Employers Slower to Make Offers, but Students Quicker to Accept Them

February 9, 2024 | By Kevin Gray

A recruiter interviews a college student.

TAGS: acceptance rate, cycle time, nace insights, offer rate, surveys,

Employers were slower in making offers to their candidates for their full-time positions than they were prior to the pandemic, although students who accepted the offers were quicker to do so, according to results of NACE’s 2023 Recruiting Benchmarks Survey.

The average number of days between the candidate’s first interview and getting a job offer (or being notified they were not being considered) rose to 25.1, down some from last year’s survey, but up from an average of 23.5 days cited in the 2019 survey. (See Figure 1.)

Overall, employers extended offers to about 45% of their candidates and 69% of the offers were accepted. (See Figure 2.) Both rates are down from the 2021 survey, which captured offers/acceptances to 2020 graduates. The lower acceptance rate suggests that, with COVID-19 in the rearview mirror, students opted to be more selective about the offer they accepted.

However, those students who did accept were quicker off the mark: On average, they took about 11 days to accept the offer, which is down from 14 days prior to the pandemic. (See Figure 3.)

NACE’s 2023 Recruiting Benchmarks Survey was conducted April 12 through May 19, 2023. A total of 334 organizations took part, including 269 organizations that hold NACE membership (30% response rate) and 65 companies that do not hold NACE membership. The 2023 Recruiting Benchmarks Report, which is free to organizations that participated in the survey through MyNACE, includes an interactive dashboard for filtering data by various parameters.

Figure 1: Average number of days between interview and offer or rejection for college graduates, 2019-2023

YearAverage number of days
Source: 2023 Recruiting Benchmarks Report, National Association of Colleges and Employers


Figure 2


Figure 3: Average days between offer and student response, 2019 - 2023

YearAverage number of days
Source: 2023 Recruiting Benchmarks Report, National Association of Colleges and Employers


blank default headshot of a user Kevin Gray is an associate editor at NACE. He can be reached at kgray@naceweb.org.