Needle in a Haystack: Finding the Perfect Job Applicant for your Team

At the height of the Great Resignation of 2021, a record of 4.5 million workers in the US quit their jobs as of March of the said year. During the pandemic, most professionals left their jobs in search of better compensation, humane treatment, and work-life balance.

Now in 2022, according to a recent Pew Research Center survey, those who walked away and are now employed elsewhere are more likely to have better pay, improved work-life balance and flexibility, and more opportunities for advancement at their new job.

On the other hand, recruiters are still seeing massive demand for workers in 2022. As of March 2022, job openings hit a record-high at 11.55 million according to the US Labor Department’s Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) report. Additionally, the JOLTS report also recorded 11.3 million job openings, 6.5 million hires, and 6.1 million separations in January of this year alone.

With a labor market that’s turning in favor of job seekers, employers and recruiters alike are more aware than ever that finding a job applicant or candidate that has the right skill sets and fits your company culture is like looking for a needle in a haystack. A candidate that ticks all of the boxes in your recruitment checklist and fits your company’s budget? Now that’s what we call a “Unicorn” candidate.


The Unicorn Candidate

Unicorn candidate is a term used to refer to employees that are equipped with a positive mental attitude, loyalty, good performance, and even better productivity. While these are traits that employers are always seeking in their candidates, they are surprisingly difficult to find in a single individual. Employees that are dedicated, focused, efficient, and have good interpersonal skills that can fit well into the company’s current working culture are so rare that finding them is as elusive as looking for a unicorn which is where the term originates from.

If you’re a part of Human Resources or Recruitment or an owner of a business that’s scaling up, you know that finding these Unicorn candidates use up your time and resources but prove to be worth all the effort in the end. However, one of the major roadblocks in getting these Unicorns to join your team is the fact that these Unicorn employees are almost always employed.

So what do you do then?


Finding the Perfect Fit

Recruitment involves multiple processes from sourcing candidates and conducting interviews, all the way up to contract signings with the right job applicants. It’s definitely not a walk in the park especially considering the fact that job applicants may back out or turn out not to be a good fit in the middle of the recruitment process so here are a few tips to help you weed through the dozens of applications you receive and focus on finding the right job candidate for your team.


Have razor-sharp focus

When looking for job applicants (especially these Unicorn candidates), where and how you look for them will have a significant impact on the quality of candidates you’ll find. The internet is one of the most popular locations for job postings these days but remember – the internet is a massive space! The most popular locations and methods to find candidates will not always be the best especially if you’re looking for highly-skilled or specialized professionals. So have a razor-sharp focus on your niche and find what platforms the best professionals in your industry frequent. This way, even though there may be fewer candidates, you can yield better results with your time and resources.


People working in their office Free Photo


Have a crystal clear Job Description

Aside from having all processes of your recruitment efforts dialed in to find the right candidates for your niche and industry, don’t forget about the importance of having a good job description for your applicants. Be as crystal clear as possible about what you are looking for in the candidates you hope to hire and be specific with the requirements and qualifications you need. Talk about your company culture and describe the type of person that will be a good fit from the get-go. Taking these extra steps will not only give you a better idea of the key point to look for but also make your expectations clear to candidates.


Candidates waiting for a job interview. Free Photo

Consider “Passive” Candidates

Passive candidates are professionals or members of the workforce that are not actively looking for employment. You may be asking, why then should we consider passive candidates for our job openings? According to a study by The Undercover Recruiter, 79% of working professionals around the world are considered passive candidates, and these Passive talents are 120% more likely to want to make an impact on your business.

These sourced candidates, then compared to those who actively apply, are more than twice as efficient according to recruiting benchmark research. 1 in every 72 sourced candidates, on average, is hired.

So don’t just rely on job applicants who submit their resumes. Actively sourcing for your Unicorn candidates through referrals, research, and cold calls will be worth your recruitment efforts too!


Still having trouble looking for the right candidate for your business?

Let our recruitment experts help you. Click here to know more.


If your roadblock is finding highly-skilled and specialized experts that fit your budget, explore outsourcing today. Get in touch with us to learn how to save up to 70% in labor costs by offshoring your experts to the Philippines with Sourcefit!