who possess specialised skills in a particular domain are particularly in high demand within their prospective industry. Such candidates are the prized asset for any company, so it is worth giving out something more than expected to get the best of talents into the company.

It is the best way to respect the talents of the candidate too. You can offer them additional perks, like flexible work hours, sign-on bonuses and/or provide them with tuition reimbursement as a way of attracting them to the company.

  1. Personalised application process

During an extensive recruitment drive, you may have to deal with a lot of candidates at the same time, plus, the extra workload of screening and sorting the best from the rest. This can sometimes lead you to treat the candidates inappropriately or rudely. Your behaviour could have a lasting impact on the candidate and could be one of the reasons for them to go ghosting as a way of giving back what they got.

For you, every candidate may be just another job seeker. But candidates want recruiters to show respect and empathy towards their knowledge, skills and work experience. In fact, every individual is worthy of that respect. Therefore, recruiters should be considerate while handling the applications process of candidates. The best way to do this is by personalizing the application process.

This does not just put the candidates at ease, but also creates a positive candidate experience. Focus more on face-to-face and in-person interaction to add more meaning to the application process. In-person interaction is important, especially during the interview process. Allow the candidates to ask questions or voice their doubts and concerns.

Plus, provide them with credible and direct answers to their queries. When the candidate is heard and their queries are answered, they feel responsible for their actions. This will prevent them from going ghosting on the first day at work.

Candidates opt for job ghosting for many reasons, including a better opportunity, messy recruitment process, or negative experience while recruiting. By focusing on the candidates and their reasons for ghosting, employers can build an engagement strategy for the candidates, which would influence them to stay loyal to the company right from the interview process. This will reduce the number of candidates going incommunicado on their first day at work.

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One of the prime contributors for this blog, Expertise in Staffing and Recruitment, Content Strategist by Profession. A Music Lover & Traveller by Choice.

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