Passive candidates make up about 80% of the working population, of this 80% there will be those who won’t be interested in any other opportunities but there will be those who are open to listening to opportunities you may have for them.

Here are a few ways you can reach out to passive candidates:

Have something to say.

Utilise your company blog, LinkedIn groups and other content outlets to talk about the industry. Think of the things that those passive candidates will be searching for, remember they aren’t actively looking for jobs, but will be looking for news/comments on the industry they work in.

Don’t try and be a recruiter, be an expert.

Top candidates don’t want to deal with recruiters trying to earn their fee; they want to engage with individuals with industry expertise who can understand the area they work in. Like the above point make sure what you have to say will engage those passive candidates. It is important not to push the candidate for applications, use this as a way to establish a relationship that you can build on.

Mine your databases.

You already have a great list of passive candidates, go back a couple of years and cross reference those old candidates with what they are doing now via LinkedIn. Whilst they may not have been suitable years ago they have now had the time to gain the necessary skills and experience.

Make a good first impression.

It is a compliment to be contacted by a recruiter, it assures the candidate they are valuable in the workplace and can start the thought process in a passive candidate to consider other opportunities. Take advantage of this first impression by thinking through the first contact, being genuine and not spamming the candidate.

Listen to candidates.

Money is often not the top motivator for candidates; the real motivators can vary greatly. Often passive candidates are passive, not because they love their job so much but because where they are is comfortable and works for them and their personal routine. Listen to your candidates and look at the job history to understand their core motivators, it could be something as simple as a shorter commute that allows them to be home earlier.

Let the candidate guide you.

Not every candidate knows what they are looking for so present them with opportunities, explaining the value each of them could bring to the candidate and use their response and reasons to help you find the right match. Ensure you don’t go for the hard sell when presenting jobs, use it as an opportunity to understand the candidate and their motivators better.