Gen Z Getting a Bad Reputation With Employers - American Society of Employers - Michael Burns

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Gen Z Getting a Bad Reputation With Employers

If you have not heard, Gen Z (also referred to as Zoomers), those people born between 1997 and 2013 have been using their “ghosting” powers to not show up for interviews with employers or even going through the interview process, getting the job, and then not showing up for their new job without the courtesy of even a phone call – not cool. This behavior is predominantly attributed to Gen Z but has also been picked up by their next generation elders too – the Millennials. Millennials are those born between 1981 and 1996.

There are seven generations going back to the turn of the last century.

  • Greatest Generation (1901-1924)
  • Silent Generation (1925-1945)
  • Baby Boomers (1946-1964)
  • Generation X (1965-1980)
  • Millennials (1981-1996)
  • Generation Z (1997-2012)
  • Generation Alpha (2013-2025)

We are currently having Generation Alpha babies that we hope will be a little bit more reliable employment-wise.

Employment site Indeed did a survey of 1500 businesses and 1500 workers in the United Kingdom. The survey reported that 75% of workers had ignored a prospective employer in the last year. This was of all the prospective workers. In that group, 93% of the Gen Z’ers told Indeed that they had blown off an interview. 87% of those said they got the job but left the job on or before the first day of work. Why do they do this? When asked they said overall that it makes them “feel in charge of their career.”

Now before we completely disparage Gen Z, this behavior has cut across the rest of the workforce too. That said, it was found the older the worker the more guilty they felt about ghosting.

ASE talked a bit about this at last Friday’s Conversations with Mike and Tony program, and we asked our audience what their experience has been with being ghosted for a job. Like the UK survey, over 85% of ASE’s 65+ size audience said they had been ghosted either in an interview or by the worker not showing up for their first day on the job. We further asked, by their estimate, what were the ages of the people that had ghosted them. The response confirmed the above. Most were Gen Z’ers at about 36% but following them were the Millennials at just over 25%.  Those were followed by Gen X and then by Boomers.

The shoe does go on the other foot though. It is reported employers have been guilty of this behavior as well. The Indeed study found about 20% of employers have ghosted an interviewee by not showing up for a phone interview and 23% of workers said they had been offered a job verbally but then were left hanging.

So, is there a reason for this behavior? In this survey the workers doing the ghosting said when ghosting, it was normally for the promise of better pay or benefits with another employer. This in turn may be pushed on by the current higher cost of living these young people are faced with. So, employers hiring may want to take another look at their employment offer packages to see if they measure up and are at least as good or better than their competition.

Of course, membership in ASE gets you regular data on pay, even for starting college graduates. ASE member 2023 Compensation Survey participants can log in to the Survey Library for information on over 400 jobs and current benefit levels. The 2024 survey is ongoing right now and the deadline for participation has been extended to this Friday, March 8th.  If you would like to participate, contact the survey department via this form.

It is suggested that employers could get ahead of being ghosted by simply being more transparent about the job financial package at the outset, so a prospect can perhaps be honest about their interest at that pay.


Source: Gen Z are treating employers like bad dates: 93% ghost interviews and 87% have not even shown up for their first day of work. Originally featured on


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