According to a LinkedIn Talent Trends report, 70% of the global workforce is passive. So, as a recruiter or hiring manager, you either need to fight hard for your piece of the tiny 30% or get creative about making that passive majority intrigued. Here are some ways to do it.

1. Become a networking master

Being a master at networking means being great at two-way communication—not being a stalker. Engage in conversations with everyone, even people you meet at the gym, a fundraising event or while waiting in line at a store.  Tell them about your company and your passion for recruiting while also asking them about what draws them to certain companies or jobs. Even if individuals you speak with aren’t in the market for a new job, be genuine enough that they want to give you referrals. Join forums and groups, and be authentic in your discussions. Obviously, engaging potential candidates on social media—including YouTube and Snapchat—can be very powerful. But the key is engaging. Ask for input and provide useful information and advice.

2. Make your job descriptions compelling

Treat your job description as an ad and give it a great headline. Rather than the job title being the first thing people read, think about some ways you can draw people in. A dull, uninspired job description equates to a dull, uninspired job. Convey your company culture and use an inviting voice that sells people on why it’s a great place to work. Stay away from tired language like, the qualified candidate will possess… Try something with more flavor like, Looking for someone with a passion for design or with a powerful intellectual curiosity. Try using video and great graphics. And don’t go overboard on the details. Put your top few serious requirements that you’re unwilling to compromise on in the description, but don’t list unnecessary restrictions that could alienate good people.

3. Treat candidates like customers

Just as you aim to be the answer to your customers’ needs when marketing your products or services to them, you need to use the same philosophy to attract job candidates. In your job descriptions and employment branding, you want to let candidates know what you can do for them and why your company is the best choice. And, since 40% of people looking for job opportunities turn to company websites, your site needs to be just as compelling and easy to navigate for candidates as it is for clients and prospective customers. Attracting great talent means being attentive and explaining what you can do for the job candidate as opposed to the other way around.

4. Make your application process short and sweet (and strong)

As mentioned, you will have a compelling job description to draw people in. Once they’re there you don’t want to lose them by making the application process too complicated. At this stage, you only want to ask for the essentials. Make it simple to complete your short form and attach their resume or personal website (there are great applicant tracking systems for this), while you also make a strong statement about why they should not leave before hitting that submit button. You want them to feel like they’re taking the first step toward an incredible life change. So, once they hit that button, they feel a vested interest.

5. Emphasize what’s working

Talk to the best 5 – 10 people you’ve hired within the past year or so. Ask them how they discovered the job, what they liked about the job description and the company, why they applied, and why they accepted the offer. Ask how the job compares to previous jobs. What do they like about it and how do they describe the job and the company to their friends? Use the information to highlight why your company is a great place to work and place it on your website, in your job descriptions, on your social media sites and in personalized emails to your talent network.

Remember the goal is to be compelling and engaging. Think about the things that would make you sit up and take a notice of a company’s website, job description or invitation to discuss a potential job opportunity and let it guide your efforts. You want to draw people in. Since many strong candidates are likely to be content with their current jobs and not actively looking for a new opportunity, drawing them out with some of these methods will be a necessity for getting the best people on your team.

For more information about successful recruiting strategies, call us at 415-835-0202 or email us at

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