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In any job market, hiring managers’ ideal candidates are usually active job seekers. Surprisingly, passive candidates often prove to be game changers.
A great example of hiring a passive candidate happened when Steve Jobs persuaded the CEO of Pepsi, John Sculley, to join Apple in 1983.
He famously convinced Sculley by saying, “Do you want to sell sugar water for the rest of your life, or do you want to come with me to change the world?”
Jobs knew that his perfect candidate, who was doing well as the CEO of Pepsi, was not actively looking for a change. So, he sold Sculley a dream and an opportunity to “change the world,” convincing him to leave his secure job and venture into unchartered territory.
THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN ACTIVE AND PASSIVE CANDIDATES
Active candidates may be working or unemployed. Nearly 25% of employed candidates fall into the Active category, and recruiters often fill their clients’ positions by posting jobs and hiring from this group.
While there are many reasons Active Candidates seek new opportunities—concern over the stability of their current employer; they’re ready to take on more responsibility; their employer is outsourcing their position; or their employer is going out of business—Active Candidates may not always be the best choice. Here are some reasons why:
Passive candidates are generally employed and are not presently seeking new opportunities. This group of people accounts for 75% of the workforce.
The advantage of finding Passive Candidates is that, since they are not active job seekers, they are probably not in the process of going through interviews with any other employer. Although passive, many are still willing to talk about a new opportunity. So, to find these people, proactive sourcing is the best strategy for recruiters.
And just like Steve Jobs did, the recruiter needs to give Passive Candidates some compelling reasons as to why and how a new opportunity would benefit them. But keep in mind:
Why Recruiters Value Passive Candidates
How Should the Interview Process of Passive Candidates be Different?
Since passive candidates are being wooed to change jobs, typical interview models may drive them away. Here are some tips for interviewing them:
A Recruitment Firm Can Help You Hire Passive Candidates
A safe bet for hiring passive candidates is partnering with a specialized recruitment firm like ALIGN.
Our experience working with passive candidates through our vast networks enables us to support hiring managers with qualified candidates who are not actively looking for jobs but have asked us to let them know if an attractive opportunity comes along.
At ALIGN, we are always ready to match you with your perfect candidate. Give us a call!