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The Art of Attracting Passive Candidates


Talent Acquisition is more challenging than ever; it’s time to get creative in efforts to attract passive candidates! Passive candidates are those who aren’t actively looking for change, but who would consider the right opportunity if presented to them. As Executive Search specialists, we know that these candidates make up a large proportion of the talent pool, but it takes work and persistence to find them and attract them. Here are some things to consider when looking for passive candidates:


1. Leverage Your Network Wisely

Your professional network is a goldmine for finding passive candidates. Reach out to your connections and ask for recommendations. Seek referrals from your current employees and clients – they can vouch for your company's reputation and serve as trusted sources for potential candidates. Be active on social media platforms like LinkedIn to expand your network and engage with passive candidates. A warm introduction from someone they trust can make a significant impact and increase the chances of getting their attention. Remember, networking is a mutual exchange, so be ready to offer assistance in return.


2. Personalization is the Key

Just like in any relationship, personalization plays a crucial role in attracting passive candidates. Don't send generic messages or job offers that could apply to anyone. Research the candidate's background, skills, and interests to tailor your approach. When you’re speaking with a potential candidate, show genuine interest in their career aspirations and consider whether – from their perspective -- the opportunity you have on offer truly would be a good match. By customizing your outreach, you'll make passive candidates feel valued and increase the likelihood of them considering your organization, either for the current role or a future one.


3. Showcase Your Unique Company Culture

Passive candidates are often content in their current roles, so you need to entice them with something extraordinary. Highlight your company's unique culture and work environment. Showcase the opportunities for growth, learning, and advancement within your organization. Share success stories of current employees who have thrived in your company. Passive candidates are more likely to consider a move if they see a vibrant and supportive work culture that aligns with their values. Consider featuring employee testimonials or organizing virtual meetups with potential teammates to give candidates a taste of your company's atmosphere. Be honest about your company culture and don't exaggerate or misrepresent it. A candidate who feels deceived will quickly lose interest.


4. Craft a Compelling Story

Passive candidates aren't actively seeking job opportunities, so you need to captivate them with a compelling story about your company and the role you're offering. Focus on how their skills and expertise will make a difference in your organization. Share concrete examples of projects they'll be involved in and the impact they can make. Paint a vivid picture of the potential future they can have with your company. Showcasing a clear career path and exciting challenges may tempt passive candidates to take a leap and join your team. Stay authentic, and avoid embellishing or promising unrealistic outcomes, as it can lead to disappointment if expectations aren't met.


5. Exercise Patience and Persistence

Recruiting passive candidates requires patience and persistence. They might not respond right away, and that's okay. Respect their current commitments and give them the time they need to consider your opportunity. Follow up at appropriate intervals to show your continued interest and willingness to accommodate their timeline. If they decline initially, don't burn bridges – keep the door open for future opportunities. Some passive candidates may need several touchpoints before they decide to make a move. Don’t be overly aggressive or pushy. Respect their decisions and boundaries.


If you need help shaping your talent acquisition strategy, or want to partner with us to recruit passive candidates, get in touch to arrange a quick chat. Email Paul, Brent, Troy, or Tara, or give us a call at 519-673-3463 or 416-847-0036.

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