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How to Find Untapped Talent: Power of Hidden Workforce


The hidden workforce or untapped talent is defined as the manpower and resources that are already present in the economy which is necessary for the success of the organization. Failure to successfully extract such resources leads to a decline in the productivity of the organization.

People who are present in the individual workforce perform at an acceptable level and they tend to move from one level to another without creating much attention. They prefer doing non-advertised works and practices.

The main disadvantage of people working in the hidden workforce is that they tend to lose sight of their goals. They tend to change their trajectories occasionally.

They tend to have a large potential in the industry, but they are often unnoticed and forgotten by their supervisors and managers. So failure in recognizing a hidden workforce can lead to halting in the success of the organization and also in the success of the economy on a large scale.

How to Find Untapped Talent

Untapped Talent Meaning:

Untapped talent is usually defined as a resource or material that has a large potential for use but has not been exploited to its maximum efficiency and usage. This is because many organizations try to find unique talent and they tend to develop internal talent that is beneficial for the organization.


For example One of the most famous examples is the case of Susan Boyle. Susan Boyle was a rather plump and a shy woman who was just average looking. She didn’t stand out much, and would always mind her own business.

Susan was nearly 50 when she auditioned for Britain’s Got Talent which is the American version of the American idol. She was not welcomed that much by the judges and the audience alike because of her looks.

But when she attempted singing she became a sensation and a trend. Eventually, the middle aged woman was placed second in the competition and hence she became an international star.

This shows us that modern society is too hasty to determine others based on their looks that they forget what their core values are.

The only way to stop such thinking and teach them a lesson is by showing them what we made of or by setting up an example. In the above example, Susan clearly showed the power of hidden and untapped talent.

When you are in the hidden workforce:

When you are an individual who involves in the hidden workforce, you do not find much happiness in what you do and that results in your productivity and outcome. This is because you feel that you’re not fully engaging in your work, and you’re not enjoying your work.

When that happens you lose which in turn results in the economy losing and in the end nobody wins. Hence, when most of the employees enter a state of disengagement they shrink the active workforce and many of them get categorized under the hidden workforce.

This results in billions and billions of losses for the economy and can affect the actively working organization. Hence, try to ensure that you have an active workforce and a happy one too. So to achieve this, try to make your workers happy and satisfied.

This can be done by providing them with better working facilities, good parking conditions and various other perks.

Tips for Finding the Best Untapped Talent:

Finding untapped talent can be hard work as they are often unnoticed and ignored. Instead of finding candidates through expensive and time consuming searches, most of the companies try to find employees creatively and through inexpensive methods. These are the following ways in which, one can discover new and creative talents.

1. Tap into social networks:

Social networking sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn can use to find new untapped talent by expanding one’s social networks. This can be done by posting click based advertisements that are more popular and cheaper than the traditional form of posting advertisements such as through the newspaper, billboards, and transportation.

Moreover, using social networks to post job advertisements are more functional since you are posting a job directly to them rather than posting them in public.

If you’re finding an employee, you can post an advertisement for a job through a Facebook status or a tweet. Chances are people who are in contact within your network would directly come and approach you.

Hence, no middlemen are needed and there is no lag in the overall hiring process. The best example of a job searching social networking site is LinkedIn where there are a large number of people having endless potentials who are constantly keeping touch with potential employers through their LinkedIn profile.

2. Try to look for talent by searching through start up sites:

If you are a person who interests in starting your start-up then, search new talents through job searching sites specifically designed for start-ups and such incentives.

Such sites focus more on people who genuinely interest in working for a start-up and not just simply a job. This will result in appointing people who aid in the growth and development of the company. So such sites aid in finding responsible and deserving individuals.

If you are finding a cofounder for your start-up sites like Cofounder, such sites provide an online network for entrepreneurs. This way you can find people who easily interest in finding people who interest to involve in start-ups.

3. Try to gain more publicity:

Many companies use innovative ways to hire employees who interest in joining the company. A famous example: a Canadian company named Formashape, a manufacturing company, where they install a billboard stating “all trespassers will hire”.

One reporter amused by the innovative way that the company used to garner attention. He then wrote a news article praising the advertisement method. This lead to capture attention from various job seekers, which lead to an increased influx in the number of job applications to the company. Try to be viral with your innovative ideas and techniques.

