Why Relationships Are Key To Recruitment

Recruiting passive candidates isn’t an overnight solution to hiring. It takes strategy and time, but for some industries can be the most effective type of hire because it traditionally provides higher retention rates over the long term.

“The very first thing to keep in mind is that relationships matter,” “You’ll need to leverage them, create them and maintain them over time to turn a passive candidate into a hire.” 

Jena Brown, an independent recruiting operations and brand strategist. 

In reality, your pool of potential candidates extends far beyond the stacks of resumes you receive in response to job postings, the article stated. “There are plenty of highly skilled workers who are not actively seeking work, but who would jump at the chance if the right position came long. Most managers will attempt to recruit passive candidates at some point, but these waters are tricky to navigate. How can you identify passive candidates? And once you do, how can you tactfully broach the topic of jumping ship and joining your team?”- Brown.

The best ways to recruit a passive candidate are:

  1. Employee referrals
  2. Industry events
  3. Online campaigns (such as a “get to know” us series)
  4. Networking
  5. Host dial and learn webinars or other presentations

“Passive candidates who turn into hires usually come with several different touchpoints with your company, its culture and values,” says Brown. “If you execute your passive candidate strategy well, the candidate enters your company with a certain level of trust and familiarity and can visualize working for you. This often results in new hires who come up to speed, immerse themselves in the company culture and add value more quickly which nurtures a higher performer.”

If you contact a passive candidate, its best not to go in straight away with your pitch, this can often be off-putting, you need to play a longer game in order to successfully recruit. As they are not actively seeking a new job they may need to be ‘warmed up’ first before the hard sell, changing jobs can be a big move especially if they have been in a company for a long time. “Passive hires take more time to explore their options, determine what’s important to them and align the company values and culture to their own requirements before accepting an offer,” says Brown. “They come in fully knowing what they left behind and are looking forward to what’s ahead of them with your organization.”

But only 61% of employers currently have a strategy in place to recruit passive candidates, according to LinkedIn’s Global Recruiting Trends survey. “In a candidate-driven market, passive recruitment must be a priority,” says Kurt Rakos, founder and Partner at SkyWater Search Partners, a search firm dedicated to the placement of Sales, Marketing, IT, Accounting/Finance and HR related personnel.

Rakos and his team at Skywater Search Partners offer these seven ways to passively recruit passive candidates:

  1. Boost your brand: Why do your top performers stay with your company? Understand that and you have the key to attracting talent to your brand. The employment landscape is changing. Generation Y isn’t interested in a “job.” Millennials are looking for meaning in their career choice. Passive candidates want to work for a company that values its employees and promotes a positive culture. If your brand doesn’t match the aspiration of those candidates, you’ll fail to attract the high achievers you need.
  2. Get noticed: Passive candidates want to work for the best employers. Whether it’s a “Best Place to Work” award or positive ratings on LinkedIn, working hard on your culture will attract the interest of the top performers.
  3. Get onto social media: Create your own talent community by engaging with potential hires on social media. Share the latest news and issues affecting your industry and be ready to respond quickly to questions.
  1. Design an effective employee referral program: Employee referral programs should be the number one source of your quality hires. Who better to recruit or identify potential new employees than your existing team? Design a program that responds quickly to referrals and incentivises employees to get involved.
  2. Take advantage of technology: Use the latest in technology to support and streamline your recruiting efforts, allowing your HR team to focus on finding the best available talent. Pay special attention to the candidate experience. A lengthy application process, long-winded registration forms and slow responses to applicants guarantee that passive candidates will leave your pipeline long before you reach the interview stage. Don’t lose out on the chance to hire qualified candidates by hanging on to outdated processes and technology.
  3. Always be ready to hire quickly: Talent won’t hang around. If you find a potential top performer be ready to hire them before your competition snaps them up. The risk will be rewarded and show you are serious about hiring the best people to meet your business objectives.
  4. Work with a specialist recruiter: Creating a successful talent acquisition strategy takes time and effort. If you need to hire quickly, consider working with a specialist recruiter who understands your industry. Headhunters are in contacting with passive talent on a daily basis and have direct access to the candidates you need to propel your organisation forward.