Have you ever been so excited for an interview with a candidate that you switch up your whole day to schedule them in, and then they don’t show up? Interview no-shows are an endemic problem for the restaurant and hospitality industries that’s become particularly acute during the pandemic. In a recent LANDED poll, three out of five restaurant managers and owners said interview no-shows (ghosting) is their biggest staffing challenge.

General managers have millions of tasks to handle each day and when time is set aside for an interview, and the candidate doesn’t even bother to show, (or let you know) it’s a major waste of time.

We’ve compiled a list of best practices that our clients implement in order to reduce your job candidate no-show rate. Read on or download the 3 Step Guide to Reduce Ghosting in Interview here.

Schedule interviews 24–48 hours from initial engagement

There are many benefits to scheduling interviews 24–48 hours from your initial engagement with the candidate. When a candidate initiates communication, feelings of excitement, nervousness and fear come through. Waiting too long to respond can lead to second guessing or overthinking and assuming the reasons you may not be responding. Being on top of scheduling will keep your company fresh in the candidates mind and lessen the chance they’ll forget about you—or take another job in the interim. It also shows that you are communicative and supportive. The way you show up the first time is the way you show up every time after that. Speed is the name of the game.

Automate reminders to candidates

Automation saves all parties time and energy! Implementing automated reminders across all channels via SMS, email and chat ensures they’re being seen the day before and the day of the interview. It’s 2022. Robotic and unpersonalized messages are being thrown to the wayside and viewed as unprofessional or lazy. Younger generations are calling out the robots and craving the personalization and connection. Take it a step further and make your automated reminders less robotic and more personalized. Candidates appreciate feeling like a message was crafted specifically for them. This is a great opportunity to show them your support and care from the start.

Call particularly strong candidates to remind them of interviews

Call reminders are a good way to get in contact with lead candidates, or all candidates, if time permits. A phone call is an immediate reminder of what’s coming down the line. Calls are personal and give you a chance to speak with the candidate before an interview. It’s a quick and effective way to remind and confirm the interview. It also gives you an opportunity to briefly talk with the candidate before the interview. This can make them feel more comfortable speaking with your company once the interview starts.

Make the interview reschedule process relatively easy

We all know that life happens and sometimes unavoidable situations arise. However you confirm your interviews, allow candidates to reschedule via SMS, email or chat, etc. Easy rescheduling allows for less missed interviews and more open communication from the start. Put an understanding foot forward by allowing for scheduling changes.

Gauge candidate interest ahead of time to determine likelihood of following through

It may seem counter intuitive, but putting more friction (but not too much) in the earlier parts of the vetting process allows candidates to self-select out of the hiring funnel. This means you will get fewer applicants coming through and fewer interviews, but those that make it through should be higher quality and serious about pursuing the position with your company. When doing this, speed is still very important – make sure you get back to candidates ASAP so you don’t lose them to your rival business.

By implementing these five practices into your hiring routine, you will see a huge decline in your interview no-show rates. Give your candidate every option available to not ghost you by making it convenient to reschedule. All in all, it’s important to realize that sometimes getting ghosted in interviews is unavoidable. Maybe it was a last-minute child pickup or an emergency at the vet. Maybe they popped a tire or their phone died. Life happens and that’s OK. Show your candidates that it’s a safe place for life to happen.

Vivian Wang is the founder and CEO of Landed (gotlanded.com). She and the Landed team are building the fastest way for the 90M hourly workers in the US to land jobs at essential food & retail businesses like Wendy’s, Taco Bell, Grocery Outlet & more with video. After graduating from Princeton University’s School of Public and International Affairs, Vivian worked in roles ranging from advising European central banks on financial markets strategy at BlackRock and launching the Asia & EMEA markets at real estate tech company, Matterport (NASDAQ: MTTR), to leading special projects for the C-suite at Gap, Inc., owner of Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic, Athleta, and Intermix. 

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