Here’s a hard truth: candidates are sick of LinkedIn. The best of them receive inMail after inMail with the promise of plucking them from their current roles in favour of fantastic opportunities with dynamic, growing companies. What are your chances when you’re the fifth recruiter to contact them this week?
With an estimated 79% of working professionals being passive candidates, we sorely need creative ways to reach out to them. Could these new tactics result in your next placement? Step away from the inMail and give it a shot!
1. Networking Events
If you’re looking for a candidate in a niche market, you’re unlikely to find a shining star on a generalist job board or CV database. Attend networking events local to the role you are working on; here you’re more likely to find candidates who can provide you with referrals, or better still, active candidates networking in search of their next career opportunity. Think about collaborating with the companies facilitating these networking events - there may be opportunities for your company to sponsor an event, which increases your exposure within the market overnight, and gives you the opportunity to be the ‘go-to’ consultant for individuals in attendance.
2. Referral Rewards
Operating a referral scheme for employees is by no means revolutionary; the first known referral scheme was put in place by Julius Caesar in 49BC, offering existing soldiers one third of their annually salary in exchange for each military worker placed. Try switching things around by offering a referral rewards scheme for candidates - this way your calls to candidates happy in their current role are by no means wasted, as you provide them with an incentive to pass on your details to disgruntled colleagues.
3. Smarter Advertising
The conversion rate for online advertising varies hugely and often results in a less specific outcome, so favour an approach more focused on the locality of the roles you are working to fill. Diverse candidate groups respond to advertising in different ways, and often take a completely dissimilar approach to their job searching.
For example, candidates in the Healthcare and Nursing fields tend to be more responsive to recommendations and word of mouth, therefore advertising through offline channels often reaps better rewards, create a leaflet and post in local areas where your candidate pool congregate. Candidates in the PR and social media fields are more likely to respond to online advertising, but try and keep things fresh with new platforms; Jobgram offers a service where they’ll produce a branded infographic targeted to those in the media industry, giving users the choice to ‘regram’ and pass on to their peers.
4. Keeping Track
Engaging with candidates you’ve spoken with previously is key. Constant and dedicated use of a database tool such as Firefish can put you at a huge advantage when searching for candidates. Use the ‘follow-up’ function to remind you when a contractor is becoming available, to give you a nudge to touch base with a candidate going back to work after maternity leave, or simply to draw your attention to a candidate months after your initial contact.
A sure-fire game changer! Gamification works by encouraging candidates to engage in game-like behaviours, in non-game contexts. The Marriot Hotel group adopted this approach, providing users with a game similar to The Sims, in an effort to drive traffic to their careers Facebook page; currently the page sits at 1.1 million likes.
Now we don’t all have the kind of resources needed to create an iOS app; but think about using simple games through channels like Facebook or Twitter. Offering a prize targeted to your candidate pool will also increase traffic; a subscription to a well-known tech magazine for IT candidates, or a place on a sought after training course for Healthcare candidates should do the trick.
Through this process you can create an environment where candidates are continually engaged with your brand in preference to other recruiters, increasing the candidate pool you have available. These existing users then go on to interact with their friends and colleagues through this platform, building your brand for you, and ultimately making your job easier as your reputation builds and candidates want to engage with you.
Have you used any of these methods before? How did they work for you? Leave a comment and share your ideas!
Credit: Image from jannoon028 via freedigitalphotos.net
Not ready to move away from LinkedIn? Make sure that you optimise every second you spend sourcing with our 3 stage guide.
Heidi is PhD student at the University of Aberdeen. Her research focuses on the issues surrounding the recruitment of patients into clinical trials.