Dec 13, 2018

4 Recruiting Tips for Sourcing Passive Candidates

Passive candidates are those that are content with their current position. They are likely working for companies that have upward growth and offer stability. Naturally, these busy professionals do not have the time to dedicate to a job search. This ultimately begs the question: How do you recruit top talent if they are passive candidates?

The answer is sourcing, and doing it effectively. By identifying these top prospects, you are implementing the first step to passive candidate recruiting for a better return on prospects in the long run.

To get a higher response rate from top prospects that you want to speak with, consider the following passive recruiting techniques:

  1. Conform to the proper message etiquette
  2. Send connection requests through the platform you are utilizing
  3. Leverage established connections to increase the chances of speaking with the individual
  4. Employ the help of a recruiter

In this article, we go over all 4 tips in-depth!

1. Source passive candidates with proper message etiquette

When reaching out to a passive candidate you should always construct short, eloquent messages that fit all the requirements of a proper business interaction. Professionals are busy and you do not want to contribute to that by making yourself a nuisance. Keep your messages trim and cut to the point. Candidates will likely disregard a message that consists of fluff or drawn out explanations before even reaching the overall point of the message.

As you do not personally know the candidate, it is important that you do not give off any signals that might attribute you to a spammer. Do not use all caps and proofread your message to avoid reaching out with a pitch that is riddled with grammatical errors.

It is also best practice to avoid including too many links. Include a link to the official job description and the company’s website but leave out links to each and every social media profile your company owns. If interested, the candidate will read over the description and likely do a bit of digging on their own.

The last thing to ensure that your message is succinct and concise is to end the message with a question such as, “Would you be interested in learning more?”

This is a call-to-action that could prompt an interested passive candidate to act by responding. By wrapping up your pitch to the candidate with a question you are essentially bringing the request full-circle while also extending an invitation to the individual. Including a question alone won’t be the reason a passive candidate responds, but it could be the bit of urging they need to express interest.

2. Send connection requests before contacting passive candidates

Before sending out that first message, it is best to send a connection request to the individual you are targeting. Based on our experience, people are more inclined to respond to your message when you send a connection request.

By sending a request before contacting a candidate you are establishing engagement with the individual. When your message is sent they will recognize the name and profile image from your previous connection request.

3. Leverage commonalities when sourcing passive candidates

This technique requires a bit of research on the part of the recruiter but it will ultimately yield better results than simply spraying requests that are not customized to each specific candidate. By pinpointing the commonalities between you and the candidate you are finding specific ways to connect and engage with the individual in a way that will not only make you stand out from other companies but also build a personal connection.

Utilizing commonalities can be split into two specific categories:

  1. Connections in common
  2. Connections based on similarities

These different categories can be best leveraged in different ways. For example, a connection in common is a gatekeeper to the candidate. By reaching out through your network you can use the connections you share with the passive candidate as a way to ask for an introduction. This is an excellent reason to continue to grow your network and strengthen your connections.

When connecting based on similarities you are identifying key factors such as graduating from the same school or being members of the same club and using them to spark interest in the candidate. The goal is to encourage a response based on the connections you share.

4. Get an expert involved by hiring a recruiter

Busy executives do not necessarily have the time to dedicate toward sourcing and establishing connections. By hiring a recruitment firm you are benefiting not only from their resources but also by eliminating the time that would be taken away from company employees to carry out the recruitment process. Recruitment firms take the pressure of the search, which can last from sixty to ninety days, off of the company. For more information on the value that executive search firms bring to the recruitment process, check out our article on how recruiters work for their clients.

As a recruiter’s entire profession revolves around finding the best candidate for open positions, it makes sense that they have strong, expansive networks. By using a recruiter, you are able to tap into their connections and use them for the benefit of your company. This also means that you are able to rely on the recruiter’s expertise to locate the optimal candidates that a company might not otherwise identify.

If you decide to take advantage of the services a recruitment firm can offer, then be sure to check out our hiring services for EOS® companies, organizations in the cannabis industry, as well as private and family-held businesses.


Next Steps:

  1. Understand the theory behind "Always Be Recruiting" and how to incorporate it into your organization today.
  2. Amplify your recruiting efforts with 3 recruitment marketing tactics.
  3. Download our checklist for hiring an executive search firm.

Subscribe to Blog