What is a Hiring Freeze?

By hrlineup | 02.01.2023

A hiring freeze is a temporary pause on the recruitment and hiring of new employees. This can be implemented by an organization or company in order to control costs, address budget constraints, or address staffing needs. It can be implemented at the company-wide level or specific to certain departments or positions.

During a hiring freeze, the organization or company may still allow for internal promotions or transfers, but will not be actively seeking out new candidates for open positions. The hiring freeze may also be accompanied by a freeze on salary increases or promotions.

How to Respond During a Hiring Freeze?

If you are an employee of a company that has implemented a hiring freeze, it is important to understand the reasons behind the freeze and how it will affect your role and responsibilities. You may need to take on additional tasks or work with a smaller team until the hiring freeze is lifted.

If you are a job seeker, it is important to understand that a hiring freeze does not mean that the company or organization has stopped all hiring indefinitely. It is a temporary measure and job openings may still become available once the freeze is lifted. It is important to stay in touch with the company or organization and to continue to apply for open positions as they become available.

What Are the Advantages of a Hiring Freeze?

There are several advantages to implementing a hiring freeze, including:

  • Cost savings: By temporarily pausing the hiring process, an organization or company can save on recruitment and onboarding costs. This can be especially beneficial during times of financial strain or when there is a need to address budget constraints.
  • Improved efficiency: A hiring freeze can also help an organization or company to reassess its staffing needs and determine whether there are opportunities to streamline processes or reassign tasks to existing employees. This can lead to improved efficiency and productivity.
  • Improved morale: A hiring freeze can also improve morale among existing employees, as it may allow for additional opportunities for growth and advancement within the organization or company.

Best Practices for Recruiters During a Hiring Freeze

Here are some best practices for recruiters to follow during a hiring freeze:

1. Focus on internal candidates

During a hiring freeze, it is essential to consider internal candidates before looking externally. These candidates are already familiar with the company’s culture and processes, which can make the onboarding process smoother and more efficient. Additionally, promoting or transferring internal candidates can also improve morale and retention within the organization.

2. Utilize temporary staffing solutions

If there is an immediate need for additional staff, consider using temporary staffing solutions such as temporary agencies or contract workers. This can help fill the gap until the hiring freeze is lifted and allow the organization to continue functioning efficiently.

3. Review and prioritize open positions

It is important to review and prioritize open positions during a hiring freeze. Consider which positions are most critical to the organization’s operations and focus on filling those first. This can help ensure that the organization has the necessary resources to continue functioning effectively.

4. Communicate with candidates and stakeholders

Communication is key during a hiring freeze. Keep candidates and stakeholders informed about the status of open positions and any changes to the hiring process. This can help manage expectations and maintain trust and transparency.

5. Maintain a strong talent pipeline

Even during a hiring freeze, it is important to continue building and maintaining a strong talent pipeline. This can help ensure that the organization has a pool of qualified candidates to consider once the hiring freeze is lifted.

6. Utilize technology and automation

Utilizing technology and automation can help streamline the recruitment process and save time during a hiring freeze. For example, using an applicant tracking system (ATS) can help manage and organize resumes and applications, while using video conferencing tools can allow for virtual interviews and meetings.


A hiring freeze can present challenges for recruiters, but by following these best practices, it is possible to continue meeting the organization’s staffing needs while also being mindful of the current circumstances. Focusing on internal candidates, utilizing temporary staffing solutions, reviewing and prioritizing open positions, communicating with candidates and stakeholders, maintaining a strong talent pipeline, and utilizing technology and automation can help navigate the recruitment process during a hiring freeze.