There is a very real shortage of STEM professionals in the U.S., and the gap is not likely to close any time soon. Couple that with historically low unemployment levels, and it is extremely difficult to find the right candidates for engineering roles. In order to fill critical positions, hiring managers need to branch out and deploy new strategies to find the right people, including attracting passive candidates.
First, Understand The Landscape
Passive candidates are not looking for new opportunities. They are actively employed in jobs that are meeting their current needs. In order to turn their heads, it is important to understand what could motivate an engineer to make a career move.
Every person’s motivations are unique, but typically, one or more of the following can be enough to attract a passive candidate’s attention: salary, exciting projects, a path for career advancement, opportunities to build skills and stronger work-life balance. When reaching out to passive candidates, it is important to include language that speaks to these motivators in order to pique their interest.
Get Comfortable with the Long Game
Building connections with passive candidates takes time and requires a long-term commitment from a recruiting team. It also requires a mix of strategies and tactics and supporting those strategies with your digital presence. Passive candidates may not answer your email, call or InMail, but if you present them with a factor that motivates them, they will begin to research your company online.
Invest in a social media strategy that focuses on promoting organizational culture. It is important for potential employees to see your company is a great place to work and your current engineering team feels happy and satisfied. It is also important to build your brand. Promote your most exciting projects and showcase achievements. Finally, include a section on your website that focuses on corporate culture.
Partner with an Engineering Recruiting Firm
A strategic engineering staffing firm takes a proactive approach to recruitment, building connections with passive candidates every day. These partners allow you to directly tap into that network, and the recruiter can match your role with a candidate who meets and exceeds your requirements and who has indicated that a job and a firm like yours would be the right fit.
It is important to choose a firm that focuses solely on engineering because those recruiters will understand the unique STEM market better than a generalist, and talent typically trusts specialized recruiters.