In a recruitment world, we’re constantly hearing phrases like active versus passive candidates and, to complicate things even more, passive candidates aren’t always totally passive (sounds weird). The fact of the matter is that our goal is to find the best candidate, and that candidate may be unemployed, employed but looking, employed by not looking, or employed and not open to the new opportunities. But every candidate has a different need at the time and we need to strategize our approach keeping in mind the different issues that we could encounter while connecting with the potential candidates.

Let’s talk in little detail about the type of candidates,

Active Candidates

An active candidate is actively seeking for other opportunities. This does not always mean unemployed, but it can be a jobholder as well. They are looking for other opportunities for various reasons:

  • they’re worried about their current job’s stability
  • they are seeking more responsibilities
  • the current job is being outsourced
  • their employer shut down the business

About a quarter of the employed workforce falls in this category, and it is from here that most of the open positions are filled. The reason being these are the people who are open to a new opportunity, and are proactively trying to find their next position.

Job postings on various job portals are the most common way employers or the recruiters reach active job seekers. By optimizing your job postings with accurate keywords and skills and sharing them on social media, you make your jobs easier to find the right person. However, a common complaint we hear from recruiters is the high number of unqualified/unmatched candidates they receive from job postings, which is perhaps the reason why many have moved towards the proactive candidate sourcing.

And, although you may receive a high volume of positive responses from your job postings and through active candidates sourcing, make sure you have a very effective follow up program in place. A poor candidate experience can damage the relationship between the client and the recruiter, which is a big no.

Passive Candidates

A passive candidate is already employed and not looking for a new opportunity and they roughly make up the 3/4th of the total lot.

The advantage with a passive type of candidate is that as they are not looking for a change from their current job, they most likely would not be giving interview anywhere else and that gives the advantage to advertise about the current open requirement to be presented in an attractive way. Let’s assume even a 20% of the 3/4th of this lot appears to be interested to discuss the requirement this gives us a better chance of scoring a good deal to find the elite profile. Since it can be tough to differentiate between passive candidates who are interested in speaking to you from one that is not, you should be extremely careful enough to how you reach out to people you find through proactive sourcing.

The potential candidates haven’t expressed any interest in your offer so far, so you want to get them excited about speaking with you. The initial communicate should include an introduction about you and your client, and provide some strong reasons why you are reaching out and why this move could benefit the candidate. Inform them why your jobs are relevant to their experience and tell them which part or skills of their resume make them a strong contender.








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