We’ve all been there, we find a job online that we would be the perfect fit for. You have all the qualifications and experience needed. You excitedly send in your resume and cover letter to the email listed. Then you wait and wait. And wait.
While we can never be completely sure why a potential employer is not responding to an application, there are a few possibilities. Sometimes you aren’t the best fit for a position, you might have made a spelling or grammatical error on your resume or application, or you could be applying for a ghost job.
A ghost job is a job that doesn’t exist currently within a company. Many companies do this, and it is becoming even more common with every passing day. So why would a staffing agency or human resources department keep a job posted that they are not even hiring for?
One of the most common reasons why a company would have a job posted that they aren’t hiring for is to make sure they are building their pool of candidates. If a business hires for a lot of the same type of job, they might find it useful to keep that job online at all times so that when they do go to hire for that position they have a pool of candidates to pick from. While this tactic is useful for hiring managers, it can be a real pain for job seekers.
So how can you spot the difference between a real job opening and a ghost position? While not every company that take a while to respond is ghosting you, it can be a telltale sign. Many times jobs that are currently open will be more extensive and have a longer job description. Jobs that seem vague or all encompassing are more likely to be a pool builder. But keep in mind that this isn’t always the case. Just because a hiring manager did not go into extensive detail might mean that they are just busy, not trying to evade.
The best advice when dealing with situations like this is to be patient. If the employer is serious about hiring they will reach out to you when they can.