Business

Mentions of ‘ghosting’ in Glassdoor interview reviews is up 450% since the start of the pandemic

"Ghosting," where an employer goes silent on a job candidate, was mentioned in far more Glassdoor interview reviews in Oct 2021 than in Feb 2020. ...
Woman looking down at her phone, waiting.
More and more jobseekers are complaining they've been "ghosted."

  • Mentions of "ghosting" in Glassdoor interview reviews has jumped since the pandemic began, company data shows.
  • Mentions were up by 450% in October 2021 compared with February 2020, according to the data.
  • The figures, sourced from UK jobseekers, backs anecdotal evidence that ghosting is more prevalent.

The number of Glassdoor interview reviews containing the word "ghosting" has risen markedly since the start of the pandemic, according to data gathered by the jobs site. 

Ghosting refers to employers breaking off contact with a candidate midway through an application process. It's nothing new, but the Glassdoor figures back up claims by jobseekers that they have been ghosted more often by employers during the pandemic.

On average, the word ghosting appeared in 1.4% of the 127,565 interview reviews posted on the UK Glassdoor site between March 1, 2020, and October 31, 2021, the company said. This was a jump from pre-pandemic data which showed an average of 0.4% per month. In February 2020, the word appeared in nine out of 2,033 reviews, or 0.4%.

Mentions peaked in August 2021, when it appeared in 38 out of a total 1,300 interview reviews — 2.9%, according to the data. In October 2021, it appeared in 23 of the 1043 reviews posted, or 2.2%.

The precise reason for the rise of ghosting during the pandemic is unknown but experts say it's evidence of a broken hiring process. Contributing factors could be record numbers of people quitting their jobs and increasing pressure on recruiters, and the use of algorithmic screening technology

Glassdoor said the rise suggested that many employers had still not adapted their recruiting processes to deal with the disruption caused by the pandemic.

Lauren Thomas, economist at Glassdoor, said: "The pandemic can no longer be used as an excuse for poor candidate experience and employers need to work harder to attract and retain talent as job vacancies in the UK reach an all-time high."

A campaign was launched in September to urge firms to stop ghosting candidates, although employers say they're not the only ones guilty of the practice.

Have you been ghosted by an employer and want to share your experience? Contact this journalist via email at sjones@insider.com.

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