40% of consultants not using agencies, making it difficult for employers to reach them
The Professional Representation Network explains that & lsquo;passive candidates’ are a growing problem for recruitment agencies as they are hard to identify, as well as being some of the very best consultants in the market.
These passive candidates are consultants at the top of their profession who can find work easily through their existing networks: previous and current employers and their peers. This is why they do not actively seek work through recruitment agencies, job boards or LinkedIn.
Professional Representation Network explains that these consultants are highly skilled professionals who work in a range of sectors including IT, financial services, oil & gas, technology and engineering.
Kristian Gourlay, director at Professional Representation Network, says, “There are of course plenty of excellent candidates that are known to recruitment agencies but there is a danger the agencies, and employers, are missing out on other exceptional consultants who are able to win contracts through word of mouth. These hidden candidates may have the most appropriate experience for any given role which means the recruiters will find it hard to identify the very best person for the job.”
“From the recruitment agencies’ point of view it is important to have as wide a range of candidates on their books so that they can place the best consultants on behalf of their clients. That means seeking out some of the candidates who are not active users of their services.”
New methods required to reach very best consultants
Professional Representation Network says that new methods are required if recruiters want to reach some of the best hidden consultants. They have listed ten top tips (see below) for headhunters tackling this problem.
Gourlay added, “Professional Representation Network runs networking and support events for consultants, many of whom are not necessarily actively looking for work.”
“Our referral system encourages consultants to recommend their professional contacts. It is a really effective way to help recruitment agencies match consultants to the right roles.”
“Recruitment agencies find Professional Representation Network’s focus on building and tapping into these informal networks between consultants a really excellent way to supplement their more traditional methods.”
Top ten tips to find passive candidates
· Ask the consultants you employ to recommend their peers
· When discussing referrals don’t ask & lsquo;do you know someone looking for a job?’ but & lsquo;do you know someone with this particular skill set?’
· When a candidate provides a reference, check the referee’s credentials, as they may be a potential candidate for a different role
· Attract your target audience to your website with fresh, informative content by a respected sector expert
· Engage with potential candidates on LinkedIn by posting and responding to topics
· Create online communities where & lsquo;passive candidates’ can privately share information about the work they do
· Engage on Twitter with potential candidates
· Work with your marketing department to ensure that recruitment messages are included in your company’s communications
· Hold events for consultants that will help them with their career and develop and maintain a long term relationship with them
· Continuously build relationships with candidates even when there are no immediate employment opportunities