HR Blog

February 18, 2022 | Olaide Bakare, PHRi

As highlighted in the article on How to Fix Your Recruitment Problem, one of the most effective ways to attract top candidates to your organization is to include passive recruitment as part of your talent acquisition strategies.

Passive candidates are those who currently have a job and are not actively looking for a new one but who would be open to a new career opportunity under the right circumstances. For an HR department, it involves a delicate balance between being pushy and being interesting enough to get the potential hire to take a second look at what the organization is offering.

Here are some tips for passive recruitment:

Leverage Social Media To Source For Passive Candidates

This sounds like a given, the power of social media cannot be over emphasized. In this day and age, just about everyone is on social media. It is a cost-effective approach and the largest database for finding talent.

Platforms such as LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter can be useful for passive recruitment, helping you source potential candidates. On LinkedIn, you can source candidates through searching profiles for specific job roles or titles, or you could reach out to employees of certain known companies who you think would be a fit. On Facebook, you can browse professional groups to see if any of the members catch your attention through their posts or public information. On Twitter, you can search hashtags or companies to locate people who are in the industry and making an impression.

When you make the move and reach out to the potential candidate, be sure to make your value proposition known right away. This would help emphasize any gaps that they may be experiencing with their current organization and potentially spark interest.

Improve Your Employer Brand

Employer branding is a hot topic in recruiting. It is basically how candidates perceive you as an employer. Passive candidates tend to have more interest in a proposition if the company reaching out to them is a brand that aligns with their own values and goals.

For example, if your organization has a reputation for being involved in volunteering activities or community engagement, candidates who strongly share these values may be interested in working there. Another potential employer value-add can include being known for professional development and leadership opportunities, which can attract candidates who are seeking such growth in their career.

You need to find out whether your employer brand is being perceived the way you want it and whether it is accessible to your targeted candidates. You can go on social media and see if your organization has a strong online presence and what people are saying about it. You can also monitor job portals or review sites where people can anonymously review your organization. What are your current employees saying about the organization? What have past employees said about it? Did they mention why they left? It is important that you collect this information and find ways to improve your employer brand.

Create An Easy and Quick Application Process

When you are targeting passive job seekers, know that they do not have time for long and tedious application processes. So, when a candidate shows interest in a position, you will need to act quickly since they may not necessarily need the job. This may entail working around their schedule. Flexibility is key.

If they reach out to you, be prepared to take action right away before they lose interest or second-guess their decision. Do not wait for candidates to set up a meeting, instead, take the initiative to get on their calendar within days of your phone call.

However, while it is important to keep the process moving quickly, be sure to go through your normal interview procedure before making an offer. Moving quickly does not mean throwing caution to the wind.

Develop A Relationship With Candidates

This is a very important one! A successful passive recruiter knows that, in the end, everyone is a passive candidate. With that in mind, not only is it important to have a positive online footprint, but you should also develop a good relationship with the candidates you interviewed and connected with, especially the promising ones.

This will make it easier for them to respond to you about a future opportunity. A good way to make it easier is having an applicant tracking system. An ATS will help you to manage your contacts and stay updated on their most recent career moves and interests.


In today’s job market, if you are looking to hire junior to associate employees and interns, the pool of active candidates will be more than enough. However, if you require an experienced engineer or a seasoned software developer, finding and pursuing passive candidates may prove more fruitful than posting a job offer.

Smart recruiting tips like the ones shared in the previous article and this one would save you the trouble of endless interviews and increase your chances of winning valuable talents.

Leave a Reply