Job Search


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Ghosting is the practice of ending a personal relationship with someone by suddenly and without explanation withdrawing from all communication.

While this term is usually used in reference to dating and other personal relationships, ghosting has become an issue in professional life too; specifically, in the areas of job search and recruiting.

Recently. we asked fashion industry professionals if they have ever been ghosted by an employer or agency recruiter and how that experience impacted their relationship with the brand/company.  On the flipside, we asked fashion industry job seekers if they had ever ghosted an employer or agency recruiter. With over 1000 responses, we learned the following…


Shockingly, 93% of fashion industry job seekers claim they have been ghosted by a direct employer or agency recruiter.

We defined ghosting as “the ending of a personal relationship” but suspect that some of the respondents who claimed they were ghosted just didn’t hear back from submitting an application. The actual percentage of job seekers who were ghosted is probably a little lower than 93%.

Candidates that claim to have been ghosted by recruiters


Of the 1000+ respondents…

…53% claimed that they were less likely to purchase a company’s products or shop at their stores after being ghosted.

…32% claimed they were likely to spread their dissatisfaction with the ghosting companies products or stores with their friends and family.

…74% claimed they were more likely to give negative reviews of the ghosting company or company’s culture to industry peers.

Ultimately, companies that ghost potential hires risk selling less product and attracting less talent. This isn’t just our conclusion, Virgin Media actually studied this a few years back.

Job seeker impact on being ghosted recruiters


Almost a third of fashion industry job seekers claimed to have ghosted an employer. Of those, over 16% claimed they did so on purpose.

Ghosting an employer or agency recruiter usually translates into job seekers not showing up for an interview, not responding to an offer letter and even not showing up for the first day of work.

Typically, younger job seekers ghost employers more than older candidates. Ghosting by job seekers has a tendency to increase when unemployment rates are low.

While we will be conducting a recruiter version of this survey in the coming weeks, anecdotally, we know that recruiters are very likely to remember candidates that ghosted them.

Candidates that claim to have ghosted employers & agency recruiters


Ghosting, whether it is done by a recruiter or a job seeker, is just plain rude. With respect to companies, it can hurt sales and impact their ability to attract good talent. With respect to job seekers, ghosting burns bridges and in an industry as small and incestuous as ours, most people cannot afford to burn bridges.

Chris Kidd is the owner of,,, and

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