recruit passive candidates

How to Write the Best Email to Recruit Passive Candidates

In Future of Work by Eric VidalLeave a Comment

You have a position opening and need to fill it fast. The good news is there are thousands of candidates out there perfect for the job. The bad news is only a select number of those individuals will make it to your applicant pool. Why? Because the rest of those candidates are passive, not searching for a new position at all. So how do you recruit passive candidates?

More than half of the applicant pool comes from active-job seekers through publicly posted job listings. Only a tiny 2 percent come from sourcing. However, there is power in the 2 percent. When the hiring occurs and contracts are made, only 20 percent of hires come through job listings and 15 percent are the result of sourcing.

Don’t let the absolute perfect candidate slip past you by offering them subpar recruiting emails. Instead, write recruiting emails that stand out from the depths of the inbox, sourcing only the best talent for your business. There are a few secrets to writing the best emails to recruit passive candidates. Let’s dive in.

The Power of Words

Your basic, can be sent to anyone, email isn’t going to get a reply. And the same lessons you’ve learned about sending emails before may or may not work when trying to recruit passive candidates. Augmented writing leader Textio describes some common myths we believe about these emails, myths you should avoid at all costs.

  • Brevity: Paragraph count has a more significant impact on response rate than length. Emails with several shorter blocks of text get a higher response than those with just one or two long paragraphs. All of this points towards going to length, instead of “keeping it short.”
  • Origin: Mentioning that you found your new candidate on LinkedIn is the same thing all the other recruiters do to get sent straight to the trash. Data shows that response rates drop by 80 percent when you use phrases such as, “I came across your profile on LinkedIn.”
  • Copy and Paste: Templates are great for simplifying tasks. However, this isn’t true for your recruiting emails. Personalization in your emails matters. In fact, you’ll see up to a 20 percent increase in your responses by referencing something unique about the candidate. You must prove that your candidate has something special that makes them perfect for your position.
  • Pass It On: Asking your candidate to pass your email on if it isn’t a fit will cause your chance of reply to drop by a whopping 50 percent. After all, if they’re a perfect fit, why would you want them to mention your position to someone else?
  • Strong CTA: A strong call to action can come off as pushy, dropping response rates by 25 percent. Don’t push individuals to follow-up. Instead, let them decide.

Overall, when it comes to words, it’s important to be thoughtful and intuitive. Take your time crafting your recruiting emails, giving your candidates a glimpse into your company’s culture. Your words have the power to make or break the next big thing that could happen for your company. Take care to ensure the right words are there when you click send.

Get Some Help With Textio to Recruit Passive Candidates

The right words don’t always come easy. Each individual will have language that engages them, entices them and makes them hit reply. How can you speak in a way that each candidate will appreciate? By asking for help from augmented writing.

Augmented writing allows you to know in advance how other individuals will react to your words by analyzing real-world hiring outcomes and recruiting emails. Why wouldn’t you want to use a tool like this to recruit passive candidates? The insight gathered shows you exactly what works and what doesn’t. There are plenty of successes that tell the story of what augmented writing can do for your business.

Johnson & Johnson used Textio to raise their recruiting email response rate by 25 percent. They’re also using the tool to write job posts that consistently draw 9 percent more women into their applicant pool, meaning 90,000 more women each year. Their success is increasing their ability to fill roles with top candidates who might otherwise be missed.

NVIDIA recently discovered faster fill rates when using Textio. They found that job descriptions with a Textio score of 70 or above fill roles 17 percent faster. But, even better, posts that score 90 or above fill in half the time. As their score increased, they also found that 28 percent more women applied for open positions than before.

Your words matter. The candidates you choose to move forward matter. Combine the two effortlessly by sending emails to recruit passive candidates that inspire action. There’s no room for guesswork when it comes to sending cold emails. Warm up your recruiting practice by using a tool like Textio and considering your candidate above all.

The original version of this article was first published on Future of Work.

Eric Vidal

Chief Marketing Officer at The Marketing Scope
Eric is the Chief Marketing Officer of The Marketing Scope and Editor at Converge, both BMG properties. He is also the acting SVP of Marketing at BMG and has ran marketing for companies of all sizes. He has extensive experience working to achieve measurable business results for organizations like IBM, Cisco, WebEx, Canon USA, Capgemini, adidas, Subaru, SAP and more. Connect with Eric on LinkedIn