E-mailing Passive Candidates in the Age of AI

If you’re a recruiter trying to catch the attention of a passive job candidate, you may feel like Sisyphus of ancient Greek mythology – the man who was doomed to forever push a large rock up a hill, only to have it roll back down again.

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In other words, you may feel that it’s an exercise in futility. And – no doubt about it – catching the eye of passive job candidates is tough: they are inundated with emails of all types. Yours is simply one more that clutters up their inbox, especially if they don’t have any interest in leaving their current place of employment.

But don’t give up hope. All is not lost. You can get their attention. It’s all in the approach.

  • Out with the old, in with the new

If you have email templates that you have been using for years, now is the time to get rid of them. They are most likely outdated and do not address the concerns and attitudes that passive candidates have today.

  • Be honest and sincere

Try to put yourself in the place of the candidate. What kind of approach would you appreciate the most? It probably is one that is simple, clear, and direct.

You want the email to be professional, but not too stiff or formal. Nor do you want to be overly familiar, avoiding a back-slapping kind of approach. A straightforward, authentic approach works best. You don’t want to use any gimmicks or any kind of sales pitch. Avoid redundancy or filler. Each line should carry its weight in getting the message across.

Read the email aloud. This really helps you to get an idea of how it sounds and the impression it makes.

  • Double check for errors

The email needs to show professionalism. Check for any spelling or grammatical mistakes. Don’t use abbreviations. Check to make sure you have spelled the candidate’s name correctly.

  • Be specific

Let the person know what they have to gain from reading the email. Avoid any vague language or descriptions. Writing something like “this is a great opportunity” really doesn’t tell the person about the job. It is better to explain what makes the job worth their interest and what it has to offer, such as salary and benefits.

While you do want to put some details in the email, you also need to be careful that you don’t make it too long. It should be short and to the point, with only the most relevant information – who you are, what the job is, and why you are contacting the person. Include the title of the job and the next step for the person to take if they’re interested.

  • Do your research

You are much more likely to get a response if you contact a person about a job that fits their particular skills and experience. To ensure a job is applicable, however, you need to do some research on their background first on social media sites or professional networks.

  • Write and rewrite

Writing well takes work and time. To make your email compelling, you should first write a rough draft and then rewrite it a few times to get it just right. Quality is more important than quantity.

  • Make sure they know you’re human

We have to admit, we found this great tip in an article we read recently and unfortunately we can’t find it now. The recruiter/author said she had great success with her emails to passive candidates when she wrote in the subject line: I am a person, not a bot and I have a career opportunity that might suit you.

This approach worked for her, she said, because too many people receive to many AI-generated emails and automatically delete them. Beat the bots at their own game and declare your humanity!

We know where the good candidates hang out! Reach out to the recruiters at the Helpmates branch nearest you to learn more about our staffing services.

Helping Your Employees with Their Back-to-School Blues

Back to school is here! Children abandon playgrounds, the beach and video games and return to the classroom. It’s a big change not just for kids but for working parents as well, requiring parents to adjust their schedules for things such as taking children to school, attending parent-teacher meetings, school open houses, sporting events, and other extracurricular activities, as well as volunteering to help out with school-related activities.

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Both parents work in about two-thirds of all households with children, and they spend more time caring for their children than earlier generations.  In a survey of 1,000 working parents, 85 percent said they were surprised by the challenges that arose when their kids returned to school, with the challenge cited by most parents as being home when their children returned from school. Other concerns included attending school activities and meeting other parents.

It’s no surprise that stress levels for parents jump when kids return to school. What makes matters even worse is that there is little allowance made by employers to help parents through this more hectic period, as surveys have shown. But there are things employers can do to assist their workers in handling the return to school, not only helping workers but themselves as well — accommodating employees helps with morale and retention.

Flexibility

One of the primary ways employers can help is by putting flexible scheduling practices in place. For many parents, flexible scheduling isn’t just something that is nice to have, but essential for them to maintain a good work-life balance, to meet their obligations to both their work and family. Flexible schedules help both employers as well as employees.

For example, flexible scheduling and allowing an employee to work remotely would enable a parent to leave work early to attend a conference with a teacher and then finish a project at home afterward.

But for flexible scheduling to work well, it requires good communication between managers and employees as workers’ schedules change depending on school events or other obligations.

Scheduling Work Events

Another way employers can accommodate parents of school-age children is by planning work events during the day, rather than after work. For example, social events such as employee happy hours, team dinners or workshops can be scheduled earlier in the day to allow parents time to pick up children from school or other school-related activities.

Instead of beginning happy hour at 5:00, companies can start at 4:00, team dinners can become team lunches, and workshops can end a little earlier.

A Culture That Values Work-Life Balance

Enabling all workers to have a healthy work-life balance is important. It helps with employee morale, productivity, and retention, and so should be a part of the company culture. Companies need to show they value a good work-life balance by incorporating events for employees and their families as part of the company operations, for example, with company picnics or holiday parties.

Communication and Feedback

To determine the effectiveness of flexible scheduling, supervisors need to solicit ongoing feedback from workers. To do this, the company can send out short surveys to employees, allowing them to respond anonymously with comments and suggestions.

Company leaders can also lend their support by showing they recognize the challenges parents face. Managers can do this through emails, even discussing how they handle the demands of parenting and school.

Need someone to come in for even just a couple of hours one or two days a week in order to help a working parent attend a school function, or stay home with a sick child? Contact the Helpmates branch nearest you, let us know the skills you need and we’ll send you a talented temporary associate!

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