Almost every single professional has dealt with being ghosted during a job search. It is absolutely agonizing waiting to hear back about a job in which you have invested both time and emotions. Even worse is the pit in your stomach when you realize you will never hear back. If you find yourself in this situation, you need to understand why it happens and what you can do about it.
Understand Why It Happens
While we wish no one ever had to deal with being ghosted by a prospective employer, it is unavoidable. Especially in today’s market, hiring managers are receiving thousands of applications for a single position. Unfortunately, it means they aren’t able to follow up with each and every applicant.
If you’re being ghosted farther along in the hiring process, that certainly leaves a stronger impression. However, you have to understand that a company’s only objective is to fill their open position, so that is where they are focusing all of their energy. On the plus side, it does mean you have a bit more leverage.
What You Can Do About It
Once you’ve been in contact with a company during a hiring process (meaning you’ve had an interview or two), there are a few things you can do after being ghosted. Career Strategist Bob McIntosh recently recommended following up with your primary contact up to three times. Keep your follow-ups short, professional, and positive. If you haven’t heard back after the third attempt, it’s time to move on.
Further ghost-proof your job search by keeping an open mind. Don’t limit yourself to the one position you’re interviewing for. Continue applying for jobs and accepting interviews as they come your way. Most importantly, don’t take ghosting personally. Being ghosted during your job search is lamentably an inevitable part of the modern hiring process. Finally, when you eventually climb the corporate ladder, you’ll have the opportunity to break the cycle!