Why Warm Candidates are Important and How to Find Them

Sourcing new candidates is exciting, and finding the perfect candidate for a role is gratifying, but not every great candidate you source is going to slot straight into a job. These existing candidates go into your database, and every day they’re in it, you run the risk of losing them to your competition. That’s why it’s crucial to keep these candidates engaged and ‘warm’. The more invested they feel in you, the more likely they are to stick with you during a long job search.

How Can I Keep My Candidates Warm?

Contact is key! Recruiters are busy people, and don’t have the time to be constantly on the phone to existing candidates. However, contact doesn’t have to mean that. It’s a good idea to schedule a semi-regular check in with each candidate to see whether their skills or needs have changed, but besides that, a lot of candidate engagement can be done with email and mailing lists. Send out a bi-weekly email that is relevant to the candidate with the latest information on new jobs/developments in their sector. Perhaps include a link to a document or blog that they can use to improve themselves ahead of their next interview. The important thing is to continue showing your worth to the candidate and remind them that you’re working to find the best job for them.

Warm Candidates = Fast Placements

When the perfect job does come along, a warm candidate is a joy to place. The cold calling is done and you already know their strengths, weaknesses, and needs. All you need to do is take your candidate out of the oven and present them to your client with a flourish; ‘Here’s one I made earlier’. Not only does this increase the ROI on the job for yourself, it also establishes you in your client’s eyes as someone who can make good placements quickly. The challenge that presents itself is how to keep those candidates warm, engaged, and ready to go, when they’ve been on your books for more than a few weeks.

Engaged Candidates Source For You

A well-engaged candidate can also act as a sourcing tool for your business. I know that the last time I was looking for the job, I sang the praises of any recruiter who showed they had read my CV properly and identified what it was I really wanted from a job. Imagine if you had a pool of 100 engaged candidates, all telling their job-hunting friends about this great recruiter they know. Some of those friends are bound to come to you when they begin their job hunt, and if you treat them the same as their friend, they will do the same for you again, and again. 

Don’t Let a Candidate Cool On You

The average worker will change jobs over 10 times in their career, so it doesn’t make sense to cut ties with a candidate who isn't currently available for a role when they may be on the lookout for a new job in two or three years’ time. Schedule in a little time to give them a call, or send a personalised email every 6 months to check that they’re still happy in their role and whether they’ve picked up any new skills. This not only keeps your database up to date, it also keeps your personal brand at the forefront of the candidate’s mind. This way they will continue to promote your services to their peers and you’ll be the first business they think of when it’s time to move.

Keeping your existing candidates engaged can be a challenge at first, but if you put the correct steps in place (or even automate those steps within your database) then the returns are potentially massive. Not only will you be able to make placements better, you can attract new talent, and keep your best prospects away from your competitors at the same time. 

Want to learn more? We cover this subject in detail in our whitepaper ‘Creating a Great Candidate Journey’ which you can download by clicking on the link below. 

build a great candidate journey

Alex Blott

Alex is a freelance marketer and podcast host working in Glasgow.

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