Almost a quarter of British graduates hunting for jobs have walked away from potential employer because they had been put off by the organisation's behaviour during the recruitment process.
A survey Reed Consulting of 2,500 graduate job-seekers found that the most widespread complaint – voiced by an astonishing two-thirds of graduates - was "not hearing back from a company at all" after submitting an application.
This was followed by "no feedback being given" (60 per cent), "job that was advertised changing or no longer being available" (32 per cent) and "lack of information about the organisation or role" (31 per cent).
Another common complaint was "long delays before attending final interview/assessment centre" (23 per cent).
Becky Remington, head of graduate services at Reed Consulting, said: "Employers need to ensure that every part of their recruitment process runs smoothly from attraction all the way through to the final offer stage to protect their businesses performance and employer brand.
"With the current war for talent in graduate recruitment, where candidates often progress quickly to senior levels of the organisation, employers need to treat their applicants as future company directors when designing and delivering their recruitment processes," she added.
Other bad experiences recounted by graduates included a lack of notice for interviews/assessment centres (17 per cent), incorrect salary information (13 per cent) and "the interviewer getting my name wrong" (10 per cent).
One graduate told the poll: "They took almost five months to get back to me on the outcome of the online application forms. Although this was the first company I had applied to, by the time I heard back from them I had already accepted an offer elsewhere."
Another said: "I applied for a marketing assistant position and was invited for an interview for which I had to prepare a presentation. At the start of the interview I was told the position had changed and they were really looking for a marketing manager with management experience. It felt like a complete waste of my time and theirs."
And a third complained: "I had gone through the second stages of interview with a media company in London and I was told in writing that I hadn't met their requirements. A month later, they wrote to me and said that they liked me and would like to offer me the job. I have rejected their offer because I felt insecure with their uncertainty."