Recruiting in a Candidate Driven Market

Recruiting in a Candidate Driven Market

In general, there are two types of job markets, a Candidate Driven Market and an Employer Driven Market. 

What is a Candidate Driven Market?

The hiring market is just that, driven by candidates, and it refers to a job market where candidates—not companies—have the upper hand. In this type of market, jobs are plentiful, but suitable candidates are not, and it usually happens during or just after an economic recovery or in any situation where there is rising demand for talent. Companies compete for top talent in their industries, creating a surge of higher salaries, better benefits, and other negotiables to attract and retain top-tier candidates.


What is an Employer Driven Market?

Markets driven by employers exist when jobs are scarce, and job-seekers are abundant. Employers are at an advantage since they have many qualified candidates to choose from. They also have a chance to lower pay and get great talent on board at a bargain. This leads to a highly competitive recruitment landscape and generally occurs when the economy is slow, and unemployment is high. 


Ok, tell me more…

Hiring is a battlefield. If it’s not top talent competing to be seen by employers, it’s employers competing to hire top talent. 

While an Employer Driven Market may cater to businesses’ bottom lines, it leads to the risky endeavor of hiring quickly.  Bad hires, high turnover rates, and dissatisfied employees will inevitably follow. At Glassdoor, senior economist Daniel Zhao states that “Workers at short-staffed businesses face increasing challenges and harder working conditions. This vicious cycle is definitely a real phenomenon. Labor shortages are a double whammy for employers. It’s not just hard to hire but hard to retain.”  

In a Candidate Driven Market, there is pressure to find that perfect candidate yesterday, and it’s easy to forget about candidate experience. Your best asset as an employer is to view candidates as long-term investments; the happier the employees, the greater your ROI. This must happen from the very first interaction and continue through an employee’s entire career.

We recently interviewed Tianna Johnson, Head of Talent Operations at Notion on this very idea and what it truly takes to foster an inclusive talent culture of excellence and curate an enjoyable experience for candidates who apply to join your company. Read Creating a Candidate Experience that is Inclusive, Transparent, and Innovative (which we all know is fundamental to standing out in a candidate’s job market) for ideas you can apply today.


The Current Market 

2021 was dominated by a Candidate Driven Market. Right now, candidates can be SUPER picky. This means NO settling. Job seekers can, just about, name their price and wait for a  match, even if they don’t possess every qualification. Candidates no longer have to say yes to a ‘stretch’ salary – and truth be told, they won’t. 

Potential employees, independent contractors, and the like can be selective about company culture, employer-provided benefits, seek remote positions, and the highly sought-after work/life balance. Candidates are in a position to easily say no to an opportunity that doesn’t check all their boxes. And they are now, more than ever, seeking remote opportunities and are very concerned about company culture. 

This Candidate Driven Market has also begun to produce a concerning shift impacting the recruiting and hiring process.

  • Candidates are dropping off more and more after introductions and interviews. Some are not giving any type of courtesy notification to Recruiters or Hiring Managers. 
  • More candidates are not showing up for interviews. 
  • Some employers are banking on one candidate.  They are pausing a search and then find themselves unable to make the hire – leaving them with no other candidates to choose from. 


Trending Now: Employee Engagement

Our first-hand experience and data-backed research forecasting employee engagement trends in 2022, gives us a clear idea of current trends, what to look for in the coming years, and furthermore, 11 clear steps to help incorporate these insights into your recruiting process.

The most important takeaways: 

  • We need human connection now more than ever.
  • Anxiety is at record levels, and organizations need to address it. 
  • Recognition is hugely important in leveling up engagement. 
  • Retaining your talent is necessary for companies to survive.

Considering the aforementioned data and trends we have witnessed first-hand, we’d like to offer some *hot tips* for the current job market. 


Best Practices for Recruiters & Employers in a Candidate Driven Market

Candidate-favoring markets tend to leave employers with much less bargaining power. Although this type of market can be challenging for employers, especially when it comes to the uptick in demands for higher salaries and better benefits and perks, there’s definitely an upside. This type of job market is a tremendous opportunity to consider recruiting in a different way in order to attract the talent you need to grow your business. Take the time to optimize an existing recruiting process – or perhaps it is the perfect time to create one. 

1. Take Time to Reevaluate your Job Descriptions 

  • Create a Compelling Job Description
  • Highlight the company values, culture, purpose, and mission
  • Be transparent – about salary, benefits, and as much else as possible
  • Be concise about the job requirements

Candidates appreciate employers that are transparent and promote the company and not just the job. Candidates are beginning to look for work that is so much more. Make it obvious that you care about and promote policies that speak to the employer’s well-being. That being said, remain clear, focused, and concise about salary, offerings/perks, benefits, expectations, and other job essentials/duties. 

Once a candidate knows they could be happy and make a real impact with a company, they will then continue on to the job itself. 

2. Job Postings

Post the open role on multiple platforms. Think large and small. There are benefits to both widely-known sources and niche job boards. 

With potential candidates on a seemingly infinite number of job sites and social media channels, it’s important that you post your job opening in several locations, especially if the role is remote. 

3. Make the Recruiting Process Personal

These values not only apply to job descriptions but also to a complete recruitment process. 

  • Include personal touches – remember the human in the applicant
  • Stay transparent 
  • Be organized – keep track of all your candidates
  • Keep candidates informed at all times
  • Appreciate every applicant’s time, even if they are not a fit, and let them know as soon as you can that they are not the right fit and why so they can move onto another company that will align with what they have to offer.  

We always recommend including a link to the direct job application or landing page in the job description and using an Applicant Tracking System (ATS)  to consolidate all of your sources. 

4. Efficiency is Key

Ensure your candidate-vetting process is thorough—but quick. One of the fastest ways to lose great candidates is a slow hiring process. “If you’re aiming to hire A-players, hire them with speed and decisiveness. You have to keep in mind that other companies are seeking the same top-caliber talents.”  In fact, even when we’re not in a Candidate Driven Market, “39% of job candidates say 7-14 days is too long.” 

IRL Idea from an Avra Talent candidate 

“If you are interested, a call before all the automated stuff is a good idea because otherwise, I don’t want to go through all the hoops! Too many people are hiring for that!”

5. Remember the Ol’ “There’s More Fish in the Sea” Adage

Try not to bank on a single candidate. Our advice is to keep your role open until that contract is signed AND a start date is on the calendar! It’s always unfortunate to see a hiring manager place all of their cards on one candidate, close the role, find themselves unable to make the hire, and then have no other candidates to continue the conversation with. 

6. Enlist Expert Help

If all of this is making you count the minutes in the day that you don’t have, find a company you can trust with this need. Have them present you with the candidates who fit your specifications. This way, you end up interviewing only those who are highly qualified for the roles you need to fill. Lucky for you, Avra Talent does just that. We help scaling startups make key hires. 

7. Most Importantly

When a candidate feels they are compensated fairly, given flexibility, and are treated as a valued asset, they are much more likely to stay with their employer long-term. 

For the times you need qualified people for any position in your company, it truly doesn’t matter what type of job market it is. What matters most is you find the right person for the right seat. All you have to do is to adjust to the market you’re currently in to get them.

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