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Tips for Recruiting Top Candidates When They’re Already Employed

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Is the job candidate you’re looking for not really a candidate at all? 

It’s not a trick question but rather part of reality in the recruitment world. Often, the best talent is the talent that’s not actively on the market at the moment. They’re called passive job seekers – as opposed to being active candidates.  

To be an employer of choice, even to these valuable gems who are hidden under someone else’s corporate wings, you need to catch their eye and then ingrain yourself and your company in their mindshare and heartstrings. But how? 

The trick is to show them how you could help advance their careers and be part of something bigger than themselves if they were to shift gears and consider a job change. Even if they’re perfectly comfortable where they are, once they’re hooked, you can keep gently but firmly and strategically reeling them in. 

Go where your ideal candidates congregate. 

Regardless of whether you have a current job open, develop clear profiles of ideal candidates who would best mesh with your organization, business needs, and culture. Then, pinpoint the websites they visit, the listservs on which they participate, and the industry media they read and follow. Identify their favorite news sources, forums, discussion groups, and social platforms. 

  • Find out everything you can about the types of people who make up the top 10 percent of your current employees and the best of your talent pool. Use this information to develop creative recruiting strategies. 

Develop relationships with targeted talent before you need them. 

Build your bench strength. Create and periodically update a database of potential hires gleaned from current employees, customers, your professional colleagues, and even friends and neighbors. Then, formulate a plan for touching base with them systematically and regularly. Follow up on every strong lead. 

  • Bring people in for interviews even before you have an available position. Or, you may want to start a periodic newsletter to keep your master list of potential hires up to date on company projects and happenings.  

Make your career site nothing less than outstanding. 

The Join, Our Team section of your company website should not only tell, but sell – presenting a powerful message about how your people are valued. 

  • Reinforce your commitment to quality, your customers, and your employees. Instead of simply posting run-of-the-mill job listings, make sure your site centers on content that sets your company apart from all others. 
  • Make your job postings sparkle. They should leave a site visitor thinking, “Hmm. Maybe I do want to make a change … as long as I can go there! 
  • Keep up the momentum. Once people submit resumes, just as you do with other network touchpoints, continue to nurture the relationship. Begin by sending a thank you for a person’s interest in your company, and take it from there – whether or not you ultimately hire someone. 

Find Top Talent with Search Wizards 

By partnering with Search Wizards, you can tap into the full extent of our unparalleled client network, industry knowledge, and the recruiting expertise we’ve been cultivating since 2005. Talent acquisition is all we do, so rely on us to make it work for you. Contact us today to learn more. 



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