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Why Targeting Passive Candidates Makes Absolute Sense

Why Targeting Passive Candidates Makes Absolute Sense

Why Targeting Passive Candidates Makes Absolute Sense

Posted on 01 August 2019

Did you know that 70% of the global workforce are defined as passive candidates? That means that they are currently working in a role and not actively seeking work. 

But that doesn’t mean that they’re not open to new opportunities. In fact, according to a LinkedIn Talent Solutions survey, as many as 87% of the global workforce are open to new opportunities. 

We think you’ll agree, that’s a staggering percentage of the world’s professionals who just might be interested in a new challenge. 

With this in mind, it’s understandable that companies (and recruiters like ourselves) should always try to include passive candidates in our searches. But aside from the fact that they may be interested in your role, what’s so great about including passive candidates in your search. 

Well, there are quite a few reasons, but let’s take a look at the most notable. 

Passive talent is often the best talent

Think about it this way. If you have a valuable employee that is extremely good at their job, it’s likely that you’ll do all you can to keep them on board. The same goes for all employers and their superstar employees. If they’re performing well on the job, their employer will give credit where it’s due and reward their employee accordingly. 

Now, if for some reason, this talented employee finds themselves out of work, it’s highly unlikely that they will be on the market for very long. After all, they were a superstar in their last role. And according to research, they’ll actually be off the market within 10 days which says a lot about their value. 

We’re not for a moment suggesting that all passive candidates are better than active ones. Some of the best candidates we placed in roles were actively seeking work. But there does tend to be a higher percentage of exceptional candidates in the passive ranks. 

Passive candidates are an open book

You see, while an active candidate may feel under pressure to behave a certain way in an interview or impress you at all costs, a passive candidate has none of these issues at all. 

They’re currently gainfully employed and as such aren’t too worried about landing the role. This often means that they’ll be quite upfront when talking about their skills and experience. They’ll also be extremely honest with their expectations in terms of career development and salary. 

With this in mind, should it come to a job offer, they’re less likely to accept something they’re not 100% happy with. And let’s face it, there’s nothing better than a happy employee which brings us to our next point. 

Passive candidates are happier 

Free from the pressures of seeking employment, passive candidates seem to enjoy the initial interview process much more than their active counterparts. But that’s not what we’re getting at here. 

Generally speaking, passive candidates are quite happy in their work. Although they may be open to new opportunities, they’re unlikely to look for a complete change in career. This bodes well for a new employer as the passive candidate who is happy will have a positive effect on their new colleagues. You might think that this is a stretch but trust us, someone who is happy can have a remarkable effect on team spirit. 

Including passive candidates can reduce your time to hire

The obvious reason for this is the fact that by including passive candidates, you’re casting a wider net. But a larger pool doesn’t necessarily mean a quicker time to hire. However, with passive candidates being that open book we mentioned earlier, they’re usually quite quick to tell you whether or not they’re genuinely interested in the role. They’ll be quick to answer your emails and will be super specific with their questions about the role or company.

In other words, they won’t waste your time. And that in itself, makes them worth the effort. 

Passive candidates are in it for the long run

Sure, you may have turned their head and taken them from their previous employer but the truth is that passive candidates stay in their roles longer. They’re not the job-hopping type and as a result, offer a better return on investment for potential employers. 

As we mentioned earlier, passive candidates will only accept a role that they are happy with and that they feel is the best move for their career. In leaving their current role, they’re gambling on you as an employer and as a result, are 25% more likely to stay on longer. 

They’re sharp

We’re not saying that a person can lose their skills when out of work, but they can get a little rusty. Of course, this depends on how long they remain out of work, but as we mentioned earlier, the best talent will spend very little time on the market. 

Candidates who don’t have months long gaps in their employment will come to their new role a little sharper. They’ll be up to speed with the latest developments in the industry which, as you know, is hugely important in the IT sector. This also often means that onboarding will run a little quicker and go off without a hitch. And anything that gets your team back up to speed is always a good thing, right? 

As you can see there are many reasons why you should include passive candidates in your search for talent. Some companies and recruiters might even go so far as to say that you should only target passive candidates. While we won’t go that far, we will say that if you want to give yourself the best chance to land the most exceptional talent in the industry, then you simply must tailor your search to include all candidates both passive and active. After all, you never can tell where that next superstar employee will come from. 

Need a little help with filling a role? Perhaps you’re not sure how to include passive candidates in your search for talent? Whatever your recruitment needs are, go ahead and get in touch. We’d love to hear from you.

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