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Another No Show? Prevent Ghosting

According to BusinessInsider.com, some businesses report up to 90% of their candidates miss their scheduled interview. With this astounding numbers, we had to ask “Why?”.

So our team ran a recent study which showed 80% of job seekers wanted the job, but did not show up to an interview or their first day of work due to a lapse in communication.

Curious what these job seekers told us? Surprisingly, most of them did not even know they had an interview scheduled or when they were supposed to start working after they got the job! How does this happen?

To start, it turns out that sharing interview details via email can be your biggest mistake.

Inboxes are crowded and messages can be missed. During our research, we learned that most candidates received interview instructions via email, but didn’t see it until it was too late.

To prevent your interview process from failing, ask every candidate how they prefer to be contacted – text, phone, or email – and make sure you use that channel going forward.

Next, be clear on how the interview process works and what the job seeker can expect and if your plan fits into their schedule.

Be sure to include:

  • The next step and time commitment:
    • “We would like to move you to the next step. Can you come into the shop next Monday for about 3 hours to meet the team and shadow a couple of our mechanics? Are mornings or afternoons better for you?”
    • “Are you available for a 30-minute video call on Tuesday at 3 PM? We use Zoom for all our interviews, does that work for you?”
  • Communication method
    • “Be on the look for an email from me on Monday afternoon with the details, is <insert email here> the best way to contact you?”
    • “I will follow-up with the interview details this afternoon, what is the best way for me to contact you?”

Follow the steps above and still have a no-show? Follow-up with them.

When speaking to candidates that ghosted their interviews, we learned that there were a handful that had legitimate reasons to miss, but were too embarrassed to get back in touch and reschedule.

Things happen, bad days get in the way. Before you become frustrated, give the candidate the benefit of the doubt. Shoot them a text or email to check in, “We are sorry we missed you on Wednesday. We hope that everything is okay and we want to let you know that we are still interested in speaking to you, if you are available tomorrow.”

While the majority likely changed their minds or received other offers, there will be a group of candidates that had a personal emergency or had issues getting away from their current job. A quick and simple follow up provides this group of potential hires a second chance. However, if they no-show again, move on, because this particular person will likely be unreliable once they are hired.

Now on to the job offer…

According to SHRM and Robert Half Staffing, only 39% of people negotiated their last job offer. More times than not, the candidate that has passed all the steps of their interview process are accepting the first offer you gave and didn’t ask any questions.

As the hiring manager, it is on you to ensure you are giving the candidate time to think about the offer and respond. Do not pressure the person for an immediate answer. If the candidate accepts without having time to look at the offer, it is more likely that they will feel “buyer’s remorse” and due to the pressure they felt when receiving the offer, they will just ghost you to avoid confrontation.

However, you don’t need to give them an unlimited amount of time either. We recommend a 48 hour deadline for a final decision. Just be sure that when the offer is presented, the follow-on meeting is scheduled before you part ways.

“We want you to make the best decision for you, so we would like to give you time to think about our offer. Let’s meet again on Thursday to talk about next steps. Can I call you at 2 PM?”

While we cannot promise that following all these steps will prevent “ghosting”, in our years of experience, we can say that your no-show numbers will drastically decrease.

Our main takeaway from our study was communication is first and foremost the most important part of the hiring process. 

  • Keep candidate’s attention while you have it – be quick!
  • There can never be enough detail – set expectations and be transparent about the process.
  • Advocate for the candidate – make your process a two-way street that allows both you and the job seeker to reach the best outcome.
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