Thrive in a Candidate-Driven Market

What is a candidate-driven market? When there’s a low unemployment rate, employers need to search for candidates. There are more jobs and fewer candidates. Candidates can afford to be pickier about the jobs they take — and they might be perfectly content with the job they have and not look for another one. In this market, recruiters and employers are the ones who have to get out there and find employees.

To thrive, you’ll have to adjust your strategy.

Candidates don’t need the jobs you’re offering, but your clients need the skills those candidates have. According to accolo, tech companies have pushed the development of this market. Innovative and adaptable companies (most of the tech out there) need innovative and adaptable employees. The article contains this stat: “according to the 2015 Global Recruiting Trends Survey, the ‘best’ candidates, aka your top choice for the job, are hired within their first ten days on the job market.”

PREMIUM CONTENT: Internal Staff Survey 2017: Where to recruit staff, methods of recruiting, what to say to candidates

That’s fast. So follow these four tips to convince candidates your clients have the perfect jobs for them.

  1. Dig into what makes a particular company unique and why a candidate would want to work there. Research the company’s culture. Businesses need capable employees, yes. But they also need people who fit and who understand the company. And to persuade a candidate that this is the best job for them, you’ll need to show them the culture. What is it like to work there? Tell stories about the company culture to demonstrate values. Let the candidate decide if they would fit in that culture.
  2. Be responsive. In a market where candidates call the shots, they’ll take other offered jobs if you don’t move fast enough. Treat everyone the same — with professionalism, respect, and attention. Follow up with candidates regularly (without being pushy).
  3. Check out the competition. If other recruiting firms are attracting more candidates, their clients might be doing things differently. Educate your clients on ways to attract more top candidates. Should they adjust the position’s salary? Provide better benefits? Start an employee referral program? Offer more professional development and training? Be open and share more company stories?
  4. Make the job offer feel personalized for the candidate. It’s all about what candidates want. If there was something specific they wanted in the job, give it to them. What did they say about their last job, and how can you make their next job their dream job? Can you switch duties around to make the job more attractive to your top candidate? Study the position available and go to where the best candidates are — it might be a job fair, it might be online, or it might be with printed materials. Use your creativity.

Need more help thriving in a candidate-driven market? ASJ Partners works exclusively with staffing and recruiting firms like yours. We understand what you have to do to succeed. We’re here to make sure your marketing strategy accomplishes that, so contact us today.

MORE: Not in the Job Description: Why Modern Hiring Practices Require a Human Touch

Steve Isenberg

Steve Isenberg
Steve Isenberg is president of ASJ Partners, a marketing agency for the staffing industry. He can be reached at

Steve Isenberg

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