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Various candidates have various motives and levels of interest. Therefore, when you constantly hear about active and passive candidates in the recruitment sector and if you’re a newbie, you might be wondering what exactly do these mean.

The most significant fact is that everyone in this industry is trying to find the right and perfect candidate for companies. These specific candidates they shortlist might either be unemployed, employed, or employed but not looking for a new opportunity anytime soon.

One wouldn’t know unless there’s a steady stream of conversation happening between these parties. So before diving into the topic, you need to understand these active and passive candidates. 

An active candidate is someone who is aggressively looking out for a job. This doesn’t necessarily mean that the person has to be unemployed, but sometimes that might be the case. These candidates might be looking for jobs for various reasons. They include- they want to take on more responsibility, the company they were previously working for went out of business or are confused about their current employer’s stability.

It is said that about 25% of the workforce actually falls into this category. Most of the open positions are filled from here since they’re actively seeking their next role. 

On the other hand, passive candidates are employed and are not seeking out new opportunities. The benefit that this group brings is that- since they are not looking for new job roles, they won’t be interviewing anyone else. They are probably willing to explore or talk about new opportunities.

Sometimes in search of passive candidates, you might come across super passive ones who are least interested in moving on from their current job role as they are extremely content with it.

As a recruiter, you must keep in mind that you shouldn’t forget to mention that you would still love to hear back from them though they aren’t interested no matter what you do to approach these passive candidates. Don’t give up hope easily.

Even if they are not responsive, you have to make sure that you give them enough time. They like to know that they have options but don’t just thrust it down their throat. Shoot a reminder email now and then since sometimes phone calls can be irritating, especially when working. 

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If you’re a recruiter in search of passive candidates and can’t seem to find creative or inventive methods, then you’ve absolutely landed on the right article.

8 Creative Ways To Reach Out To Passive Candidates 

Recruiters keep scrambling in search of ideal candidates to take up a vacant position. However, as you might have understood just by the definition that it’s no easy task if you want to recruit a passive candidate.

So here are 8 ways on how you can reach out to them. 

1. Do Your Bit Of Research 

Before you start raving about your organization, you must do plenty of research about it first. It’s not just enough to know about the in-and-out of your organization and the position and role of the potential candidate. You should know about their current job and workplace and research why they might

be in two minds about switching jobs. Most recruitment firms and bosses of companies (which accounts for almost 89% assume that employees quit because they want more money, but this is absolutely not true. Only 12% of these employees leave an organization for more money. Therefore making an assumption is always a lazy approach.

You have to keep in mind that the person you are approaching has already decided to stay on his/her current job despite the money they are making. Thus, to stand a chance in even attracting this passive candidate’s mind, you have to know about their likes and dislikes as a recruiter. 

2. Personalize Your Pitch

It’s likely that maybe there are recruitment agencies who have approached your passive candidates before. Your candidate has probably been hearing and seeing the same thing repeatedly. But how do you stand out?

You stand out by personalizing your pitch! Do not fall prey to a pre-made recruitment script or by downloading and editing a cold-email template from the internet.

You can make the pitch personal by checking the candidates’ social media accounts. And mind you, if you have a mutual connection or a bunch of shared interests, then you’re already off to a great start! Thereby, understand the importance of personalizing a pitch as it can be of great help to you. 

3. Do Not Commit The Mistake Of Overselling Or Underselling

Always use a light and friendly tone when recruiting passive candidates. It’s tough to make them turn 180 degrees and have them switch jobs immediately. So any effort you’re making in overselling will be absolutely going to waste.

On the other hand, listen to what the candidate has to say. It’s alright if your company doesn’t have a job for them right now. It’s probably likely that they will connect with you later on down the line.

Remember that if you keep pushing them and oversell, they will immediately flush you from their mind, whereas, if you’re gentle, they will re-establish contact someday. Recruitment agencies have been doing this for many years, and a company should establish contact with reputable ones. They are trustworthy, effective, and know how to get their job done. 

Another massive mistake one must avoid is underselling a pitch. You would not want your interaction to be an unforgettable one as soon as you keep your call. Be insightful about your hiring process and make sure it’s not a sales pitch. Get into the specifics.

Ensure you share relevant blog posts or videos from your website and social media pages with the candidate. It would be best to give them as a recruiter something that they do not already have. 

4. The Concept Of Video Recruiting

Videos are a quick and inexpensive form of content that has the ability to garner more interaction and engagement from users.

Recruitment videos are one such content type that can make your clients stand out by sharing insights into the company and offering a more personalized and human approach. This, in turn, attracts a high-quality candidate that’s a better fit for the company.

