Successful communication with candidates seems to be one of the most significant challenges for recruiters. Contrary to what it appears, not only IT recruiters face this issue. This problem concerns Polish market as well as the Western countries. The saying “war for talent” reflects it very well.
The lack of universal solutions seems to be the biggest obstacle. Some say that short messages work the best, others that longer messages have a higher response rate. Some prefer LinkedIn InMails, others, emails. There’s no golden solution applicable to everyone. Below, you can find several enjoyable suggestions and examples of successful messages taken from the Polish Sourcing Guide.
A personalized message doesn’t always have to include a candidate’s name. It’s all about convincing him/ her that we read their profile and we’re not sending a spam message. You can find an exceptional example below:
As a headhunter, I value helping others in professional development. Are you looking for a job in an interesting project or you’d like to change the environment? I invite you to my contacts. I send my greetings as a fan of Eluivette, Zelazny (though I prefer fantasy than SF) and D&D board game.
Most people wouldn’t know what the sender is relating to. However, the receiver knew precisely as he was a fan of a board game which he mentioned on his profile. The message above was sent as an invitation on LinkedIn. Here’s what happened next:
I have an interesting opportunity for DevOps in Katowice. Would you consider changing a job? It’s a medium company (developers’ teams are in Poland, Germany, and the operational team in on Malta). I’m looking for people not only because of their skills but also – interests. There’s a bookcase filled with board games and Carcassonne is a company’s favorite. Working there is really cool. I can send the details if you’re interested.
Have a great day!
Apparently, it was enough – the author not only received the response but also is in touch with this candidate. It just means that you don’t have to give all the job details in the first message.
Mateusz promptly noticed that a fully described profile helps to write a personalized message. The reality is a bit different though, more often profiles lack a lot of information, or they’re empty.
How to convince a candidate that they’re not one of many to whom we write?
- Try to include a person’s name (“Hello Jane” or “Good Morning Patrick”)
- Relate to a company where a candidate works, (e.g. “I don’t know if my opportunity will be better than your current job in Luxoft, but I thought it’s worth trying”)
A bit of humor never hurts
Though many recruiters have an earnest approach to their job, it’s worth trying to “play” when you contact a candidate for the first time. You can find a great example below; it’s a proof that humor helps to build a relationship with a candidate.
A candidate not only replied to this message but pointed out the last part accurately. Why? Because the joke related to statistics, a candidate’s industry. Such humor proves that a recruiter read job-related details on a candidate’s profile carefully.
Be careful about the jokes which might be monotonous for candidates. If you’re not an expert in the industry you recruit for, it’s better to ask someone who knows the subject (a colleague from such a department).
(Not) so formal style
Recently, during Social Recruiting Days, Sergej Zimpel presented the analysis of recruitment messages. It showed that though an informal style of a message doesn’t always mean receiving an answer, it’s far more effective. Of course, a lot depends on the industry, position, and language which we use when contacting a candidate. In case of doubts, it’s worth looking at a candidate’s style of writing on their profile.
Relational, not transactional approach
Recruiting messages are a kind of ultimatum. A person can reply positively and “win” participation in a recruitment process or refuse to respond and squander their chances. Remember that sourcing is about contacting passive candidates. From their perspective staying in a current company is a safe option and a recruitment process is always a risk.
That’s why convincing a potential candidate to a recruitment process takes time. Remember, that receiving an answer and scheduling a call, not selling the role, is the goal of approaching a candidate
Example no. 1
Message sent on LinkedIn.
A candidate wrote on the profile that he’s not interested in relocation to Poland. Below you’ll find his response.
Example no . 2
The message was sent on LinkedIn. Below you can find a candidate’s answer.
Nice to meet you. I hope that you have a great Tuesday.
I must admit that I’m impressed by your profile. You have recently graduated but already during the studies you have gained commercial experience, you even worked for the company from the USA. I’m curious if you had the opportunity to visit the office in America.
Maciej, from your profile I can see that you have been working as a Team Leader for two years that’s why I would like to invite you to join Beta District as a Team Lead Engineer.
Shortly about the company – they create advanced technologically and security solutions for Bitcoin payments and gambling platform. As a Team Leader, you will be in charge of leading the Full-Stack Developer’s team who work in Poznan or remotely.
Salary: SALARY PLN net B2B
City: Poznań or remotely
Maciej, I’m curious what do you think about my offer and are you free for a short call e.g. tomorrow at 3 PM to talk about it?
Have a nice day,
first of all, I would like to express my recognition about your work and actually reviewing my profile and message addressed directly only to my, not to 20 other candidates 🙂 I have rarely time to reply to offers, but not writing back to you would be an expression of disrespect for your time.
Example no. 3
The subject is untypical as it concerns cybersecurity. The message was supposed to resemble one of the most popular ways of breaking security and reaching sensitive data – “phishing.”
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We’d be pleased to meet and talk about the best practices in Cyber Security area.
We hope to see you soon!
Usually I don’t open links containing shortcuts. I managed, however, to see what’s hiding behind this link before I clicked it.
Thank you for contacting me and for sending this opportunity. I must admit it’s the first time I see a phishing message with a job opportunity!
I’ll read the details and send you my CV during weekend.
Example no. 4
A message sent to a candidate working in the recruitment industry.
I’m curious if you’d be prone to answer it.
hope that my message will be a pleasant change, as usually that’s you who stand on this side which I currently am 🙂
My name is Maciek and I’m a part of Bee Talents team. We are also doing recruitment in IT and are currently seeking a Tech Recruiter who would like to join our team. I said we, not I because I meant Kasia Michalak’s Team.
I used to work in a classic Recruitment Agency and I know particularly well how such job looks like. When I came to Bee Talents two years ago I set myself a goal that we will prove that recruitment can be done in a different way. With no targets, no candidates thefts, no sales, taking care both of candidate experience and client’s brand, revealing salary ranges and maintaining full transparency. The last one includes both offers and what is happening in Bee Talents.
The simple fact that our salary isn’t dependent of personal or team results but consist of salary base and revenue percentage proves that we’re focused on teamwork and competency exchange instead of competition.
I also think that it would be interesting for you to be able to use your great English skills, the most of our clients are from western countries, part of them build their teams in Poland and part of them in their country of origin.
What is more, we have a fully flexible work-time (i.e. we work max 40 hours per week but whenever you want) and unlimited remote work with computer provided by company. I believe it’s quite important from the point of view of young mother 🙂
Kasia, this message is already too long! Let me know if it sounds interesting and if so, maybe we can schedule a short (15-20 minutes) call today or tomorrow?
As always, I’m curious about your opinions. Do you have your favorite tips for successful communication with candidates? Can you share which methods work for you and which don’t? It would be great to read your pieces of advice so that we all could benefit from knowledge sharing.