Human Resources Blog - Spark Hire

3 Ways to Recruit Candidates for a Confidential Search

3 Ways to Recruit Candidates for a Confidential SearchAs a manager, you may find yourself in a situation when you want to conduct a confidential candidate search.  Perhaps you have an employee who is not performing up to standard or maybe you have a new position that you are not ready to announce for some reason.  Either way, there are several ways you can tackle your confidential search while still keeping it on the down-low. 

1. Retain a Recruiter

One of the problems you will run into with a confidential search is that it will take up much more time to identify top talent.  You will not be able to post an ad easily because it could be traced back to you and your company.  This means you will have to do all of the digging on your own when it comes to the recruiting.

In order to keep your candidate search moving forward, you should consider the time saving benefit of retaining a recruiter.  When you retain a recruiter, you are hiring someone to do the legwork for you and find the candidates.  This will allow you to continue focusing on your typical day to day responsibilities, while the candidate search is underway.

Another benefit of retaining a recruiter is that the recruiter will be able to advertise for the position confidentially, ensuring that you are not missing out on any hidden talent.

Once the recruiter has identified a few top candidates, you can then begin to interview, saving you loads of time.

2. Search for Candidates

If you decide not to retain a recruiter, this means that you will need to handle the entire candidate search.  Since you will not be able to confidentially advertise as easily as a recruiter outside of your organization, you will need to rely on your own candidate search skills.

Make sure you are using any sources that you have access to, such as online job boards as well as social media. has a free resume search and you can conduct candidate searches on LinkedIn, varying with the type of account you have.

Be very careful when approaching potential candidates.  If you want to keep your search confidential, you don’t want to tell all until you know you have a candidate that you want to move forward with.

3. Video Interviews

It is difficult to conduct a confidential search while having interviews in the office.  One way to get around this is by conducting video interviews.  Live video interviews are a great way for you to meet a candidate and discuss face-to-face their experience and skills.  Simply close your office door for some privacy and interview away!

When it comes time for final interviews, you will eventually need to bring candidates in for an interview, so be prepared to let the cat out of the bag at that time.

How do you recruit for a confidential candidate search?  Please share your tips below in the comments.

Image: Santiago Cornejo/

Julia Weeks

Julia is a skilled Recruiter with over 8 years of experience in sourcing, interviewing, and hiring within many industries globally. She works closely with hiring managers and job seekers to understand needs and desires, while offering guidance and ensuring the right fit. When not recruiting or writing, Julia enjoys spending time outside cycling, taking her dog for walks, or honing her sailing skills.