The short answer is no. There’s no legal requirement to review all the applications before moving forward, and you can always return to the applicants who applied later to review them if needed. Having said that, we do recommend reviewing every application.
Doing so ensures you don’t miss out on potentially excellent candidates who might be buried in the pile. It also demonstrates a commitment to fairness and nondiscrimination in your hiring process.
If you’re concerned about a flood of applicants after interviews are already underway, you can always take down the job posting and repost it if none of the current candidates work out.
This Q&A does not constitute legal advice and does not address state or local law.