In any staffing agency, some candidate ghosting is expected. You’ve probably already tried re-affirming assignments with clients, imposing 24-hour cancellation fees, or strict discipline policies only to see the same high cancellation amounts and no-shows. We’re here to tell you that while these are methods for controlling candidate ghosting, these are not the only solutions to this issue.
1. Create a standby list
Our first recommendation is a straightforward one: create a standby list composed of 1-3 people who wanted the shift and were available during that time slot. By doing this, you will always have a backup candidate prepared. While it may feel like an over-communication of information, it would be best to let them know that while they did not get the placement, if something changes (such as if your first candidate cancels) that they will be notified of the position if they still want it. Additionally, confirm scheduled time slots by asking candidates for their weekly individual availability. This will help ensure commitment and help you develop your standby list.
Make sure that you’ve set clear expectations for the method of communication as well. Do they prefer contact by email, text, or perhaps chat (if available)? Even if you’ve let them know that you have them on standby, chances are that you may have to request their presence with little to no advanced notice. Advising them ahead of time that this may happen and setting realistic expectations for how quickly your backup candidate can make it to work will establish good rapport.
2. Create a before or after-hours team
A lot of these last-minute shift cancellations happen early in the morning. A helpful solution would be to create a team that would begin work early in the AM to sort out last-minute cancellations. Covering those hours would help put your whole team at ease in the evenings knowing that all the bases are covered and that everything would be taken care of. Not to mention, if it’s your candidate’s first day on the job and they have any anxieties or questions that need to be addressed, it would be most beneficial to have someone take care of that right away. By doing that, you create a positive experience for your candidates and they will always think of your agency first for all work.
On the other hand, we know early mornings are not for everyone, and hiring new team members who are happy to cover these shifts isn’t always feasible. That’s okay! An alternative would be to ask your team to participate in a round-robin system to cover all the hours. Tweaking their hours a bit so they can start early and end their day earlier might even sound appealing on an occasional day and benefit their relationships with candidates and clients alike.
3. Be cautious of strict regulations
When trying to prevent candidate ghosting, one obvious solution can be to implement strict disciplinary measures such as shift cancellation fees. While these types of penalizing policies are typically implemented as a minor deterrent, they can come across as rather harsh. We actually recommend erring on the side of caution if your agency has such a policy.
Firstly, it’s currently a job-seekers market. That means your candidate has the pick of the market and probably won’t think twice about jumping to another agency if it better suits them. Secondly, it can create a bad relationship between the recruiter and the candidate. Rather than letting a negative cycle perpetuate, it’s better to give them the option to say “no” and keep communication open.
4. Get a jump on tech
Getting a jump on implementing new tech solutions into your firm really is the best way to dodge candidate ghosting. On-demand staffing platforms are where your candidates want to be. They want to find jobs at their own convenience and will ultimately choose to work with the staffing firm that will let them do just that. Platforms provide clear job descriptions and matching, easy application, and onboarding for the candidates.
For the agency, platforms enable clear scheduling, messaging, live updates, and automation which can quickly notify and deal with last-minute cancellations. They can be used to enable all the suggestions above: have a standby list that’s automatically notified when a shift is dropped, act as an after-hours resource, and remove the need for strict regulations.
5. Maximize what tech can offer
Candidates dropping shifts is an inevitability, but certain tools, such as a staffing platform, can help you mitigate the effects that has on your business. Think about it this way: if a worker needs to drop a shift at the last minute, wouldn’t you prefer to be notified ASAP? If the worker can notify your agency that they need to drop a shift fast and easily, then you can repost the job immediately, contact your standby list quickly, and overall speed up the time to re-fill the position. Temporary staffing platforms provide efficiencies for candidates and agencies that ensure ghosting is minimized and fill and redeployment rates are as high as can be.
In the field of building strong, lasting relationships, taking the time to reevaluate your process to adapt policies and tools to work with the current marketplace for candidates will help you thwart any acts of disappearance.
Interested in learning more about our staffing tech solutions and how they can keep your candidate from ghosting? Book a meeting with our team!