News 20/04/2021 by "Rachel McCarthy"

Recruitment Ghosting | It’s Not Proper in the Professional World

recruitment ghosting

A few months into 2021 and the market is thriving. There are jobs aplenty and candidates too few. There’s a buzz in the air. Everyone is quick to action, and jobs are being filled in a snap. 

This is a thrilling period for recruiters. It’s a delight to see happy candidates in a bountiful job market. But with high demand can come a relaxing of good manners.

Ghosting is on the rise, and it needs to be said that what’s commonplace in the modern dating scene is less appropriate in the job market. 

Recruitment Ghosting in the Professional World

Working in recruitment, we get used to being at the mercy of the market fluxes. When jobs are scarce, we are valued partners, and when they are plenty, the treatment tends to change. We get it. With high demand comes many, many jobs processes to juggle. 

So what is recruitment ghosting? What’s acceptable, and what’s risking your reputation in the market?

By definition, ghosting is “the practice of ending a personal relationship with someone by suddenly and without explanation withdrawing from all communication.” In recruitment, this is common, so it’s best to think of it in levels.


Level one:

A candidate comes in for a general interview with an agency and then doesn’t answer calls or contact attempts because they’ve found a job. 


Level two:

An interview has been lined up for someone at a company, and then they fail to show up or respond to any communication. 


Level three:

Participating in interviews with a company and then ghosting with no explanation. 

While level one can be frustrating, it’s understandable. A lot of people are out there meeting a lot of agencies and companies. If you have no skin in the game, of course, the pressure to explain the silence is less. It’s not ideal, but you’ll certainly be forgiven. 

Level two and three, however, are where relationships can begin to crumble. Everyone understands that things can happen. If you are a no show for an interview with a company, you’ll usually be given the benefit of the doubt. But going through the interview process and then ghosting midway or at the final stages reflects very poorly on a person’s character. This automatically gives a red flag. Not just on the recruiter’s database but with the client themselves. Not an ideal situation when you may need to go back into the recruitment market in the future.  

How to keep your reputation through exhaustive recruitment processes

Understanding that the market is moving quickly right now, and many people are involved in many processes, it’s understandable that keeping up with communication is hard. 

If picking up the phone is genuinely too much and sending tailored communication to everyone feels like a burden, we recommend developing an email template. Track the processes that you’re involved in. Keep contact information for them all, and if you find yourself off the market or uninterested in progressing further, you can simply copy, paste and send. This is an easy way to avoid recruitment ghosting and it only takes a few minutes.

The level of information you share should be levelled with the time and energy invested in you. If you’re pulling out before ever meeting the company, a simple “Thanks, but I’ve just accepted something else” is fine. If you’ve been involved in a process and you’re pulling out, it would be courteous to extend thanks to those involved and perhaps provide some feedback. 

Just remember, while recruiters may be tenacious and sometimes a little overexcited, we’re like this because it helps you. Learning everything about what decisions you make and why helps us to discern what you’re going to want to hear about in the future. 


Keeping up communication keeps dedicated hunters out there working on your behalf. If you want a recruiter on your side, get in contact with the team at Launch today.