In a time where top talent is in demand and candidates are tough to come by, it’s important that recruiters work to really engage candidates. Good recruiters know it’s not enough to just blast job postings on social media… candidates will just blow by those like any other automated posting. There’s much more to recruitment, including finding passive candidates – those that are currently employed and not necessarily looking to change jobs.
So, how do you approach and engage these passive candidates? It’s important to cater your initial contact with a passive candidate to sound both professional and genuine. You want to capture the candidate’s attention, but not in a spammy way. One of the best ways of doing that is with a personalized email. Focus on the candidate: Do your homework – dig into their background and find out their interests, and see if you can work that into your description about what makes the role/your client perfect for them. A simple but personalized message shows that you aren’t just sending out automated responses to everyone on LinkedIn.
Make sure you explain who you are, who you’re with/what you do, and that you’re clear about the role. Sometimes recruiters try to make emails too brief so as to not overwhelm the candidate in the initial outreach, but it’s important you include enough information and detail to be informative and transparent about the role and your mission.
It’s essential to stress the ‘perks’ – after all, the candidate is likely comfortable in his or her current role, so you have to “sell” the reason they should change. Sometimes, it’s not all about the money. Really customize your email or message to draw in their attention with benefits like opportunity for growth, relocation package, or a really unique or flexible work environment/culture. If you notice that the candidate posts a lot of hiking pictures to their Instagram, mention the company’s great location near mountains. If the candidate ‘likes’ a lot of nonprofits or contribute to charities on their Facebook, mention how your client is involved in the community.
Always include a “call to action” of a date and time you’re available to chat – even better, use a free email scheduler like calendly to allow candidates to choose the time that works best for them.
How do you engage passive candidates? What have you found that works or doesn’t work? Do you have a specific template that you use?