There can be great anguish, not to mention frustration, irritation, and discouragement, associated with an active job search. The process can be agonizingly slow, with a lack of clear communication (sometimes even non–existent communication), and certainly nebulous timeframes proffered by decision–makers. (Have you read my article “Everybody Lies”?)
Dr. John Sullivan, in his article “Understanding Why Fast Hiring is Critical to Recruiting Success” suggests there is a direct correlation between speed of hiring and whether a candidate is passive (employed but open to opportunities) or unemployed and actively searching.
It makes perfect sense. When a passive candidate “finally” makes up his mind to interview for an opportunity (notice how the candidate holds all the power), assuming he is “the” right candidate, a company will move quickly to bring him on board rather than lose him to a counteroffer.
Conversely, an unemployed candidate probably isn’t going anywhere anytime soon (who holds all the power in this scenario?) … unless that candidate is entertaining multiple offers simultaneously.