How to Find Untapped Talent

Hidden Workers: How to Find Untapped Talent

Are you looking for top talent? You might be surprised to find that some of the best workers are hidden in plain sight. Hiring managers often limit their searches to the most obvious places, such as job boards or the familiar networks of personal and professional contacts. 

Going outside of the traditional talent pool may actually benefit your workforce. There is a wealth of hidden talent out there if you know where to look. Keep reading to learn more about the benefits of hidden workers and how to find untapped talent.

What are Hidden Workers?

Hidden workers are unemployed or underemployed individuals who possess the skills and qualifications that your business needs but who may not have the traditional resume or work experience required by most employers. 

Hidden workers can be found in a variety of places, from online job boards to community colleges to professional networks. Knowing who is likely to become a hidden worker can help you figure out how to find this untapped talent. Harvard researchers identified several “categories” of hidden workers. These categories are situations in which a person might become a hidden worker. It’s important to note that a hidden worker may identify with more than one category.

Let’s take a look at a few of those categories and how you can find and attract untapped talent who might fit that profile.

CategoryHow to Attract
Caretakers of children or adultsOffer childcare and/or eldercare services or vouchers. Offer remote work schedules.
Refugees, asylum seekers, and immigrantsWork with local groups that assist these groups to offer training and job opportunities.
People previously incarceratedWork with local organizations that assist the previously incarcerated to offer training and job opportunities.
People without traditional qualifications, degrees, or advanced degreesRemove degree requirements from and include the words “no experience necessary” in job postings. Offer upskilling and certification opportunities to entry-level applicants.
People who are long-term unemployed or have no history of employmentWrite job postings to specifically invite these groups. Be sure to include training information and information regarding organization initiatives to hire from these groups.

The Benefits of Hidden Workers

There are a number of reasons why going outside of the traditional talent pool can benefit your workforce. Here are just a few:

You can broaden your company’s perspective. Hidden workers come from all walks of life, which means they can bring a unique perspective to your team. This is especially valuable in today’s business landscape, where organizations are increasingly valuing diversity and inclusion.

You can save money. Hiring hidden workers is often cheaper than recruiting top talent from well-known sources. In addition, many hidden workers are willing to accept lower salaries in exchange for the opportunity to prove themselves and build their careers. 

You can improve your retention rates. Hidden workers tend to be highly motivated and engaged employees because they feel grateful for the chance to work at your company. As a result, they are less likely to leave their jobs than employees who were recruited through more traditional channels.

Improve company culture. Company culture is an essential part of keeping your best employees. There are challenges in the traditional employment model that can turn company culture sour. However, interjecting someone new can help keep your employees motivated and engaged. 

Training is easier that continual hiring. It’s easier to train employees than it is to hire the exact fit for the position in many cases. And because hidden workers are not as well-known as traditional candidates, they can be easier to train and mold into the ideal employee for your business.

If you’re looking for top talent, don’t limit your search to the most obvious places. There is a wealth of hidden talent out there if you know where to look. These underemployed or unemployed individuals often possess the skills and qualifications that your business needs but may not have the traditional resume or experience required by most employers. 

HR doesn’t have to be overwhelming. Partnering with HRO Resources, the HR experts, will help you stay ahead of the curve when it comes to hiring and retaining employees. Whether you are a startup or a growing company with 50+ employees, HRO has the tools you need so you can focus on guiding your team to success.

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