Does this sound familiar? You were in constant contact with a potential employer - you submitted your resume, had a phone screening, reached out to your network, and maybe even had an in-person interview! After an ongoing conversation about a promising new role, they stopped returning your messages. Complete radio silence. Unfortunately, you’ve been a victim of what’s called “employer ghosting.”
"Ghosting" is a term that describes the act of ending a relationship with someone by suddenly withdrawing all communication without warning or explanation. Employer ghosting is just that - when a hiring manager/recruiter stops responding without obvious reason. While it seems like a huge disappointment, don’t take it too personally, we’ve all been there!
While it's easy to feel discouraged after being ghosted, the good news is the lack of communication is often for a legitimate reason. In fact, the most common reason job candidates get ghosted is also the one they have the least amount of control over - a company shifted their focus. Here are some other reasons why you may not be receiving a response.
There was a change in priorities and a position they thought they needed to fill right now suddenly isn’t as important or has been pulled entirely.
The recruiter you spoke to initially may be unavailable, has quit, or been let go.
The person you’ve been working with might be feeling overwhelmed or they're not doing their job to the best of their ability.
They forgot about you. Everyone is busy, so it’s extremely important to take a few moments to follow up with the individual you spoke to. If you don’t, it may slip their mind to circle back to you.
It can be confusing and upsetting when you don't hear back from a company. If you have been ghosted by a potential employer, here are some steps you can take, immediately and in the future.
If an employer ghosts you, remember to follow up. If you hear nothing back, continue to focus your search elsewhere and don’t hold out hope. If they choose to break the radio silence, great! If not, move on. Before reaching out, make sure you are confident in writing an effective follow-up message.
Find a new point person
As mentioned earlier, sometimes the person you’ve been speaking with had to depart suddenly or is overwhelmed with other tasks. Do some research and find another contact within the organization that you can follow up with.
Some people make the mistake of putting their #jobsearch on pause when waiting to hear back after an interview. This isn’t always the best idea. Remember, an interview is not a guarantee of a job. Even if you think the conversation went perfectly, you are not officially hired until you sign the offer letter. Continue searching for applicable roles and don’t be shy to accept other interview offers! If you're in need of fast cash, you may also want to consider some flexible side jobs you can work throughout the interview process.
Have you ever been ghosted by a potential employer? Share your story below!