We already know that the candidate pool available to recruiters across the spectrum is that:

20% of candidates are actively looking
20% are not actively looking and can’t be persuaded
60% are not actively looking but could be persuaded

This just goes to support the importance of key competencies that are essential for recruiters when headhunting such as tenacity, persuasion and influencing as well as making sure you are getting the headhunt basics right. Irene McManus our popular Headhunting with LinkedIn trainer gives us her 3 top headhunting tips:

Tip 1 – Complete job requirement

It is essential that before you begin headhunting you ask yourself:

  • Do I have a complete job requirement?
  • Are there any questions that a candidate is likely to ask me, that I do not have the answer to?

When you headhunt a candidate, it is your job to ensure that you have all the relevant information on that job from your client. If you are unable to answer any questions that the potential candidate asks you, you will start to lose credibility.

Tip 2 – Mapping your market

This is normally done in partnership with your client when you are taking the job requirement. It is imperative that you discuss with your client the likely companies that the potential candidate(s) may be currently working at, as well as those companies that your client does not wish to recuit individuals from and the reasons why. If you are very fortunate your client may already have an individual in mind that they would like you to approach on their behalf.

Tip 3 – Utilising LinkedIn

LinkedIn is one of the best sources for identifying top talent within your market. When identifying an individual, make sure you take note of all the key information in their profile, this will help you make an informed headhunt call. It is highly likely that when you start headhunting through LinkedIn, more people will start looking at your profile. What you need to do is ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is my profile 100% up to date?
  • What is my profile saying about me?
  • How is my profile selling my company?
  • What recommendations do I have on my profile?
  • What are my key achievements within my career to date?
  • What specific skills do I have that makes me a key player in my market?


By Irene McManus