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Don’t Ignore Passive Candidates

Don’t Ignore Passive Candidates

In many ways, the job market offers some convenient parallels to the world of romance, and when we put ourselves “out there” hoping to find a match, it’s always nice when potential partners come to us rather than the other way around. When we’re sitting still, attracting multiple offers, and sorting through them at our leisure, it makes us feel important and valuable. It also diminishes our responsibilities and keeps the heavier burden on the other side of the table.

But if you’re a manager and you’re passively waiting for talented candidates to come to you, think twice. Before you lean back and let each potential employee launch into a song and dance while you adopt a position of judgment, recognize that you may be missing out on some great options and great opportunities. Keep these considerations in mind.

Passive candidates can bring high value.

Passive candidates are happy with the status quo…and so are their employers. A candidate who already has a job (and a great job) probably won’t eagerly seek your attention. She may not even reach out to your company. In fact, she may not even know that you exist. But if she’s content where she is and her employer likes her work, she may actually be the perfect match for you.

The right motivation can go a long way.

You’ve already met the person you want for this position (through a network contact, or maybe at a conference or industry event). But she’s unlikely to leave her current job – unless she has a great reason. If her commute is a little too long, her pay is a little too low, or her advancement isn’t progressing as quickly as she’d like, you might attract her attention by simply offering a solution to this problem. You don’t have to pull out all the stops – just the right ones.

Your candidate hits all the marks except one.

The best resume in your applicant pool belongs to a candidate who’s terrific in every way – expect one. She’s smart, talented, accomplished, ambitious, and dedicated to her stakeholders. She just isn’t ready to bend over backwards for you. She wants the job, but she doesn’t want it badly enough to wait by the phone. If you have an applicant like this in your pool, by all means, don’t expect her to jump through hoops to prove how badly she wants this opportunity. Stop playing games and start being honest and straightforward. It takes two to negotiate a deal.

For more on how to reach out to the passive candidates in your network and aggressively pursue the best talent in the marketplace, make an appointment with the IT staffing experts at Techneeds.