Inside Look at Why Job Seekers Disappear

A truly scary trend has emerged in the last year: employers are getting ghosted by job seekers. From ditching job interviews to not showing up on the first day, candidates are disappearing without a trace — and ghosting during the hiring process is now one of the biggest problems in recruiting. Ghosting originated in the online dating world, where new technology has made it so easy to ask someone out on a date that it has led to an epidemic of no-shows. The effect is similar for hiring: technology and a super-tight labor market appear to have led job seekers to ghosting. It’s easier than ever to apply for a job and then — for whatever reason — vanish without a trace.  

But what are those reasons? Indeed wanted to look behind the headlines and cliches to understand just why people ghost and why it is happening now — as well as how it impacts hiring. So we surveyed over 4,000 job seekers and nearly 900 employers across multiple industries to gauge ghosting’s prevalence. We then zeroed in on those respondents who had either ghosted or been on the receiving end, giving us a detailed look at ghosting on the ground. We now see, for instance, that ghosting is extremely new yet already impacting the majority of employers. And despite the growing buzz about ghosting, only a tiny number of job seekers who’ve done it have faced any negative consequences. 

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