The war for tech talent is getting fiercer, with technology and software becoming critical for organizational success. It is no longer just tech companies who compete against one another for talented IT professionals. Other industries have jumped into the fray, and are winning a larger share of hidden tech talent. Therefore, it has never been more important to revise your recruiting strategy and think outside the box.
What Does Hidden Talent Mean
You can find pools of tech talent available in the candidate market – but these talented professionals are not always easy to spot. While some individuals naturally put themselves forward and speak up about their accomplishments, others tend to fade into the background. Moreover, there could also be employed candidates who are not actively looking for a new job but wouldn’t mind considering a job change. These hidden talents are potential great candidates whose skills and experiences can significantly benefit your company.
So, how do you build a successful recruiting strategy that would identify and attract good hidden talents in the pool of both active and passive candidates? To help you out, we listed the top tips on how to find hidden talent.
How to Find Hidden Talent
Create a talent pool
During your recruiting process don’t forget to create a talent pool. It is an essential step in the search for the best hidden talent as it allows you to build collections of talent to tap into for the future needs of the organization. A talent pool stores information about any talented candidate you considered in the past. Even if candidates are not fit for your current position, by keeping their contact information on file, you can reach out to them when something relevant comes up.
Make recruiting a team sport
The best hiring occurs when everyone in the company is on the same page and working together to find the right employee to join their team. While managers usually have the final word on hiring, including co-workers into the recruitment process may be a smart strategy. Employees who love their job and the company they work for are the best brand ambassadors. So when open positions are coming up, let your employees know they can spread the word too. It is very likely that developers will know people within the tech industry who may be interested in the job. Moreover, employees who recommend candidates will likely recommend people they truly believe will be a good fit for the position.
Show off your company culture
Having a strong culture that you can show off to candidates gives potential employees an expectation of what it’s like to work at your company. If you offer flexible working hours or corporate events, it is important you shout about them. By advertising your business’s culture you can attract hidden talent who may be looking for what you can offer. The best place to promote your culture is the career page on your company’s website. Images, videos, and short descriptions work well as they can easily grab the attention of a prospective hire.
Attend networking events
Networking events are the perfect avenue for meeting potential candidates as they usually attract different types of people from your industry. Engaging in effective communication with like-minded people will help you to make new contacts and discover the right people for your next hire. Some professionals who attend networking events are looking for new opportunities and by attending you will let them know you are hiring.
Source Passive Candidates for Hidden Talent
Passive candidates are those who are not actively looking for a job. This may be because they are already employed and engaged in their current place of work, or they simply don’t have time to conduct their own job search. None of this means they would not consider better opportunities and move to a new company if they felt it might offer them something more. Passive candidates are not necessarily better than active candidates, but they make up 75% of the available candidate market. The larger the candidate pool the higher are the chances of finding qualified tech talent. In addition, passive candidates are 120% more likely to make a strong impact at your company. Therefore, a successful recruiting strategy should look for both passive and active candidates to maximize their chances of finding unexpected talents.
How to Access Passive Candidates and Unlock Hidden Talent
Passive candidates are not going to apply directly, so you need to use a different approach to find and attract them.
Sift through your talent pool
We’ve talked about the importance of keeping the information about past candidates above. Now is the time to talk about its practical application in the search for passive candidates. Sift through your talent pool and talent pipelines. Many previously rejected candidates could have found jobs and gained more skills and experience. Contact and inform them about the available opportunity. Note that for this method to work, your organization should provide a great candidate experience. Candidates who had positive experience during the recruiting process are more likely to consider working for you in the future.
Meet passive candidates online
Social media platforms such as Twitter and LinkedIn are great places to look for passive candidates. LinkedIn is perhaps the most widely used social media platform for sourcing passive candidates. It offers “Recruiter Corporate” and “Recruiter Lite” subscriptions to help recruiters search for candidates. Facebook pages can post job ads or positive happenings at the company, which could help you promote your employer branding. Moreover, you can ask your current employees to share your job posts via their personal profiles to reach a wider audience.
Establish a referral program
Often the best employees are those who are referred by other employees - 78% of recruiters say they find their best candidates through referrals. Referral programs are especially valuable in tech industries where most of the candidates are passive. Therefore, this method of searching for passive candidates may have a higher success rate than social media. Moreover, passive candidates are much more likely to consider an opportunity brought to them by a personal connection than from a recruiter.
Invest in automation tools
Innovative technology has significantly improved every aspect of the modern recruiting process, including candidate sourcing. Nowadays, recruiters can use AI-driven technologies to source passive candidates much more quickly and at less cost. In addition to candidate sourcing, recruiting automation tools allow businesses to organize and filter candidates based on their experience and skillset, efficiently communicate with applicants, and deliver a better candidate experience. Automated tools can also come in handy to identify resume gaps and fraud. For instance, Employa, a smart recruiting assistant, scans CVs for such gaps, discrepancies, and embellishments, alerting the recruiter about them.