Job Interview Ghosting: Why Candidates are Ghosting Your Company & How to Improve Applicant Drop-Off Rates

Caroline Chessia | March 17, 2023

Ghosting – when someone cuts off all communication without explanation – extends to all things, it seems, even recruiting efforts. Many recruiters and hiring managers are frustrated after putting time and energy into a candidate, only to have them drop off in the hiring process.

The typical drop-off rate during the application process is 80%. So if you have five candidates, you are simply settling for the one left standing. The positive news is that there are steps you can take in your hiring process to improve the candidate fall off rate. Some reasons a candidate might ghost you are…


Your job application is too complicated

J.K. Rowling said, “A good first impression can work wonders” and she was spot on. Your online job application is your first impression on your candidates. If it is long and confusing, you are losing them before they even begin.

Dr. John Sullivan, HR industry thought leader and professor at San Francisco State University reported that at Fortune 500 companies, 9 out of 10 candidates dropped out because the application process was frustrating.

If your application takes more than 5 minutes to fill out, it might be too long. There are tons of recruitment tools available that automatically import the candidate’s resume from LinkedIn or a PDF – so don’t make your applicant type out their entire job history. Ask pertinent questions if you need to on the actual application or send your favorite candidates a one way video interview request to help bring their resume to life.


Your recruitment process is too lengthy

The recruitment process takes time and may not end in a job offer. LinkedIn reports the average time to fill is 42 days. In a competitive market, you’ve got even less time – otherwise your competitors will scoop up your candidate first.

You can shorten your process by:

  • Building a candidate database: Tap into your applicant tracking system which already has qualified candidates in line.
  • Source actively: Continue to reach out to your passive candidates and build the relationship.
  • Cut out the phone screen and replace it with a digital interview invite: Pre recorded interviews take 80% less time to review than phone screens (and you can re-watch, rate, and share).
  • Analyze your time to fill: Take a closer look at what stages in your process take too long and how you can improve. See stats on other hiring metrics to track here.
  • Create a referral program or promote the one you have in place: Pull out some better incentives and send your employees open position job descriptions and ask them to recommend qualified candidates.
  • Use an interview scheduler to automate scheduling interviews: Candidates ghost between interview stages. Letting them know where they stand and clearly laying out next steps helps to mitigate candidate drop-off.


Your candidate experience falls short

Your candidate is interviewing you as much as you are interviewing them. As much as you’re looking for the perfect candidate for this position, they’re looking to determine whether this job is a good fit for them.

To up your candidate experience and create a more positive experience for both parties involved, it can be helpful to establish clear interview guidelines and provide training for both yourself and your team. This could include tips on how to schedule interviews efficiently, how to ask effective questions that result in an authentic responses from the candidate, and how to provide constructive feedback throughout every stage of the process.

By approaching the job interview process as a two-way street, you can create a more positive and effective experience for both yourself and the candidate. This, in turn, can lead to better hiring decisions and a more positive reputation for your company overall.


Use interviewing tech to stop candidate ghosting

At the end of the day, a streamlined interview process is going to win the candidate. Video interviewing software is key to creating a process that will keep your candidates in the pipeline and increase your number of accepted offers.

Talk to an interviewstream expert today and let us assist you in streamlining and speeding up your hiring process.

About The Author

Caroline Chessia is the Marketing Operations Specialist at interviewstream. She loves color-coordinated graphs, hiking in the mountains, and every dog she meets—especially the Golden Retrievers.


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