Bridge Insights

Ask A Recruiter: What Your Silence Actually Says

Dec 4, 2020

During your job search, you come across a job that piques your interest. You reach out to the recruiter either through email or by applying to the job. You connect and schedule a time to talk further, but in between that initial outreach and your scheduled call, something happens. Circumstances change and you no longer are as interested as you once were. You decide not to move forward, and now that recruiter is sending you pesky follow-ups asking what happened. Can’t they take the hint?

Unfortunately, ghosting in the staffing world is a common (and highly unprofessional) practice. Though you might think, “It’s one opportunity that isn’t going anywhere, anyway. What’s the harm?”, the reality is that your silence isn’t just sending a message about your job level interest; you’re sending a message about you as a professional –and that can have a lasting effect on your career.

If you have decided to excommunicate your recruiter for any of these reasons, here’s why you may want to reconsider and keep your recruiter in the know:

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You Took Another Job

It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking of working with a recruiter as a one-off exchange where they help you find a job. In this mindset, it becomes easier to go silent, because if a recruiter can’t help you, then you’re done. In reality, nothing could be further from the truth. The recruiting world is defined by careers, not jobs. We think about things long-term, so when you don’t respond, it speaks more to your professionalism than it does about your interest in the job.

Why You Should Still Respond

Don’t feel bad reaching out to your recruiter to let them know you accepted a position elsewhere. We completely understand. And while it might not have been a position with us, we are still happy to hear of your success and potential future. Just because we weren’t able to connect you with a position at present, there’s no reason we wouldn’t want to help you in the future.

You’re Having Second Thoughts About Your Career

If you started your job search with some apprehensions, it’s completely understandable why, after going through the whole interview process, you decide you’re not quite ready to make a career jump. It’s a big decision.


Switching careers is a big step in life and you need to feel that you’re ready for that. It’s alright to let your recruiter know that you might not be ready for that leap just yet, but to still keep in touch whenever that may be.

Who knows? If you’re working with recruiters who care about your professional development, they will be able to provide you with tools and resources to help you make the best decision for you.

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You Weren’t Interested in the Position(s) Your Recruiter Presented to You

If, after a brief conversation with a recruiter, you don’t feel like the jobs they presented to meet your needs, you may feel like they aren’t able to help you. It might seem easier to cut off the correspondence and find a recruiter who can.


If what we presented to you just didn’t seem like the right fit, discuss it with us so we can better pinpoint what you’re looking for and keep you updated on future positions that fit your needs. Recruiting and staffing is our careers’ industry; we have relationships with other recruiters at other companies, too. Even if we might not personally be able to help you, there’s a good chance we know someone who can.

It’s About Your Career, Not a Single Job!

In conclusion, communication is key between a recruiter and candidate –and it goes both ways. We’re in the business of building careers, not finding you a one-off job, so stay in touch with your recruiter, and don’t worry about letting us down. Having a conversation where you have to give (perceived) bad news is always more professional than not saying anything at all. Being honest about where you are and what you want in your career can only help us more effectively help you.