In-house recruitment has never been an easy job. It’s time-consuming, drains resources and often doesn’t yield the best results. What’s more, hiring mistakes can be stressful and costly to rectify.
This is true across all industries – although the travel industry comes with its own problems. In addition to long-term industry challenges, the last two years of instability are still having knock-on effects on cash flow, the ability to plan resources, and employee confidence. Those who remained in the travel industry throughout the turmoil of the pandemic and those who have tentatively returned are understandably concerned about job stability and are more risk-averse than ever when it comes to looking for a new role.
When the market is heavily candidate-driven, cultivating passive talent should become a priority if candidate and employee quality are to be maintained. After all, it’s very likely that the perfect job candidate is already employed.
Job vacancy website Indeed defines a passive candidate as:
‘An employee within the general workforce who is not actively seeking another job role with a different company.’
According to a 2015 LinkedIn Hiring Statistics report, 70% of the global workforce could be classified as passive candidates, meaning employers only have access to 30% of the market when recruiting from the active talent pool. Targeting passive candidates can also make the process much more efficient. The 2016 Linkedin Global Talent Report revealed that 1 in every 72 passive candidates is hired, compared to 1 in every 152 active candidates.
Passive candidates will already have the desired experience and skills for the role and will likely be valued by their current employer, increasing their credibility.
This all sounds perfect, but how do you, as a recruitment manager, begin to think about hiring in a candidate-driven market by sourcing passive talents? Here are some steps to get you started:
Leverage social media connections
Experienced industry recruiters have vast networks. They are also skilled at using targeted search functions on platforms like LinkedIn to find potential candidates. And more than just honing in on job titles and experience, they look for more nuanced indicators, like employer engagement (sharing company updates etc.) – a sign that a prospect may be a high-quality candidate.
Invest in automation tools
Modern recruiters will invest thousands in automation tools to locate passive candidates. Recent studies have found that algorithms can often predict the success of recruits better than hiring managers. This technology crawls the web, analysing candidate behaviours, from CV details to social media activity. From this, the AI can determine how open passive candidates may be to switching jobs.
Set up a referral programme
Just like sales, referrals are often the most effective marketing channel. In fact, 78% of recruiters say they find their best candidates through referrals. There’s no greater advocate for your business than a happy employee. Offering recruitment bonuses when current employees bring a suitable candidate on board is a tried and tested way of actively recruiting via referrals.
Play the long game – invest in relationships
Actively making connections with potential passive candidates, even if you have no suitable roles available, can pay off dividends further down the line. Whether this happens in the physical or digital world, you must continue to nurture these connections. When the time comes that you have the perfect position for someone in your network, you won’t be cold pitching, and trust between the potential candidate and the brand will have been established.
Use a recruiter/headhunter
Although sourcing passive candidates is a more efficient method of finding quality candidates, the process does require a large time investment, often years. It can also be costly if you start looking at automation tools, network memberships, and so on. By hiring an industry specialist recruiter to source your passive candidates, you instantly have access to their contacts and network, often established over many years of building professional relationships.
Experienced headhunters are attuned to the subtle signs that a current employee may consider a new role. They can also have preliminary screening conversations with potential candidates on your behalf, filtering out unsuitable prospects and saving you time.
It's safe to say that pre-pandemic recruitment strategies are no longer appropriate or effective in the current candidate-driven travel industry recruitment market. Looking at attracting passive talent could offer an excellent return on investment in the current climate – and working worth a talented headhunter even more so.
Fi at Ambitions Travel Recruitment has cultivated a vast network of passive and active candidates and contacts across the travel industry for over 30 years. Speak to her today to leverage your passive candidate potential.
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