Want to attract passive candidates? Video is the key.

If you’re a recruiter, you’re facing just about the most challenging recruiting landscape ever. And after two years of lockdown during the pandemic we’re now seeing the effects of the Great Resignation, with59% of companies reporting that they experienced an increase in turnover.” Job-seekers today have a wealth of choices. Unemployment rates are low and vacancies are at a record high. With an increase in permanently remote work, geographical restraints rarely play the role they once did. 

Recruiting during the post-COVID Great Resignation is tougher than ever, according to Jonathan Heckel, Senior Recruiter for Atlantic Union Bank. Potential candidates have been worn down by the past two years and are simply not applying in the same numbers as before. “We’re receiving fewer qualified applications, which means we have to source more roles than ever. And finding passive candidates who are willing to learn about a new opportunity is very time-consuming and can be exhausting for our recruiting team,” said Heckel.  

Recruiters are not only faced with finding passive candidates, but they must also tell those potential candidates a compelling story about why they should want to join their company. This requires them to create more content than ever before to answer job-seeker questions and speak to their needs in the places where passive candidates are spending their time – like social media. And job-seekers’ needs have not been untouched by the pandemic. 

Concerns about flexibility, work-life balance, company culture and remote work are top of mind for job-seekers when it comes to finding new work. And while these may not necessarily be brand new concerns they are certainly experiencing a surge of importance due to the pandemic. For instance, while employees may have always had a desire for flexibility, it wasn’t necessarily something that was on the table— there’s been an 83% increase in job posts mentioning flexibility since 2019.

What does that mean for recruiters? 

It requires recruiters to put themselves in the shoes of potential candidates. If someone is thinking about a job change they will likely start searching online related to their job interests, companies they might want to know better and where their friends and contacts might be working. All of this means that recruiters need to ensure that the content they want potential candidates to see is readily accessible.

But it’s hard to gain insights into a company unless you know someone who works there, suggests Heckel. 

“Any window into what a company’s culture is really like is helpful and provides an insider’s perspective. Job seekers often view company marketing materials as suspect, so content that is fresh and feels authentic can set you apart. People do research prospective employers, but also want to discover the information they seek with the least effort possible,” said Heckel. 

How should recruiters think about creating content?

We’re in a time that has brought a lot of change and will continue to bring change. That means recruiting materials need to constantly be refreshed to account for what job-seekers are looking for in their next position.

But that’s easier said than done. 

Churning out content regularly when you may not have the budget, content ideas or bandwidth to do so can be a challenge!  

If you want to attract top-tier candidates, you have to create top-tier content that will draw them in— and video is often the best way to stand out with job-seekers these days. 

 A majority of the workforce is now Gen Z or Millennials, and the way they want to consume information is different from the generations before them. 

First and foremost, Gen Z and Millennials are likely to turn to digital solutions when they’re looking for answers. But there are a lot of ways to find answers online. 

So what kind of digital content should you focus on creating? 

A study by YPulse found that Gen Z is just as likely to turn to YouTube as they are to Google when they want to learn something new!

That means that these generations look to video in almost every situation. Whether that situation is learning how to change a tire or learning about a new company.  

But let’s say they decide not to use Google or YouTube. 

The next places they’ll turn to learn about your brand are your website and your social media pages. Why not meet them where they are with the content they actually want to consume. If you have videos, you make your content much more digestible for these key audiences. 

So you know you need video, but you also know how hard it can be to create video and how quickly video can become outdated. 

Let’s go through some of the options when it comes to video creation. 

Video creation is similar to homeownership— a LOT can go wrong – which is why many recruiters  don’t create video. 

With homes, roofs cave in, pipes burst and your electricity can fail. When these things happen you’re faced with a choice. You can either hire an expert, where you’ll lose control, face unknown timelines and have high price tags. OR you can try to do it yourself, which can feel amazing if you get it right but can turn disastrous if anything unexpected or unplanned pops up. Surely there should be something in the middle- something that lets you have the control you desire but also backs you up with expertise and support should anything go awry. 

We’re not here to talk about home repair— but these same points apply to creating compelling recruiting content. You could hire a team of professionals, but expect to pay a lot and wait a while for content that you need now. You might be able to get your marketing team to help out, but what comes back may not reflect the story you want to tell, and you may have to wait weeks or even longer to get what you need. When the need for content is as strong and consistent as it is now, that’s time you don’t have to spare. 

But what about the do-it-yourself option? Sure, it seems good in theory but what if something comes up that you didn’t plan for? Thinking up creative responses is a never-ending challenge, and learning new tools can take a while - and mastering those tools even longer. You could end up spending your valuable time on a project that will be useless if it doesn’t serve its purpose because the quality is not quite up to snuff. 

So what are you to do?


Video is the ideal medium to communicate with passive job seekers. With new technology, it is no longer the challenge that it once was. Recruiting teams can now easily and independently make video content for recruiting on social media channels. Stay tuned for how, next week! 

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