Human Resources Blog - Spark Hire
Crucial Recruiting Strategies for Attracting Passive Candidates

Crucial Recruiting Strategies for Attracting Passive Candidates

Passive candidates are a unique breed. They’re not banging down your door looking for a job, but when approached correctly, they can contribute to your workplace in a productive and vibrant way. However, for employers who are used to being approached by candidates who are hungry for a job, the notion of a passive candidate is a confusing one. If you’re looking to become more effective at recruiting these types of individuals, here’s what you need to know:

You can use your applicant tracking system to find them

If the individual has applied to a job in the past, they’re in your system and you know that they’re interested in working for you. When a job opens up, sort through these applications and see who might not have been an appropriate fit in the past, but may work perfectly for your current opening. Then make contact with these people and schedule a time for a conversation. Don’t just expect them to see the opening and apply on their own.

Make sure your presence goes wide

You want everyone in your industry to know about your business. Boosting your social media presence is a good way to do this. Get involved on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. You can also start blogging as a way to help develop your brand’s voice. When candidates are able to read posts that come from your CEO or other managers within your organization, they get a better sense of what separates you from your competitors. This helps to make your company more appealing.

Don’t be too proud to go after candidates

Some companies feel that by going after candidates they find desirable, they appear desperate. In reality, if you see someone who you truly feel is talented, you need to recruit them eagerly. Don’t sit back and hope that they see how wonderful your company is and submit their application. Make an effort to reach out to this individual and let them know how and why joining your team could be mutually beneficial.

Go in softly

If you try to recruit passive candidates with a heavy hand, don’t be surprised when you end up overwhelming them as you cause the relationship to crumble. When you’re working with a passive candidate, it’s crucial that you go in with a soft touch. Build the relationship slowly. Don’t immediately dive into a conversation about why they should want to work for you and what you’re willing to pay them.

Passive candidates can be a valuable resource when you’re looking to fill an open position within your company. Put pride aside and recruit these candidates willingly and you’ll find that you fill the available spot with someone who adds a positive new dynamic to your team.

Image: Jakub Jirsak/

Lauren Levine

Lauren Levine is a copywriter/blogger who contributes to a number of magazines and websites including The Frisky, USA Today, and others. She also authors her own blog called Life with Lauren. She loves cooking, anything on the E! network, and is trying to convince herself that running isn't so bad.