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How To Effectively Recruit Passive Candidates

Recruiting passive candidates isn’t easy, but it’s worth the effort. Here’s how you can effectively tap into the passive talent pool.

When it comes to recruiting, there are two types of candidates: active and passive. Active candidates are actively looking for a new job and are easier to find. But did you know that they only make up 30% of the global workforce? That means you’re missing out on a ton of top talent when you don’t target passive candidates — those who aren’t actively looking for a new opportunity. Not only are these candidates 17% less likely to require skill development opportunities than their active counterparts, but they’re also 120% more likely to want to have an impact on their organization. Plus, they’re already successful at performing a similar role, so you know they’re presumably already a strong fit for the position.

Finding and successfully recruiting currently employed candidates can be more challenging than hiring active talent, but it’s not impossible. Passive candidates are often willing to take on a new position if the opportunity is better than their current position. In fact, 99% of employed professionals would be open to interviewing if approached, and 89% are open to new job opportunities.

So, how can you effectively recruit passive candidates?

recruit passive candidates

Where and how to find passive candidates

Navigating the search for passive candidates can often feel like looking for a needle in a haystack. These individuals aren’t actively seeking a new job, but their talent and experience make them incredibly valuable potential recruits. So, where do you find these hidden gems? Let’s delve into proven strategies for discovering these potential candidates.

Targeted Sourcing

Begin by identifying the specific skills, qualifications, and experiences your company is looking for. Use tools like LinkedIn, industry-specific platforms (Dribbble, Stack Overflow, Github), and job boards to find potential candidates who match the qualifications you’re looking for but may not be actively seeking a new job.

💡 More sourcing tips


Attend industry conferences, meet-ups, and other networking events. These gatherings are filled with individuals who may not be actively job hunting, but might be interested if the right opportunity presents itself.

💡 Conferences to attend this year

2023 Talent Acquisition Conferences

2023 Product Design Conferences to Attend as a Recruiter

Employee Referrals

Your current employees can be a great source for identifying passive candidates. They are likely connected to talented individuals who may be persuaded by the right opportunity, even if they are not currently seeking a new position.

How to reach out to passive candidates

Initiating the first contact with passive candidates is both a science and an art. Since they aren’t actively seeking new opportunities, your approach needs to be personalized, enticing, and respectful of their current position. But how can you pique their interest without coming off as intrusive? In this section, we’ll explore key strategies for reaching out to passive candidates and how to effectively stir their curiosity about potential opportunities within your organization.

Personalized Communication

When reaching out to passive candidates, make sure to personalize your message. Explain why you’re reaching out to them specifically and highlight aspects of their experience or skills that caught your attention.

Discuss Career Goals

An estimated 65% of candidates lose interest in jobs due to bad interview experiences, so don’t pitch the job immediately or expect these passive candidates to have thoroughly researched the company. Instead of focusing solely on the job opening, engage candidates in a conversation about their career goals. Show them how the opportunity you’re offering aligns with their aspirations and could provide them with the growth they’re looking for.

Promote Company Culture

Present your company as a great place to work. By highlighting the company’s values, work-life balance, benefits, and career advancement opportunities, you can improve your chances of hiring a qualified candidate three-fold. This can often be a significant factor for passive candidates who might be satisfied in their current role but could be tempted by a more enticing work environment.

How to create a candidate-friendly interview process

The interview process can make or break a candidate’s decision to join your organization. For passive candidates who aren’t necessarily eager to leave their current positions, it’s even more crucial to create an experience that respects their time, values their expertise, and leaves a positive impression about your organization. This section will guide you on how to create a candidate-friendly interview process that not only assesses the capabilities of your potential hires, but also positions your company as an attractive place to work.

Streamline Your Hiring Process

Make sure your hiring process is as efficient and straightforward as possible. Reducing delays and unnecessary steps in the process can help maintain the candidate’s interest and motivation.

Maintain Regular Communication

Keep the candidate informed throughout the process. This can help them feel valued and engaged, reducing the likelihood they lose interest or accept another offer.

Offer Support

Especially for candidates who may not have been through a hiring process in some time, providing resources or guidance (e.g., what to expect in interviews, who they’ll be meeting, etc.) can ensure they’re well-prepared and feel comfortable throughout the process.

Recruiting the right people for the job

In conclusion, while the process of attracting, engaging, and recruiting passive candidates might seem daunting, the advent of new technologies is making it easier than ever. A tool like Betterleap can be a game-changer in your recruitment process.

Betterleap is an AI-powered outbound recruiting platform that offers comprehensive sourcing and outreach solutions all in one place. It’s designed to streamline your recruitment workflow, freeing up more time for you to focus on engaging with potential candidates and less on administrative tasks. By leveraging AI capabilities, Betterleap can help you effectively target and reach out to passive candidates, making the process more efficient and successful.

In a world where top talent is often not actively looking for a job, the use of a platform like Betterleap ensures that you’re not missing out on exceptional individuals who could bring tremendous value to your organization. It’s not just about filling positions – it’s about finding the right fit for your company. So why not take the leap and see what Betterleap can do for your recruitment strategy?

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