If you’re looking to maximize your recruitment efforts to source the best available talent in your industry, you know the top candidates aren’t necessarily the ones who are actively looking for new employment options. Reaching these passive candidates is a challenge that in the past meant spending hours of time, money, and resources.
As the job market bounces back following the COVID-19 pandemic, the unemployment rate continues to drop—meaning fewer talented candidates are actively looking for a new role. This presents a challenge to recruiters: effectively engaging passive candidates.
How to Engage Passive Candidates
Passive candidates are more difficult to engage, but that shouldn’t deter you from doing so if the candidate checks all of your boxes. The added difficulty, however, makes it critical to have a clear plan of how to engage these candidates—and how to do so effectively.
Emphasize Your Employer Brand
Having a strong employer brand can greatly help you engage passive candidates, especially if your brand and values resonate with them. Candidates are more likely to listen to what you have to offer if they can easily identify with your brand and see themselves fitting within it.
This comes through all facets of the process; your brand story and values should be woven into your candidate communication, job description, interview process, and beyond. If a passive candidate can easily recognize your brand through your actions, it can make a huge difference in making them consider your organization.
Create a Memorable Experience
Going along with emphasizing your brand, you should strive to create an excellent candidate experience that your passive candidate can’t ignore. While you should always strive to create a superb candidate experience, it becomes especially critical for candidates that need a bit of a nudge.
This comes by creating a personalized experience. Use authentic and personal messaging when communicating with the candidate to show them that you truly value what they can bring to your organization. If you share a connection, consider reaching out to them to learn more and tailor your initial communication based on what information they provide.
Additionally, make the experience as seamless as possible. Be flexible, respect their time, and don’t take too long scheduling interviews and following up.
Work Alongside Hiring Managers
Getting hiring managers involved in the process quickly can help passive candidates get additional context on the role and who they’ll be working alongside. Collaborating with hiring managers is always best practice, and it goes a long way when it comes to passive candidates.
How AI Can Help Engage Passive Candidates
You can only hire who you can reach, which is where artificial intelligence methods come in. AI recruiting tools allow professionals to automate key aspects of outreach and hiring workflow, allowing you to engage, screen, and evaluate passive candidates more efficiently and effectively. AI also removes the bias aspect, ensuring via algorithms (which remove the human factor) that you target the exact candidates ideal for your open positions.
Here are some ways AI can help you reach passive candidates.
Get In Front of the Passive Candidates Most Likely to Respond
Tools such as programmatic recruitment, as used in PandoIQ, take human error and guesswork out of trying to find candidates who might be receptive to your posting. When you use AI, you can place ads where they’re likely to perform best based on algorithms and advanced data science, and reach the eyes of people who will take the plunge to click and explore.
AI methods can determine how long someone has been at a current position, whether or not they’ve been promoted during their time at their current company, and the general direction of their company’s success. With this data in hand, you can compile a list of candidates who will be receptive to a new job opportunity.
AI makes it possible to hit that magic combination of the right type of job seeker, on the right sites, at the right time by using algorithms that tap into keywords, current job and company, industry, and other attributes. By using machine learning to determine where you post your ads, you will get your postings in front of not only more passive candidates but also the passive candidates who are ideal matches for your company.
Attract Attention on Social Media
It’s not news that social media sites are the main targets for passive candidates. According to a Pew Research study on social media, over 80% of adults ages 18-49 are active on at least one social media platform as of 2021. Younger Millennials and Gen Z are most active, with 84% using social media routinely.
Since this demographic is less likely to attend networking events and seek out jobs via traditional boards, it’s key to target them via social media sites-where they spend most of their time. All it might take is a well-designed and worded job posting popping up in their feed at the right time of day to spark their interest.
On these sites, you can use AI to place ads that target job seekers via their feed based on their profile data, location, and interests. Ads then link the user directly to the job details page on your site. Additionally, ad exposure will then be generated through shares and likes in the user’s network.
Adjust in Real-Time to Reach More Passive Candidates
When the recruitment process is automated, you are able to see results in real-time. Tweak your ads, job postings, and strategies as needed if not enough people (or the wrong types of candidates) are applying.
If you see that the candidates who are responding to your ads are a bit below the ideal experience level, you can increase the years of experience required for the position. If you find your applicants are overqualified, you can edit the skills needed. Using AI means daily results, which you can then react to and change your strategy accordingly. This data gathering, which used to take weeks (if not months) is now automatic, allowing you to hone in on the precise applicants you want.
Using AI tools for job ad placement takes a fraction of the time and money it takes to scour social media sites and job boards in order to find candidates who may or may not be a good fit. With AI technology, you can create a well-crafted and worded ad, post it in the most efficient places, and wait for ideal candidates to contact you.