Who are Passive Candidates?
Passive candidates are those who are not looking at your job postings. They aren’t even looking for a job, let alone looking for any recruiter’s specific job offer. In other words, these are the candidates whom you as the recruiter would love to hire on your team as they have the necessary skills and goals you’re looking for, but who are not actively looking for jobs in the first place.
Well, you’ll find a good number of passive candidates out there. And hence, your dilemma: How do you get someone interested in your job offer when they aren’t even looking for a new job?
Where You’ll Find Passive Candidates:
Before we get to how you can convince these candidates into considering your job offer, you first need to know where you can find them. And this elusive creature’s general habitats are: Social media networks, freelance and contractual employment platforms, student bodies, and, generally, in other job positions. These are all people who are perfectly content where they are for the moment and, hence, are not looking for either a new job or a job change. Chances are that the thought hasn’t even crossed their minds.
However, you have spotted these special (potential) hires in one or more of the locations mentioned above – most likely through friends, professional referrals, or (mainly) on social media. And while they seem content where they are, you (the recruiter) know that they would be a fantastic fit for the job position you’re looking to hire.
So now comes the next step; How would you entice these candidates away from their current comfort zone and into you waiting job position. Or, in plainer terms, how do you tell these candidates that there is a better job position waiting for them that they will be even happier with (than where they are now).
How to Attract Passive Candidates to Your Company:
So now you’ve zeroed in on your target(s) and are willing to fight for them. Great! But before they can join your company, and before you can make your job offer, these passive candidates first have to be aware that your company exists, and they have to believe that it’s a great place to work.
Here’s how you can do that:
Keep your employees happy and make sure that people know that your employees are happy:
Flexibility, room to grow, comfortable office perks, and plenty of breathing room to complete their tasks are all that employees generally need, to be happy at work. Having a meaningful job and knowing they are appreciated is also something that is essential for happy employees (as well as a well-run business). And you need to ensure your employees have these advantages; for keeps. Then you need to make sure that the world knows how happy your employees are to work in your company. Include it in the hiring page, and you’ll have a much better chance of getting your passive employees interested.
Let your brand speak for itself:
Keep your brand and company an active member of all social media channels. Let your website speak to the audience and interact with relevant circles via your brand’s social media accounts. For, in today’s age of instant communication, everything has a voice and a personality. And it’s important to let your own brand’s voice and personality speak for itself. It is what is going to attract passive candidates to your job posts in the long run.
Use hashtags and social media groups to engage with relevant users:
It’s through the hashtags and social media groups that are relevant to your industry that you can find social media users, with the potential to become passive candidates for your job posts. So it’s paramount that you engage with these circles of users on social media and keep up active and thoughtful interactions with them.
Create your own social media account(s) if necessary in order to engage with potential passive candidates on social media:
Perhaps, your brand’s official social media accounts are not personal enough to engage with users past a certain point. Or maybe, the voices of those accounts have limits to what they can engage in. Whichever is the case, if you find that your brand’s existing social media accounts don’t fulfill your needs when it comes to finding and engaging with passive candidates, then you (as the recruiter for your brand) can and should set up a new social media accounts to interact with passive candidates on your brand’s behalf. This is even preferable in some cases, and it’ll give you much more direct access to passive candidates too.
Understand that recruiting passive candidates is about relationships and that it is a long-term strategy:
Engaging with passive candidates via social media and maintaining their interest in your brand and company is paramount to finally being able to recruit them. Hence, it’s vital that you forge relationships with such candidates in order to keep them interested. After all, if they are perfectly happy or content where they are, then they’ll need additional incentive to move to your new job opening. And the truth is that today’s candidates will be more likely to do so if they have a favorable impression of the company and a positive relationship with the brand. For, a bad word from the existing employees might be enough for a passive candidate to dismiss your brand’s job post. Whereas, genuinely good employee feedback will interest them more than anything else could.
Also understand that recruiting passive candidates is a long-term strategy: They’re not going to jump for your job offer overnight. Rather, as the relationship positively builds, they’ll be more inclined to consider future job openings in your company, even if they are satisfied in the position they already hold.