It allows the authentic culture of your company to shine through. With videos, employees can share company testimonials, behind the scenes of day-to-day operations, and so much more, all of which can give a clear idea of its deepest values. This will prove beneficial when you’re trying to get in touch with a passive candidate. 

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5. Make Applying To Jobs Easier Via Smartphones

We all live in a multiscreen world where no one can deny that consumer trends drive recruitment. More than half of one’s digital time is spent on a smartphone or a tab. Job seekers are expected to apply to jobs via mobile phones and tablets more than often now.

At least 34% of us have already used our mobile phones to look for a job, and that’s exactly why we need more responsive websites.

As a recruiter, make sure passive candidates can fill out jobs easily via smartphones. Remember to mention your contact number and address (responsive on Google Maps). 

6. Invest In Automation Tools

Artificial Intelligence AI has changed the face of modern recruiting, including candidate sourcing. A study back in 2016 has also shown how algorithms can actually predict the success of hires better than any recruiter. Therefore make sure you get an Applicant Tracking System(ATS) that uses AI to crawl the web to collect a wide variety of candidate data- from resume details to social media activities.

Based on a few AI tools, you can actually predict which passive candidates will be open to switching jobs, making it easier for you to prioritize them over anyone else.

Remember that the concept of manual candidate sourcing is extremely obsolete now. The usage of AI can help take off the load and has a huge payoff. Passive candidates are not entirely interested, so you have to search for new ways by which you can garner their attention. 

7. Start Establishing A Referral Program

A company’s current employees can actually serve as the best source of new talent. The concept of referral programs has long been a staple of modern recruiting agencies. In fact, studies show that referred employees actually work better than non-referred hires.

This is one of the best options for hiring a passive candidate because they might not necessarily respond to a recruiter. In contrast, they might consider an opportunity brought to them via a personal connection.

Referral programs yield high-quality candidates than any other recruitment sourcing methods. Thereby, if your company doesn’t already have a referral program, make sure you start building one. 

8. Use Various Social Media Platforms

LinkedIn acts as a major branding tool for most recruiters, but it’s so overcrowded nowadays that it actually grows harder to source passive candidates.

Oversaturation of LinkedIn is one of the prime reasons hiring managers now claim that passive candidate recruiting has become less effective. So it’s time to expand beyond LinkedIn and try other social media channels like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or Snapchat. 

a. Twitter 

With industry-related keywords and hashtags, Twitter’s advanced search functionality can help us look for passive candidates’ profiles. You can even refine your search results based on location or other important criteria.

For instance, if you’re hiring for a sales position, you search Twitter for specific sales-related keywords.

You can filter the search results as per your company’s location. This leads you to discover a sales rep who frequently shares content on Twitter and has high engagement. Once you connect with him/her, it can lead to a potential high-quality candidate.

b. Facebook 

Using Facebook’s targeted search, a recruiter can find high-quality passive candidates.

Consider sending an outreach message via Facebook and not LinkedIn. They may be more inclined to respond on Facebook since that’s not somewhere they typically receive a message from a recruiter. 

c. Instagram Or Snapchat 

Incorporating Instagram and Snapchat into your recruiting strategies is something really new. Recruiters can use these social media platforms to showcase the company culture and thereby attract passive candidates.

Always remember to keep trying hard to build proper engagement. Understand more about the recruiting trends currently in vogue to drive your recruiting tactics to success. Remember that if you see less success with LinkedIn, it’s time to diversify your social media presence. 

The rejection rates are higher more than often in passive candidates. Nevertheless, the effort one puts in makes everything worthwhile.

Recruiting passive candidates gives a recruiter plenty of scopes to learn about the company, various hiring strategies, and trends.

Even if a passive candidate is not interested today, they might reach you tomorrow. Sometimes, if the offer doesn’t match their interest, they can refer the position to someone else they know. The fruits of action are not immediate, but they do come with time. 

Perfect candidates don’t just walk through the door, ready to be hired. Active candidates indeed make a recruiter’s job easier. However, sourcing passive ones are necessary because of their quality (since they haven’t been switching jobs to and forth, qualified for specialized roles).

One will indeed make several mistakes along the way, and sometimes one has to make peace with hiring under-qualified candidates but try these methods outlined above to source passive candidates. You will be ready to make a massive change in your company for years and years to come.

Written By
Eli Franklin completed her MBA from Kelley School Of Business and since then has worked as a content specialist and marketing executive for Recruit CRM. She is regularly creating specialized content for recruiters and helping Recruit CRM develop a strong marketing game

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