Passive candidates are people who are not actively looking for a new job, but may become interested in an opening if the situation is right. There are several benefits in passive recruiting. First of all, the recruiter can determine who should be targeted, as opposed to waiting for the right person to apply. In addition, recruitment time can be substantially reduced if the right person is found. Like most every other recruitment process, passive recruiting requires a process to be effective. This article will outline 4 recommendations to recruiting passive candidates.
The 4 Recommendations
- Be flexible and accommodating. Passive candidates have jobs and require flexibility in phone screens and interview times. In addition, they may not respond to calls or emails as quickly since they are at work. Do not hold this against them. It is a good thing. Offer before or after work hour times to speak or meet. This reduces hesitation the candidate might have in speaking with you. Work to make it easy for the candidate. The results will be better.
- Adjust your pitch. You have targeted a candidate because they check off many boxes you are looking for. Now, you must convince them that it is worthwhile to speak to you about an opportunity. Become a salesperson for the hiring company. It is important to clearly define why switching positions for this new opportunity is a wise career move. Ensure that you emphasize the brand you are representing.
- Bend but don’t break. Although passive recruitment can be a very beneficial practice, it is important not to promise the world. A targeted candidate may feel a bit entitled, and not negotiate in a way that will come to a fair agreement if an offer is given. Remember that these candidates are not desperate for a new job, and will likely not accept a first offer. Make sure that there is a plan and parameters set in place prior to negotiating.
- Keep in touch. As discussed in other article, building a strong network of pre-qualified candidates is a great idea. Only one person gets hired, so make sure to communicate with the good candidates who did not get hired this time, but may fit the next open job. It’s all about efficiency and creating the best road map for success.
In the end
Abraham Lincoln once said, “If I had eight hours to chop down a tree, I’d spend six sharpening my axe.” He was big on preparation. Preparing to recruit passively is a very important step in this process. Do not go in to it unprepared. The process should be in place, and only then will there be success. Passive recruitment not only gives you the opportunity to build a large network of skilled and targeted candidates, but it increases the responsiveness hiring companies are looking for when using a recruiter. Passive recruitment is a strategic advantage in the world of recruitment, and it helps set great recruiters apart from good ones.