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You have a job ad available, candidates apply and you sift through their applications that’s active hiring. Passive hiring on the other hand, is when you find a stand-out LinkedIn profile and you need that person on your team, so you reach out because you know a job is going to be opening up.

Defining Passive Candidates

finding the right person

So what exactly is a passive candidate? A passive candidate is a person that isn’t actively seeking a job but might still be considered for a position. They might have been found and passed on by a recruiter, stumbled upon on LinkedIn or referred to you by an employee. They differ from active candidates- applicants who are actively seeking and submitting job applications.

Finding Passive Candidates

Finding passive candidates can be tricky as they are not actively looking for a job and putting their resume out on job boards.

One way to find passive candidates is through social media. Search social media sites like LinkedIn and Facebook for the keywords you are looking in an applicant, those who have the skill set will appear before your eyes. By staying active on social media you can find candidates and what they’re doing in their everyday lives, and at work. Did they just publish something really cool? They’ll probably share it on their LinkedIn at the minimum.

Passive candidates may not have their resume plastered all over the web and job boards like active candidates. However, after they completed their last job search they might have left “open to recruiters” checked on LinkedIn, or left their resume up on Indeed for employers to find them. By typing in a skillset to Google, LinkedIn, or job boards you might find someone that fits the description even if they aren’t looking for a job.

Find out who you’re hiring and where they would be on the web- if you can set up an ad there. Know what the ideal candidate is looking for out of their career, and advertise that, not just whatever position is available. This can go beyond openings, but just by advertising your company. If you’re a leader in your industry people will want to work there, so get them hooked on you!

Network and ask employees for referrals! Networking can expand your own professional connections, but it can also help you fill open positions at your company. While networking take note of anyone interesting, keep their business card separately and when a position opens up reach out and see if they’re looking for a change. Employees may know people who aren’t looking for jobs, but rather have an idea of who is qualified for an open position.When asking for referrals, don’t ask about people looking for jobs but rather people with a particular skillset.

Recruiting and Hiring Passive Candidates

Passive candidates tend to be satisfied with their jobs, so you need to get their attention. Can you provide better pay? Work/life balance? Opportunity for advancement? A challenge? That’s what will sway a passive candidate your way.

When trying to appeal to passive candidates you will need to offer them something more than what they are already getting. Sometimes, the best way to appeal to a passive candidate is to offer something more than finical gain. For example, by offering a higher position, or tuition reimbursement candidates may find something more in your company that they didn’t realize they could have. jumping ship

Passive candidates are happy at work (most likely) so what can you offer to make their lives easier is the best way to get them on board. Examples include: work from home options, less late nights, weekends off, and other practices that might get people to jump ship.