In this article, we explore unexpected industries that attract passive job seekers, with insights from five industry professionals. From the perspective of a CEO to a career coach, we delve into industries ranging from eSports to tech. Discover why these sectors are appealing to passive job seekers and how they might apply to you.

eSports: Turning Hobbies into Careers

As the founder of one of the UK’s premier four-day-work-week recruitment platforms, I see a lot of job listings. One is gaining interest among the talent pool: eSports. It may come as a surprise, but the appeal is quite intriguing. In the realm of eSports, the allure lies in the fusion of passion and potential.

First, eSports offers an avenue for individuals to turn their hobbies into a profession. Gamers who were once solely recreational players can now aspire to make a living by doing what they love. This unique opportunity to transform a pastime into a career is incredibly appealing.

Second, the eSports industry is rapidly expanding, creating a vast range of job roles beyond just playing games. From event management to marketing and production, there’s a multitude of career possibilities, making it attractive to those seeking diverse career paths.

With eSports continuously showing growth, I expect this trend to continue.

Phil McParlane, Founder and CEO,

Outdoor and Adventure Travel: Balance and Exploration

The outdoor and adventure travel industry is an unexpected draw for passive job seekers because it aligns with their love for the outdoors, travel, and adventure.

In fact, according to recent data, the travel industry has witnessed an all-time high in recruitment. Overall, travel and tourism contributed, directly and indirectly, to roughly 3.64 million jobs in the UK in 2022.

I think that it is the promise of a balanced work-life environment, opportunities for travel and exploration, and a commitment to environmental stewardship that makes this industry very appealing.

A diverse range of roles on offer, the promise of adventure, and a positive work culture create an attractive combination for those not actively job hunting.

Katharine Gallagher, Professional Growth Specialist- Education, Career, Recruitment, Productivity, Business,

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Nonprofit Sector: Community and Mission-Driven Work

The nonprofit sector often offers flexibility and a sense of community that can be challenging in cutthroat corporate environments. They’re the yoga class of the job market—less about the sweat and grind, more about the holistic experience.

While passive job seekers might not be pounding on the doors of nonprofits with resumes in hand, they’re certainly leaving the window ajar, enticed by the fresh air of purpose and the gentle breeze of potential impact.

Thomas Powner, CEO | Career Coach | Resume/LinkedIn Writer, Career Thinker Inc.

Mental Health Industry: Focus on Well-being

With a growing focus on personal well-being and mental health, the mental health and wellness industry is attracting individuals who are passionate about helping others. The industry offers a variety of roles, from counselors and therapists to wellness program coordinators. 

While some roles require certifications or licenses, others don’t. There are many new companies focused specifically on mental health, and those interested may be intrigued enough to make the leap.

Kelli Anderson, Career Coach, Resume Seed

Tech Companies: Stability and Opportunity

Tech companies, particularly larger, more established ones, attract passive candidates, since we often see them as stable opportunities to break into the industry while maintaining a sense of job security. These legacy enterprise-tech companies draw passive candidates who want to put their feelers out there from time to time. 

Additionally, their more bureaucratic nature can bring a sense of familiarity for those from government, higher education, and the nonprofit sector.

Dr. Kyle Elliott, Founder and Tech Career Coach,

Tech companies attract passive candidates


There are multiple unique and unexpected occupations that attract passive job seekers today. From turning passions into professions in eSports to a balanced life in outdoor travel, each industry meets different aspirations. Nonprofits offer community and purpose, the mental health sector aligns with well-being trends, and huge tech companies attract with job stability. These industries are showing an evolving job landscape, appealing to candidates seeking fulfilling careers beyond just a well-paying job.

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