Good recruiters know that it's not enough to wait around for active candidates to find them.
Sometimes active candidates—people who are proactively looking for a new job—aren't the best candidates. (There's a reason they're looking for a new job, after all).
This means that recruiters need to be spending a significant portion of their time going after passive candidates. And if that wasn’t enough, 70% of the workforce is made up of passive candidates!
So if you're only looking among the population that is actively seeking a job, you are missing the most significant slice of the pie.
What is a “Passive Candidate” in Recruitment
Put simply, a passive candidate is a person who is not actively seeking a new job.
These are often the best candidates!
After all, hardworking, innovative employees often find their jobs satisfying, and opportunities for advancement can be found within their current companies. Since they're good at what they do, they may be precisely the person you're looking for.
But, they are likely content in their current position and have few reasons to reach out to you in pursuit of a different opportunity.
Why Is It Important To Engage Passive Candidates?
Think back to the last time your company lost an employee.
If they were one of your all-stars, and you gave them opportunities to grow, influence your business, made them feel valued, and paid them what they're worth, there's a good chance they were a passive candidate for someone else.
Meaning, they received a phone call or email out of the blue from a company that offered them something you couldn't.
On the other hand, if you lost an employee who was on the verge of being fired, whose performance was subpar, and who was clearly not invested in your company mission, there's a good chance they were an active candidate for someone else.
The question is, if you were on the other end of the hiring transaction, which person would you rather hire?
I think it’s obvious—you’d want the passive candidate.
And that’s why it’s so important to engage passive candidates. Many of the best employees in the marketplace will take some convincing to leave their current companies for the simple reason that they are happy, or at the very least, satisfied, where they are.
How To Identify High-Value Passive Candidates
The first step in hiring high-value passive candidates is identifying them.
However, most employees who are comfortable in their current position won't be trolling the job boards, responding to recruiter outreach, or submitting applications.
This article first appeared at Hearst Bay