Have you ever been ghosted by a candidate? Have they applied for a job, but no- showed for the interview? Have they accepted the job, but neglect to show up on their first day? Let’s dive into why that’s happening and how to avoid it!
Set the tone –
After over 15,000 thousand interviews, I can tell you it’s important for businesses to model the expectation for communication with candidates. It can certainly be overwhelming to review and follow up with all of the candidates, but for many years businesses have ghosted candidates they didn’t want to proceed with. We need to remember the applicant's experience. The truth is it doesn’t feel good when we don’t close the communication loop on our end. Remember, even if we’re not moving forward with a particular candidate they are still a potential referral source for a friend who may be a better fit for the role.
Build a relationship–
As a recruiting expert, I understand the importance of communication and rapport and how to establish it quickly. Look for similarities- did they go to the same alma mater? Do you root for the same sports team or enjoy eating out? Whatever it is- uncover it quickly because rapport is critical to building a relationship that creates an open and safe environment for the candidate to share potential concerns with you later.
Get more comfortable having some awkward conversations. Ask them if they have any other potential options on the table. (Not sure what to say? Consider language like – “ Do you have any other opportunities you’re pursuing that are likely to turn into an offer? I ask because I’d hate to miss out on you due to a timing issue” Of course, only use the second part of the language if you’re pretty interested) Talk about compensation – early and often. It’s important to make sure you’re aware if something has changed in regards to their expected compensation throughout the process.
It’s key to keep applicants in the loop about where they are in the process. You don’t want to go more than 72 hours without communication or the applicant will start to question the opportunity and the business culture. Sending a quick email or phone call will make them feel valued so find and create moments to communicate throughout the process – particularly between accepting the offer and their start day to build excitement and keeping the lines of communication open.
Setting the tone for improved communication and establishing a safe environment to have the sometimes awkward, but critical conversations will dramatically reduce the number of applicants who may have been inclined to ghost!
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