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Act Quickly to Avoid Losing Top-Tier Candidates to Competitors

Workforce Development

Construction industry employers are competing against each other to hire the most qualified people. Very few top-tier candidates are actively searching for new positions on the market. A majority of the most valuable candidates are passive. Passive candidates only become open to the idea of changing jobs when an extraordinary career opportunity comes to them.

Too many employers are losing out on golden opportunities to hire top talent when they agree to an interview. Their mistake? Assuming that passive candidates will wait indefinitely to receive an offer.


A recruiter’s job is to get to know top talent. One checks in with a wide range of industry professionals, sometimes over the course of several years, so they can understand each individual’s definition of “the right opportunity.” When a company is hiring for a position that aligns perfectly with a potential employee who is a perfect culture match, the recruiter will bring it to that person, even if they are not actively looking.

If that individual agrees to an interview, the recruiter advises the employer that if they want to hire that person, they must be prepared to extend an offer quickly. Once a candidate chooses to talk to one company about one position, they will immediately become much more open to considering offers from other employers too. The next employer that calls will take advantage of the opportunity to hire that person if the company does not act quickly.


During an initial interview, a candidate may tell you very honestly that they are not talking to other employers. That does not mean the passive candidate will remain dedicated to the idea of working only for your company while waiting three months for a job offer.

If employers prolong the time period between the initial interview and the day of the offer, they can be sure the candidate will start going on other interviews. Though most employers do not want to rush into hiring, if they interview someone and are incredibly impressed, they must expedite the hiring process and make the offer as soon as possible.


From what I have seen during my career as a recruiter, passive candidates are often more particular about what they consider. They do more research about the fit, the longevity and the culture. They are more likely to look for positions they want to be in for a decade or longer. If they agree to an interview with a company, they are serious about the position. It will be worth the company’s efforts to be prepared before the first conversation. Take steps to speed up your vetting process to make that offer faster than the candidate can start interviewing with other employers.

If a highly experienced and skilled candidate walks in the door, assume they are going to be talking to other employers and will be off the market very soon. In this market, whether a recruiter brings the candidate to you or whether the candidate contacts you directly, when you have the opportunity to interview a premier candidate and find that they fit the company culture, you’ve hit an ace. Do not expect to find three more to compare them against. Go the distance with that candidate as quickly as possible.

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