What to Do When a Recruiter is Being Unresponsive

Did a recruiter suddenly stop responding to your emails? Are they not responding to you after you went to multiple interviews? Have you sent them polite emails and multiple phone calls for a month, but they’re still not getting back to you? Then you have been ‘ghosted.’

Ghosting is a pretty common occurrence not only in recruiting, but also in life. It’s when the other party ‘slowly fades away.’ Often times this is accidental but many times it’s an easy way to not deal with cutting someone loose or providing feedback. This is more painful when you are far along in the process. 

This can be very frustrating and annoying. And if it happens a lot to you, with multiple companies, it can become very discouraging. It’s easy to take ghosting personal, especially if you were working with this person for several weeks.

If you find yourself being ghosted in the hiring process, here’s what you should do.

1. Mourn About It

Let it all out. Cry on your bed. Punch your pillows. It’s ok to feel upset. You have every right to feel that way. However, it’s important to do this privately. Share your pain and frustration with your closest friends and family, but don’t bring it to your social media. Venting through your social media is not the best option. It will demonstrate a lack of emotional control to your future employers and ruin your chances in the job hunt.

Ghosting may be unprofessional, but don’t stoop to that level. Keep a cool head, even if it hurts!

2a. Send a Firm Email Saying That This is Not Ok

Ghosting is an unprofessional business practice. Sending a firm email may not get you the job, but it might make you feel better. Recruiter Jane Ashen Turkewitz from .comrecruiting suggests sending an email like this:

“I would like to thank you for the opportunity to interview for the role of X. I was surprised, after my 7 rounds of interviews, to not hear anything regardless of my attempts to stay engaged.

Due to the lack of response, it’s a fair assumption that you have decided to move in another direction.  While I am disappointed, I certainly respect if someone more qualified entered the picture.

That said, isn’t it common courtesy to let a candidate know where he stands in the process, even if it’s a difficult conversation? A rejection is disappointing but ghosting shows a lack of leadership and empathy.

I hope one day, if you are in my shoes, interviewing for a new, exciting job, that you are not treated in such an unkind manner. Wishing you and yours continued success as I find success elsewhere.”

Be cautious about sending a firm email. Remember, send it only when you’re ready to move on from the job. Also, it’s best not to be too firm when you’ve only been to only one interview with them. Instead, you can them a small and polite note.

2b. You Can Also Not Do Anything

Please don’t go assuming that recruiters are evil. Not all of us are like this. Sometimes recruiters have no control over this. Sometimes being unresponsive can be a part of the recruiter’s job. Some companies have a “no feedback” policy. By not doing anything, you won’t be burning any bridges. It’s a good way to keep your options open with this company, especially if it’s a big company.

Things happen, emails fall through the cracks, priorities shift, people get hired, and fired. Recruiters have very busy emails and challenging schedules and deadlines. So remember to have some compassion. 

They likely aren’t doing this on purpose. 

3. Don’t Let It Affect Your Other Applications

Don’t start becoming impatient and keep asking questions to future recruiters. It’s best to always present your best self. Getting ghosted sucks, but it’s best to let it go. Yes, we realize that it’s much, much harder than it sounds. Every recruiting process is different. It’s best to simply learn from this experience to be prepared for when a recruiter ghosts you again.

Don’t be discouraged when you’re being ghosted. It happens more often than you’d think, but not all recruiters are like this. It doesn’t always mean that they’re not interested in you either. Getting ghosted can be very upsetting, but worst case scenario: You won’t end up in a company that lacks proper etiquette. If they’re treating you poorly from the start, who knows what else they would do to you.

Pick yourself up and move on. The right fit is out there, you simply need to keep looking. Every company has a different culture. Some may not value communication the way that you do, but I promise you there are many that do.


Ghosting is not appropriate in today’s business world. If you get ghosted by a recruiter or a company, consider it a sign that this was not a good fit for you and move on! Communication is critical in today’s world. It’s a vital component of doing business and anything less than timely communication is unprofessional. 

Do your best to not get caught up in taking ghosting personally, it’s likely that person or company does it with everyone. It’s most likely something they need to fix at an organizational level, or perhaps that one recruiter or hiring manager needs to go. 

It’s critical as well to not get frustrated and carry your frustration around. This will make finding a job even more difficult as your view will be distorted and you will project negativity onto other applications. Rest assured the right company culture is out there for you!

Lastly, make sure you are ghosting other people in you personal or professional life! Be the example and not part of the problem. If e all took it upon ourselves to have impeccable communication, this world would be a very different place. So start with you and make a difference for others.

Let’s have the business world be different! We can all make a difference, be more courteous and professional. Spread the love!

Happy Hunting!




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