If you haven’t already realised it and have been living under a rock in recent times, there is a war happening right now and it has been going on for a lot longer than the engagement in the Ukraine. It’s happening right here in Ireland and in every corner of our economy. The war is for talent and it’s happening at every stage of the hiring process – from attraction, wooing, engagement, hiring, induction and most importantly retention. If you’re not already proactively engaging with the passive talent pools in your sector, you’ve already lost the battle and possibly the war. I’ve spent the best part of the last nine years mining, unearthing and coveting passive talent right across the sector and it has a number of advantages, some of which we’ll explore here.
Advantages and Strategies for Engaging with Passive Talent in a Full Employment Environment
In a full employment environment, there is intense competition among businesses and between workers and potential employers. As a result, the pool of qualified candidates is limited, and companies must be prepared to take advantage of any available resources to remain competitive. One such resource is “passive talent,” or qualified individuals who are not actively looking for work yet are open to new opportunities. Employers knowledgeable about engaging with ‘passive talent’ will be best positioned to take advantage of the full employment environment.
To better understand the advantages and strategies for engaging with passive talent in a full employment environment, it is first essential to define what is meant by ‘passive talent.’ Simply put, ‘passive talent’ refers to individuals who are currently employed, likely content with their current position, yet open to discuss other opportunities should they arise. Additionally, a brief explanation of full employment is required to understand the full employment environment to which ‘passive talent’ applies. Full employment is a situation in which nearly all able-bodied citizens are employed, and unemployment is minimal. Although full work can lead to worker shortages in select industries depending on geographic locations, the overall economic benefit can be significant.
Benefits of Engaging with Passive Talent
Engaging with ‘passive talent’ in a full employment environment has several benefits. The most obvious is that businesses can access the most qualified, desirable candidates before their competitors provide them with opportunities. As employers compete for the same talent, engaging with passive talent can be essential to success. According to statistical data, businesses tend to see higher retention rates when attracting passive talent than active talent. This is likely because passive talent is already employed and, thus, more prepared to transition. Furthermore, engaging with passive candidates can be a more cost-efficient way of recruiting. Most businesses know it is costlier to continually search for new talent than to nurture existing relationships.
Strategies for Engaging with Passive Talent
Employers can utilize a handful of strategies to successfully engage with ‘passive talent’ in the full employment environment. Developing thought leadership and showcasing your company culture through social media platforms like LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook are great ways to reach passive talent. Additionally, employers should look for ways to leverage relationships with professional organizations to connect with passive talent. This can be done through collaborations or even sponsoring conferences and awards. Lastly, referral programs can be beneficial in this situation. According to research, referrals are one of the most effective methods of finding prospective candidates, and they tend to be highly successful when navigating the entire employment landscape.
Challenges of Engaging with Passive Talent
Despite the inherent benefits of engaging with passive talent, this recruiting method also comes with various challenges. One of the primary obstacles to engaging with passive talent is remaining engaged until the process is complete. We all have a tendency to become complacent when something appears to be just out of reach. As such, employers must work to foster relationships with potential candidates and keep them engaged with the recruitment process throughout. Another common challenge of engaging with passive talent in a full employment environment is overcoming disinterest. Since passive talent is typically already employed, providing a compelling offer tailored to their individual experience and qualifications can be a critical factor in attracting the attention of passive talent. In addition, employers must be prepared to navigate the negotiation process to secure the best candidates. As businesses are vying for the same talent pool, agreeing on compensation and other benefits can be complex and lengthy.
The benefits far outweigh the challenges for employers who can effectively engage with ‘passive talent’ in a full employment environment. Navigating the current landscape of full employment can be daunting, even with the help of technology and services, and businesses must be prepared to utilize all available resources to remain competitive. To maximize success in the full employment landscape, employers should focus on developing relationships with passive talent through social media outlets, professional organizations, and referral programs.
Campbell Rochford – Turning Good To Great!