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Nearly a quarter of candidates lose interest within a week

August 11, 2016

Are you taking too long to hire? Stretching out the hiring process can cause companies to lose out on the best candidates, according to the “Time to Hire” survey released today by Robert Half (NYSE: RHI).

More than half of workers surveyed, 57%, reported the most frustrating part of the job search is the long wait after an interview to hear if they got the job. Nearly one-quarter, 23%, lose interest in the firm if they don't hear back within one week after the initial interview, and another 46% lose interest if there’s no status update from one-to-two weeks post interview.

“Professionals in fields such as compliance, cybersecurity, big data and finance can receive four to six offers within a week,” said Paul McDonald, senior executive director of Robert Half. “Candidates with several options often choose the organization that shows the most interest and has an organized recruiting process.”

The survey asked, “In your opinion, how long is too long of a hiring process — that is, the period of time from which you initially interview for a job to the day a job offer is extended?” Responses include:

  • One week or less: 10%
  • 22 to 28 days: 10%
  • One month to six weeks: 12%
  • Six weeks or more: 5%

When faced with a lengthy hiring process, 39% of survey respondents said they lose interest and pursue other roles, while 18% decide to stay put in their current job. Nearly one-third, 32%, said a protracted hiring process makes them question the organization’s ability to make other decisions.

“The hiring process provides a window into the overall corporate culture,” McDonald said. “If people feel their career potential will be stifled by a slow-moving organization they will take themselves out of the running.”

The survey included more than 1,000 US workers currently employed in office environments and was conducted an independent research firm.


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Carla08/15/2016 10:32 am

As a HR Manager, what I feel that's even more frustrating is the job search process. Having all the qualifications and a resume that reflects all the QSAs of a job post and either never receiving a phone call for an interview or constantly seeing the same job being posted month after month. This gives HR Managers a bad reputation. New to the private sector job search, it boggles me to know how an HR Manager hire another HR Manager that possibly has more qualifications. Is there an issue with job security. American politicians boast about how many jobs are available and that the unemployment rate has dropped significantly in current years. It's possible for the rate to drop even lower if HR Managers took the time to review an applicant's qualifications and either have the authority to make the hiring decision or provide a timeline to the hiring authority. The sense of urgency is only on the person in need of a job after completing all the requirements to be successful: education, experience, work ethics, etc.; but there seems to be no sense of urgency in the hiring process. This makes no sense, since it primarily hurts the company be cause the manning is low, which in turn causes reliable employees to be overworked and underpaid because they are doing the job of more than one person, but merely being paid for the single job they were hired for.

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