Why You Lose Job Candidates

This article was provided by our friends at Mission Recruiting, a recruiting firm dedicated to helping law offices around the country find the top talent they need to fuel their growth.

Why is it so difficult to make the right hire these days? Your inbox is flooded with junk resumes, but you can’t hook anyone who is qualified and within your budget. You may even be ready to make an offer and to onboard a new team member, only to be declined by the candidate they were ready to hire. 

Why do you lose candidates? What causes potential employees who seem like a great fit to turn their back on you? It may have to do with how you present your firm.

Look in the Mirror

Just like a candidate, an employer can lose their perfect match due to tardiness or bad manners. The same can be said about fidgeting, lack of attention, or rudeness. Make sure to dress up for the day of the interview.

In addition to your person, your company must come across as organized and appealing. Is your website unprofessional? Did you send unclear responses? Whether the interview is in person or over video, tidy up your office beforehand. A clean appearance broadcasts an organized business. 

One of the most surprising reasons employees tend to leave a job is a lack of organization or structure at the workplace. Don’t remind them of the place they are looking to leave.


Even if you are incredibly busy, make time to prepare at least a few basics for the interview. First, know what questions you will ask ahead of time. Second, prepare a short list of sales points on the position and your company. For example:

  • “We’ve never had layoffs.” 
  • “The office has a beautiful view of the ocean.” 
  • “Biannual bonuses are awarded on billable hours.” 

Know why your company is the best option and tell job candidates why. You’re still selling yourself. The candidate is likely looking at more than one opportunity, and you want to be the apple of their eye.

A Little Lacking

Make sure you offer all the basic benefits: health insurance, dental, vision, a retirement plan, and vacation time. It doesn’t matter if most of your current employees have opted out of dental and vision coverage; not offering them makes you look stingy. According to a study by CareerBuilder referenced in Fast Company, around two-thirds of candidates ghost potential employers because they found a job with higher wages and/or better benefits.

Great! Let’s Schedule the Next Interview

If there is only one point of advice you take away from this article, it should be this: Ghosting and declines are more likely to occur during a lengthy hiring process. Every interview and skill test are an opportunity for the candidate to change their mind. You should have one or two interviews total. Three looks excessive. Four or more interviews and you will come across as indecisive and demanding. In our business of recruiting we advise employers to follow the Rule of 72: make an offer within 72 hours of selecting a preferred candidate and put a deadline of 72 hours on all offers. 

Get Help

If you have been repeatedly ghosted or declined by candidates, it’s time to change your approach. Re-examine yourself and your hiring process. Consider outsourcing your job search. Mission Recruiting offers help in the legal, healthcare, and executive sectors. 

Outsourcing the recruiting process will free you of the time spent screening candidates. Additionally, recruiters can reach out to promising employees who aren’t looking at job ads. Recruiters and agencies will have their own networks of highly qualified contacts that you wouldn’t have access to otherwise.

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Spotlight Branding

Spotlight Branding is a content marketing and branding firm for lawyers and other professionals. Our goal is to help you create an online presence that positions you as a credible expert in your field, keeps you connected with your network in order to stay top of mind and increase referrals, and to become more visible online so prospects can find you!