Jennifer (Davis) Roush
Ghosts of Recruiters Past
If you’re in basically any industry that uses recruiters and headhunters – you’ve probably experienced this. You get an e-mail or LinkedIn message about a job that piques your interest. You send your resume, maybe have a phone conversation, and everything seems great. And then… nothing. Every message and e-mail to them goes unanswered and it is like they were just a figment of your imagination, or maybe a ghost. If this was online dating, I would have told you that you were just “ghosted”, an internet slang term for the practice of suddenly ending all contact with a person without any explanation.
But why do recruiters ghost their potential candidates? The occurrence of ghosting appears to happen so much that Forbes spoke about it last year. Here’s what they suggested:
A Change in Priorities – The company or hiring manager may have shifted what they were looking for in a candidate or the recruiter may have changed priorities of how quickly a role needs to be filled. They could also be overwhelmed with the number of candidates applying and some may have gotten lost in the shuffle.
Vacation or change in employment – The recruiter may have gone on vacation, been out sick, or even left the job.
They are inexperienced – Sometimes people want to avoid confrontation or are inexperienced with telling people they aren’t a good fit for the role.
So, what can we do to ensure we get the best experience with our recruiter? We can start by setting a good example and treat recruiters the way we would want to be treated – by responding back when they reach out to tell them we aren’t interested in a job or already found another role. We can also remain mindful of their time and not expect immediate replies or send daily e-mails inquiring about a job.
You can also move on. If you feel like being ghosted by a recruiter has burned that bridge for you, fortunately websites like LinkedIn offer tools to help you find others that you may have a better experience with.
Just remember, there are plenty of fish in the sea—even in your professional life.