5 Creative Ways to Recruit Passive Candidates

When a role becomes vacant in a company, recruiters scramble in search of ideal candidates to take up the position. The problem with this process is that there is a finite amount of time within which recruiters need to find someone to take up the position—generally before the current occupant ends their term.

This period can last anywhere between one month to three months, which isn’t a long time when you consider the process of recruiting someone.

Active recruiting generally entails creating job ads, uploading them to job search websites, culling through applications, interviewing, and finally settling on the right candidate.

Sometimes recruiters and HR managers get lucky and find the right person for the job fairly quickly—but most of the time, it is a long and arduous process. And it leaves a gap in the workings of the business for a while.

Instead of looking for candidates when you have absolutely no choice, why not change your sourcing strategy to reach out to passive candidates?

Passive candidates are people who are already employed, or who aren’t actively looking for a job. These potential employees would be a benefit to your business, but how can you reach them if they aren’t looking for you?

Here are five creative ways you can adopt to recruit passive candidates.

Check job boards

Active candidates use job boards to find new jobs but they are also an excellent area for searching for passive candidates. When people sign up to a job board or job search website, they upload their resumes and cover letters to those websites.

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Unless the candidate deletes their account, those documents remain on the site, and show up in recruiter searches. Some candidates even keep their accounts updated with their newest resumes.

Spend some time trawling through job boards to find candidates who may not be actively looking for a job but might still be amenable to a change.

Even if the resume you find is a bit old, it is worth considering the candidate if their skills and previous experience are relevant to your company.

Networking events

People around the world spend large amounts of their time online but that doesn’t mean that the offline world has nothing to offer.

Networking is still touted as one of the best ways to meet other people, and it is a great way to create a list of potential candidates that you can reach out to in the future.

Job and career fairs are ideal for meeting people looking for a job, but to reach passive candidates, you can host or attend events that aren’t directly related to your company.

Attend seminars or host workshops or a symposium where your HR managers and recruiters can meet with people face to face.

Meeting someone and speaking to them makes the interaction far more memorable than reaching out to someone with a DM on LinkedIn.

And you don’t need to break the bank on marketing the networking event, either. Design a poster for your event and share it around the neighborhood to leverage your location.

You can also share the poster on your digital channels and in your newsletters.

Capitalise on offline opportunities to make connections and you could find yourself with a strong database of potential candidates.

Online candidate sourcing

Use the digital sphere to your advantage by creating a blog, vlog, or podcast series about recruiting or about a subject close to your company.

Blogs can be created easily on websites, and vlogs can be shot using a phone camera and uploaded to your YouTube channel. There are numerous podcast hosting services that can help you make a simple yet effective podcast.

These online methods are a great way to reach passive candidates—they may not be looking for a job but a blog or podcast would interest them outside of the sphere of job hunting.

Online resources can also add value to candidates’ lives, which would act as an incentive to consider your company as a potential place to work.

And a blog or podcast would be an excellent channel to include recruitment announcements and ads, allowing you to reach numerous passive candidates.

Recruiting passive candidates

Image: Unsplash

Celebrate company culture

The days of people joining a company straight out of college and staying there for years, no matter what happens within the four walls of the office, are well and truly gone.

In the modern age, people aren’t interested in just the work, but the ethos of the company they are joining.

Is your company fun-loving? Challenging? Can employees expect an environment of constant learning? Job seekers need to know this, as do passive candidates. It’s part of your business brand and it needs to be shared with audiences.

Since passive candidates aren’t looking for a job, posting about the specifics of a newly vacant role won’t interest them. On the other hand, if you share posts and blogs about what kind of perks or benefits employees at your company enjoy, that may elicit some interest in these passive candidates.

Social media is an excellent way to highlight your company’s culture. While you can post updates on LinkedIn, use other social channels such as Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat to make your brand more personable.

Show behind-the-scenes videos and photos of life at your workplace. Celebrate achievements and milestones for the brand and your employees.

If your company culture is the right fit for a passive candidate, they will reach out to you instead of you having to look for them when you have limited time to fill a role.

Get current employees involved

Another way to celebrate your company’s culture is by putting your employees in the spotlight. Passive candidates will be far more tempted to leave their roles if you can leverage the power of FOMO and social proof through your employees.

Ask your employees to post about their experiences working at your company. Feature them on Facebook Live and Instagram Live video, or host a takeover where people can get day-in-the-life snippets of how it is to work at your company.

Tap into your employees’ networks by asking them for referrals. You already know how well your employee works and how they fit into the existing company culture. Perhaps they know of someone who would be a similarly good fit for your company?

By involving your employees in attracting passive candidates, you expand your ability to reach a wider net of potential employees.

In Summary

Reaching passive candidates can help your recruitment process immensely, but you have to get creative with your methods. Don’t ignore old listings on job boards—just because someone isn’t looking for a job, doesn’t mean that they won’t be a good fit now.

Host or attend networking events because meeting someone face to face makes you more memorable than a quick post or DM online.

Use online resources such as blogs, vlogs, and podcasts to give your potential employees some value-addition in their lives. Highlight your company’s culture whenever you can and get your employees involved in spreading the word.

By using these five methods, you can reach passive candidates and fill your job vacancies with ease.


About the Author

Ronita Mohan is a content marketer at the online infographic and design platform Venngage. She has a keen interest in writing about subjects related to marketing, productivity, pop culture, and diversity. When Ronita isn’t writing about these topics, she’s thinking about writing.

Team 6Q

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