Monday, September 1, 2014

Passive job candidates are in the “catbird seat”

Author:  Barbara Perone
              Writer | Editor | Reporter | Technical Writer | Proofreader

Sounds like a misnomer, but, translated, a passive job candidate is actually a person who has a job and is not actively seeking employment – and these are precisely the kinds of individuals employers want to hire nowadays.

Oddly enough, the very people who really need a job – the unemployed – are the ones recruiters aren’t exactly clamoring to interview, according to an article by Marc Miller on

In August 2000, conducted a survey of over 3,000 professionals who were gainfully employed. The survey found a third of workers were open to the idea of obtaining a new job, even though they seemed satisfied in their present careers.

These are the people you’re competing with today. So, if you want future employers to find you, first, make sure you remove any inappropriate comments or photos of yourself from all of your social networking sites. That picture of you giving the five-finger salute to a sleeping grandmother at your friend’s July 4th barbecue may have seemed hilarious at the time, but what message does it send to a company that may want to hire you?

Moreover, don’t be surprised if before they even talk to you recruiters have already talked to your bosses and co-workers, past, and present, to find out something about you, the article states. They’re trying to make sure they get the best bang for their buck. They want a near perfect employee, one with excellent work habits, great interpersonal skills all rolled into one happy, hardworking human being whose salary won’t break the company coffers.

Take care, though, even if you are a passive job candidate here’s a news flash for you – longevity is no longer in vogue. So, if you’re one of those people who have been doing the same job the same way for years chances are recruiters won’t be overly interested in you either, the article states. On the other hand, if you keep learning new skills, on or off the job, that might be a way to get a recruiter’s attention.

So, if you’ve already got a job and you’re constantly keeping your skills sharps, you’re in the “catbird seat” when it comes to finding a new position.

Writer’s Note: The phrase “the catbird seat” first appeared in print in a 1942 humorous short story, entitled “The Catbird Seat,” written by James Thurber. In the story, a character, named Mrs. Barrows, often uses this phrase, which means “being in an enviable position” or “having the upper hand” or “having a great advantage over others.”

5 Key Traits Recruiters look for in a Passive candidate by Marc Miller,

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