Every job seeker’s circumstances are different. And when hiring, it’s important for employers to remember that while many applicants might be currently out of work, many others are employed. You never know who your next star employee will be, which is why it pays to adjust your hiring process to accommodate all types of applicants. And because job seekers who are already employed have unique constraints, flexibility is key to accommodating them.
For example, you probably aren’t surprised to learn that employed job seekers tend to be busy during business hours. That means that scheduling conflicts can abound when trying to work with an employed candidate. It can be inconvenient, but in order to connect with your top employed candidates, you may need to conduct interviews with these applicants outside of traditional work hours. Though the timing may be awkward, it can be a small price to pay for the right candidate. Don’t let the inflexibility of their schedule let you miss out on a great potential employee.
It’s also unlikely that employed job seekers are broadcasting their job search, at least around their office. As you go through the interview process, try to respect their preference for discretion. Do your best not to call them while they’re at work or send correspondence to their business email. It helps to discuss the best way to reach a candidate early in the process and stick to it. By letting them take the lead on the type and level of communication, you also foster a more comfortable candidate experience.
Finally, be agile and transparent with your hiring process. This is a good rule of thumb for hiring in general. However, job hunting while employed can be even more complicated than usual for candidates. Keep them in the loop about where they are in the process as well as your general hiring timeline. Being communicative includes telling applicants if they aren’t the candidate you’re looking for, as well. It can be especially difficult for employed candidates to manage more than one interview process at a time, so let them know if they should look for opportunities elsewhere. In general, do your best not to let your candidates’ minor scheduling conflicts and interest in discretion prevent you from communicating during every step of the process.