Passively Looking Talent – The Shoulder Tap

Passively Looking Talent – The Shoulder Tap

Have We Forgotten About Passively Looking Talent?

The BioPharma and Med Tech industries are incredibly competitive when it comes to hiring. Top talent is always in high demand and will often get to choose from several different offers. As part of your hiring strategy, we should also be looking at “passive” job seekers. Note that the term “passive” only relates to their interest in making a job change, not to their ambition or energy level! These individuals are not actively looking for a new position but could nevertheless be swayed and would bring a tremendous amount of value to your team.
This article will go over why, where, and how you should be looking for and engaging passively looking talent.

Passively looking talent: Why you should look for them

These applicants are essentially the hidden gems of recruiting. They are just as talented as the star candidates who are being quickly snatched up by competitors. But since they are not actively interviewing, you have more time to lay the groundwork and build a connection and professional relationship.

Passive job seekers: Where to find them

These individuals are not scanning the job boards; therefore, a regular job posting usually will not work to attract them. The best way to find passive job seekers is to work with a recruiter familiar with your industry and function and tap into their vast network. Beyond that, you should ask your star employees and respected colleagues for referrals. Referral programs are one of the best ways to uncover candidates who are passively looking and active job seekers alike. To extend your reach even further, grow your network by entering keywords like “market access” or “clinical diagnostics” into LinkedIn’s search filter – you will want to look specifically for individuals with whom you share a mutual connection.

Passively looking talent: How to engage them

Engaging talented people who are passive in their job search is a delicate game. Frequently they just need to be tapped on the shoulder to see if they are open to discussing an opportunity that fits what they have described in the past as a role that would interesting. These individuals might not have even considered looking for a job in the past couple of years, so they may be inclined to shut you down immediately. The best thing you can do is personalize your initial message as much as possible – this is where it helps to mention your mutual connection. Ideally, you should even copy the referral on the initial correspondence or ask them to reach out on your behalf. Asking for an introduction will help ensure that it does not get marked as spam. You should also think about the most effective motivator for this individual – they may currently be content with their title and salary, but are there other perks that you could offer to them?

The best part about engaging with passive job seekers is that you can always be actively recruiting. Reaching out and building connections with individuals at the top of their game is a great way to ensure that you still have a good starting point when a position opens up. It can also allow you to gain information about your competitors, passively.

As always, I welcome any comments or questions!

Dave Murphy

The Alpine Group

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