Why Passive Superstar Candidates Tend to Avoid Online Job Ads

In this day and age, it is often common practice for some companies to run an online job advertisement when they want to fill an open position.

However, unless companies take a closer look at their specific needs and analyze the situation thoroughly, running an online job ad can be counterproductive to their search for talent.

That’s because passive superstar candidates, as a general rule, tend to avoid online job ads.

This can be partly explained by examining the differences between active job seekers and passive candidates.  Active job seekers may or may not be employed, but in many cases, they are not.  Or, they may be underemployed or unhappy in their current career situation.  As a result, they are constantly looking for a new job (understandably), making them much more likely to see the job ad and apply for it.

No matter what state the economy is in, there are generally more active job seekers than there are passive candidates.

On the flip side of the coin, below are four reasons why passive superstar candidates will tend to not respond to an online job ad:

  1. They’re basically happy where they’re working now (although they would make a strategic move for the right opportunity).
  2. They’re too busy at their current position to actually conduct an active job search.
  3. They don’t know who can see the fact that they’re applying.
  4. They don’t want to risk the confidentiality of their search being breached at any point in the process.

Top candidates are not alone.  Some recruiters will also shy away from working a job that’s being advertised online by the company at the same time, and there is one main reason for this:

If the position is being posted online in the form of an ad, there’s no real urgency to fill the position on the part of the company.

Why is that?  Because hiring a candidate by posting a job online is a more time-consuming process.  Candidates must see the ad and respond to it.  Then company officials must receive their submissions, sort through them, and identify the candidates they want to interview.  Conversely, when there is urgency tied to the filling of a position, company officials aren’t willing to wait for such a process.

Executive recruiters specialize in recruiting passive superstar candidates for job openings that need to be filled in an urgent fashion.  Their ability to do that and to do it consistently represents the value that recruiters provide to companies.

In our nearly 18 years of experience in the search industry, the majority of open positions are filled with the best candidates by active recruitment practices, not through passive job advertisements.  The very best candidates are also found through these practices and not by relying upon job ads.

In fact, according to a recent Analysis of Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey (CPS), workers who change jobs appear to have been sought out and recruited by the new employers.  In other words, most of the job switchers in this country are not actively looking for a new job, but they’re still taking advantage of other employment opportunities.  Click here to read more about this study.

If your company has a high-level, important job opening that needs to be filled quickly with the best candidate in the marketplace, think twice before posting that opening online in the form of an advertisement.

It could sabotage your search before it gets started . . . without you even knowing it.

We help support careers in one of two ways: 1. By helping to find the right opportunity when the time is right, and 2. By helping to recruit top talent for the critical needs of organizations.  If this is something you would like to explore further, please send an email to stacy@thevetrecruiter.com.