Top 10 Ways to Source Passive Candidates

Aug 29, 2017 - Joe Matar
It tends to just be recruiters and active candidates that agonize over the intricate details of their LinkedIn profile and resume. The quality coders, marketers and sales reps that you’re looking for usually don’t have the time (or inclination) to constantly update their social profiles with all the skills they’re learning. Even people that are actively looking, and are regularly updating their resume may well forget to list relevant skills. Writing a resume is hard. Forgetting stuff is not! Keep all of this in mind when you’re sourcing and reviewing new candidates. Candidates are not professional resume writers, and we shouldn’t expect them to be. This is OK though – you’re hiring the person, not the resume! If you’re looking for passive candidates, don’t be surprised to see LinkedIn information that’s heavily out of date. These candidates aren’t actively looking for new work, so they have no motivation to update their profile and list all their skills and experience. Fortunately, you can use your own knowledge and experience to glean insights from the social profiles of passive candidates. Here’s an example of how this would work: From your experience, you know that typical VP Sales candidates with 5 years experience have certain skills. While "candidate x" that you have just found doesn’t list these skills in her profile, it’s likely that she would have all (or at least some) of them, and that she would be a good fit for your role. To truly ascertain whether someone is a good fit then, you need to do one of two things:

Go deep

Many recruiters pride themselves on "Sherlock Holmes" esque detective skills. If someone's LinkedIn is threadbare, then you need to go deep. Search for references, tweets and blogs from your target candidate and see if you can glean information that will help you see whether they're truly a fit.

Talk to them

If someone looks like they could be the real deal, chances are that they are. The quicker you get someone on the phone and start asking them more specific interview questions, the quicker you'll know whether the opportunity is worth pursuing. This is just one of the key considerations that sourcing teams need to think through when they think about putting in place a best-in-class sourcing process that will uncover candidates who may not be looking for jobs. We've put together an infographic to detail the other areas that it's important to think through, the tactics that can help you identify and engage top talent, and the metrics that will help you understand whether you're performing at the best possible level or not -- not just for passive candidates, but for all searches. Ben Slater is VP of Growth at Beamery, the new standard in Recruitment CRM & Marketing software. He has written for publications like the Guardian, Next Web and Venturebeat, and sits on the EMEA Board for the Candidate Experience Awards, an organization dedicated to improving the application experience for candidates. Follow Beamery on Twitter.

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