The Job Seeking Status of the Fully-Employed


"This survey is DIRECTLY and MEANINGFULLY relevant to the Australian mining industry as it enters its next phase of growth".

Source: The idea for this article came from a white paper produced in September 2010 by Lou Adler of the Adler Group and LinkedIn’s Recruitment Insight’s team. 

It surveyed in excess of 5000 professionals in the US to determine how active they were in seeking new employment and what sources they used. 

While the research audience was from the US, we know now that trends travel around the globe in a considerably more compressed time frame than in decades past. 

We have provided the summarised version only, but we believe it warrants attention as you seek to better understand how the best talent looks for new jobs and the factors that most effect their final decision. 

For more information and the full article go to

 Key Survey Findings: 

  1. Only 18% of employed professionals are actively looking candidates and applying to job advertisements 

44% are open to considering a new position with a further 16%, while not actively looking, are reaching out to trusted associates so see what is available. 

Only 22% of respondents categorised themselves as Super Passive, ie not open to learning about new career opportunities. 

  1. The early bird sourcing strategy wins.

 Finding candidates as soon as they enter the job market improves overall candidate quality. This strategy requires a combination of search engine optimisation (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM) techniques to be effective.

  1. Traditional job advertisements only expose your opportunities to 23% of the viable candidate pool!

In other words 77% of fully employed professionals who will consider opportunities – Tiptoers and Exploters – will not be found using static job board (or print media) sourcing programs still used by many companies today.

  1. The active pool skews more towards more junior, less tenured professionals.

The 18% of fully employed people who are either actively or semi actively looking tend to be those with less tenure (2-3 years on the job) and at a more junior level (staff and managers) in the organisation. This suggests that the active candidate pool is comprised of a higher proportion of less seasoned people who are not as likely to stay and grow with the same organisation.

  1. Your next Director of Operations probably isn’t actively looking.

By contrast, only 13% of directors and executives indicated they are actively or semi actively looking for a new position vs. 18% of managers and 20% of individual contributors. Therefore an active candidate sourcing program should play a very minor role (relatively) in recruiting senior management.

We found this survey very interesting and believe it is DIRECTLY and MEANINGFULLY relevant to the Australian mining industry as it enters this next phase of growth.

We appreciate that your response to these findings will obviously vary depending upon the size of your company and its current organisational structure and internal resources available.

We do though continue to be amazed at the number of organisations that rely primarily on static job boards or print advertising alone (be this via their own internal recruitment teams or via 3rd party recruiters) who primarily still defer to these outdated methods.

At MPi for a few years now we have been saying that we think that static attraction methods probably access less than 50% of the top talent pool and that other search methods (either directly by your in house teams or by using 3rd party search services such as MPi) are required to access the other half. This new research suggests we might have been overestimating this number for too long and that the contribution of these outdated methods has fallen away much faster than we had anticipated.

Whether you have considerable internal resources at your disposal or whether you use the services of companies such as MPi, we trust that when you are next deciding on a recruitment and search strategy, these ideas will assist you make a better decision.

Happy Hunting.