4. Revamp your website:

Most aspiring employees search their prospective employers by googling them. Hence, a great way to attract such potential workers is by making your website more interesting and eye catching.

Even if your company is good in its industry, it is not perfect without a good website having excellent aesthetics. In this era, most companies use websites as a mirror to reflect the unique work culture and the atmosphere of the company.

Add pictures and illustrations that depict a typical day at the office. Once given the relevant information, it makes it easier for the candidates to apply for the positions that they’re searching for.

5. Find where the talent is:

The main drawback of untapped talent is that these types of talents are really hard to find and do not show to others very easily. This is the reason why many company recruiters search for unpolished and raw talent. Don’t try to wait for talent to come and find you, instead get out into the world and find it.

For example for finding aspiring writers, you can check sites such as Tumblr and Mediabistro. Also, to find untapped talent try to check at colleges and community colleges.

Such institutions encourage students to go out in the open, and you can find aspiring employees at job fairs, placement fairs and sometimes their own job listing sites. Try to find graduate students who are eager to learn, tries to see things from a new perspective and are ready to constantly improve themselves.

6. Prefer remote workers:

Try to recruit remote workers, since they have the most potential in making the job done. Usually, remote workers often try to do jobs that are interesting to them and hence they try to do their jobs in a fun and unique manner. Also, they are suitable for doing on site jobs.

Many companies prefer remote work these days since it helps in the development of business strategies, helps in increasing productivity and also helps in the expansion of the geographical network of the company.

These kinds of jobs also attract new employees who interest in jobs that include traveling. The recent study by Cisco showed that 70% of employees had higher productivity and output when they are working remotely.

7. Attract millennials for the job:

Irrespective of the common misconception, many millennials or the generation interest in doing jobs that include traveling. This is because many millennials crave adventure, hence they’re more than ready to do jobs, especially remote and onsite jobs.

More Benefits for Hidden Workforce:

  1. Attracts the best cross section of talent and hardworking people.
  2. They are very loyal to the company and its supervisors. They try to overcome barriers and obstacles together, so they can make a stronger and more cemented relationship.
  3. The hidden workforce helps you to fulfill your diversity and reversion policies.
  4. They help you in opening a new business market and increases the range of the target audience and customers.
  5. They are good at problem solving. This is because, since they are the hidden workforce they face problems every day. They also try to solve issues with a great amount of creativity. Many companies are successful because they have a creative workforce.
  6. Also, the hidden workforce represents a wide variety of communities and groups of people.

Contingent laborers:

Contingent laborers also come under the category of the hidden workforce. These laborers are defined as employees who are not permanent and are just kept as temporary employees based on a small contract.

So whenever a company manages their employees, try to include the contingent employees. This is necessary as the temporary employees house a lot of potential and undiscovered talent. Failure in managing a workforce can lead to a decline in the progress of the company and can even lead to a huge loss or bankruptcy.

How can we manage a workforce having both kinds of employees?

The first step in managing a workforce with contingent laborers is that try to identify the specific roles and positions that are critical for the growth of the company. Try to understand that these positions are the core of your enterprise and have the potential to increase your business value and net worth. Mapping the workforce is a part of workforce management, and contingent workers also include in this planning.

A category management approach:

To find untapped talent managing the positions available for them is necessary. This is regardless of your employment status, that is, whether you are permanent or temporary labor. A category based management requires collaboration between all kinds of laborers to achieve the required output. This type of model usually focusses on five dimensions.

  1. Category strategy
  2. Governance and structure
  3. Business management
  4. Strategic sourcing
  5. Technology enablement

The main aim of these five methods is for the company to help deliver and exploit the potentials of their hidden workforce to a maximum.

A strategy driven workforce helps you to place and use your employees carefully, and this reduces the chances of risks and mistakes that could affect the company’s goals. Also, this type of management is suitable for a flexible workforce.

How to Implement an Ideal Workforce?

The best method is to implement your plans slowly at a steady pace. This helps the employees to get an idea of the various roles that they expect to offer, and the positions allotted.

After assigning, have an interaction with the stakeholders to get an idea about the various management risks and dangers. If there are certain dangers and difficulties within a certain area of management, implement these jobs to highly experienced and apt professionals. Low risks jobs can give to lower level employees.

Imagine a workplace where the employees excited about getting their jobs done and are enjoying it to the fullest. This way we can tap raw and untapped talent. Try to make it into a reality and be successful in your business.