8 Skills Recruiters need to Source the Passive Candidates

By Published June 26, 2017

When trying to fill the open job position passive candidates are some of the most qualified people to choose. To be a good recruiter, you must be both a good head hunter and an excellent judge of character. Research is the backbone of the sourcing process, involved in almost every stage. However, passive candidate sourcing demands little more than that – it needed recruiters to be more active in their pursuit.

passive candidate sourcing

Passive candidate sourcing 101 – Critical recruiter skills and competencies

The following factors represent the skills a recruiter needs to possess to recruit passive candidates for open job position from middle to senior management level. The definition of a “passive candidate” is one who is not actively looking for jobs. Therefore, the recruiter must reach out with an email, text message or phone call to attract the candidate.

1. Knowledge of real job requirements

It is imperative for a good recruiter to have a clear understanding of the “actual” work that needs to be performed, rather than rely solely on experience and skills to evaluate competency. With this knowledge, recruiters can identify how strong the candidate is based on what they have achieved. They are also better able to defend their potential candidates from weak interviewers, and as a result, make more placements.

2. Counselor to candidates

Smart candidates look to the recruiter as someone who understands the market, the job and someone who can provide career advice and counseling. The expertise to guide and counsel candidates into making the right decision is a critical skill. While it must be used with thoughtfulness and not impaired, those who perform this job well make more placements and those who are not let their best candidates slip away.

3. Partner with hiring manager clients

Recruiters who are partners have more control in decision-making and are seen as coaches and advisors to the recruitment team. Partners send in the fewest number of candidates per hire. Also, nearly 100% of their candidates are put into consideration by organizations without hesitation.

4. Ability to cold call

Cold calling is a part of passive candidate sourcing. It largely involves hunting candidates through semantic searching of resume databases and social networks. Call reluctance is the despair of most corporate recruiters, preventing them from naturally picking up the phone and conversing with strangers (who can be prospective hires). If a recruiter is not comfortable to make dozens of cold calls every day, he or she won’t be able to recruit passive candidates on a consistent basis.

5. Ability to obtain high-quality referrals

While cold calling is a critical candidate sourcing skill, converting these people into candidates and getting two to three referrals from each is how recruiters can maximize their performance. Networking is the primary means to find the right passive talent. And, those who know to convert cold phone screens into a hot list of great referrals will make best and most placements.

6. Search engine marketing

Candidate segmentation and narrowcasting are significant elements of passive candidate sourcing. It means placing adverts where they can be found or seen by someone using a search engine. Recruiters need to rank themselves high on this factor, even if they do not know how to conduct search engine optimization – nevertheless, they can outsource this to experts.

7. Make a transition from Boolean to Semantic Search

A new enhancement in resume database from Boolean to semantic search makes finding relevant talent easier and more efficient than ever before. It helps recruiters to access more search results in less time without the need to be a professional on the position. Semantic search lets’ recruiter to apply related synonyms or related terms to each keyword to expand the query and deliver the result.

8. Applicant control

Applicant control is the most critical aspect of passive candidate sourcing. From the first call to the close, applicant control empowers the recruiter to lead the conversation, negotiate offers based on career moves instead of compensation, get more referrals and avoid counter offers.

Recruiters must be in a position to overcome whatever hardships they are experiencing to keep their candidates interested and close the deal. The need for new recruiting skills is changing much faster than most organizations are responding. Whether it is a corporate or external recruiting manager, one must figure out if they are ahead or behind their competition.

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