Job Fishing vs. Job Hunting: It's all about the bait


As someone who has worked in staffing as well as in corporate recruiting, I can tell you that there is nothing better than sourcing dynamite candidates and seeing them flourish. Sometimes "finding" them though is the challenge. The methods recruiters are using to find people today may surprise you and by understanding how they work, you can better arm yourself throughout the process.

Story time: Within a few weeks of a new employee joining the company I used to recruit for, it was not uncommon for a colleague to stop me in the hall and say, “Hey – How did we find [Jenny]? Did she apply? She's awesome!”  For a corporate recruiter, there is no better feeling than instant validation on a new addition to the team. And while the majority of our external hires would apply directly, more and more I was replying to them with, “Nope! I fished for her on LinkedIn!” 

In looking back at our 2016 and 2017 talent acquisition data, I had the pleasure of filling a lot of our open corporate positions with internal promotions (41%). When you looked solely at our external hires, however, I was pleasantly surprised to see that almost 40% were sourced organically using LinkedIn. The bigger takeaway: most of them were not "actively pursuing new jobs;" they just had the right bait in their profile that allowed me to find them. After that, it's really just a conversation around what they were looking for professionally and if my company would be a good fit. Move to interview, align the team, and you're done. Hook, line, and sinker. 

Why is this relevant?

To a recruiter, 40% proactively sourced hires equals a ton of time and cost savings (mostly in the form of agency fees), but to potential candidates, it means that LinkedIn is a real game changer if used properly. You don't have to hunt anymore; you can fish. Simply set your bait (complete your profile), chum the water ("follow" the companies you want to see you) and go about your normal job hunt (or not). This allows recruiters to find you, look at your experience, and assess you against the hiring manager's wish list. If you look like a good match, you'll hear from them. Trust me.

It's for this reason that I always feel so gut-punched when I meet people who tell me they "don't need LinkedIn" because they're "not currently job hunting." Even worse, when I ask them if they plan on staying with their company a lot longer, they say no! So why not be proactive at least? Bait your hook. Drop your line. And go about your business. Maybe by the time a recruiter reaches out, you're ready to make a move, and if not, no harm no foul, but at least you've gained a contact in case your situation changes.

So remember, without a robust LinkedIn profile (one that is stocked with your job descriptions, recommendations, industry and skills added), I probably can’t find you… let alone hire you. With over 500 million users, LinkedIn is a massive black hole to most, but if you have a LinkedIn Recruiter Seat, as most corporate recruiters do, than all you need is the right bait to help my search thread find your profile. 

So please do us both a solid and complete those profiles, add those skills, and most importantly Follow the companies on your wish list, because believe it or not, those are always the first profiles they look at.