The best kept secrets of passive candidates

Passive candidates are like gold. They are hard to find, and after much digging, even more difficult to coax out of their spot. In a job market that’s candidate-driven, with low unemployment rates, it’s left many recruiters wondering how they can dig the best passive candidates out of hiding.

Understanding the secret behavior of passive candidates

Philadelphia-based Yoh, one of the largest technical service organizations in the US and a forerunner in recruitment process outsourcing, looks at every candidate as a passive candidate. Their new infographic aptly titled “Where’s Wald-Yoh?” takes recruiters on a quest to find passive talent. Yoh advises that, “We have entered the era of the “new passive” where everyone can and should be considered a passive candidate for any role, at any time. So what can enterprises do? By expanding what qualifies as a ‘passive’ candidate, it will lead to more positive discussions about applicable skills, cross-training, and better employee engagement.”

Some interesting secrets shared by Yoh on passive candidate behavior could help today’s recruiters better understand what their approach should be when mining for talent. 

  • 69% of workers say that looking for new opportunities has become a routine part of their day
  • 65% of working people look for other jobs within 3 months of getting a new job
  • 60% of adults look at job postings at least once a month on average
  • 53% of working people are open to new jobs, even if they aren’t actively looking

There seems to be a trend here of an entire working population that’s comfortable where they are now. But if the right opportunity comes along, a recruiter could hit pay dirt and convince an outstanding passive candidate to take on a new opportunity.

How should recruiters approach passive candidates, without scaring them off?

Matt Rivera[1], Vice President of Marketing and Communications for Yoh, notes that the best approach is to “never assume” anyone is waiting to hear from you. “If you don’t know them, or do not have an existing connection with them, before you ask about their interest in your job, be prepared for rejection,” he adds. He recommends using a variety of methods and resources for the most effective results.

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