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How to Engage Candidates with Cold Calling in Recruitment

Cold calling in recruitment is an excellent tactic, regardless of whether your goal is to find a candidate or convert prospects into customers. So what is cold calling in recruitment and how to start cold-calling candidates? Let’s find the best practices and techniques for successful cold calling!

What is Cold Calling in Recruitment?

What is Cold Calling in Recruitment?
Source: Skillroads

Cold calling in recruitment is where recruiters proactively make phone calls to reach out to potential candidates

Usually, recruiters contact prospective employees through cold calling to discuss job opportunities and explore the possibility of a candidate’s interest and suitability for a particular role.

Using a proactive strategy like cold calling, recruiters may reach out to a larger talent pool than just individuals who have applied or replied to job advertisements. The cold calling technique is also crucial for new recruiters who begin with a small network.

Why Does Cold Calling Work in Recruitment?

Cold calling works in recruitment for several reasons:

Why Does Cold Calling Work in Recruitment?
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Access to Passive Candidates

Using cold calling, recruiters may connect with passive candidates who may not actively look for jobs. By initiating a conversation through a cold call, recruiters can showcase their employer brand, growth opportunity of the role and convince passive candidates to consider a career change.

Personalized Approach

Recruiters can directly connect with candidates, engage in one-on-one conversations, and address their career aspirations and goals. This personal touch builds trust and improves connections, increasing candidates’ potential to look into the opportunity.

Immediate Response

Emailing is a great way to contact passive candidates, but it can also be slow. Email responses often take 24 hours, but a prospect’s response to a cold call might happen instantly. A phone call might be the quickest method to determine if a prospect is interested in an offer since it initiates a live conversation.

Building Relationships

Even if a candidate is not immediately interested in the current job opportunity, maintaining a positive interaction can lead to future possibilities. Recruiters might save the candidate’s contact information for future use and contact them again when a suitable job becomes available. Candidates may also save your contact information and reach out when they are ready for a job change. Both of these create a long-term talent pipeline for the organization

Ability to dive into the details

In contrast to other passive outreach strategies, getting a prospect live on a cold call phone line makes it easier for candidates to understand the role, experience criteria, and corporate culture via an open flow of information. Additionally, it enables candidates to raise questions and get answers, facilitating more informed decision-making.

Best Practices and Techniques For Cold Calling in Recruitment

Best Practices and Techniques For Cold Calling in Recruitment
Source: The Brooks Group

Cold calling is an effective recruiting tool with the right amount of preparation beforehand. Without careful preparation, your cold calling will not differ from spam calls. Careful preparation is what differentiates a compelling cold call that adds value to the candidates from a spam call that wastes their time.

Step 1: Preparing for Cold Calls

Before you start, deeply understand why you are cold calling and what you want to achieve. A typical cold call usually takes 5 to 10 minutes. So it’s essential to impress and engage your candidate in that short time.

As a good recruiter, when you try to convince cold calling candidates in recruitment to take the job, you must well understand the unique qualities of the position. To make your cold calls more effective, it’s beneficial to research the candidate’s profile and interests.

Building personalized recruiting scripts for cold-calling candidates is also a vital component. Although having a plan in place is essential, try to avoid seeming scripted or robotic. When you imagine how the conversation will go and get ready to ask and answer questions with confidence., you’ll exude a compelling confidence that truly captivates candidates.

Step 2: Build Rapport

Building rapport is crucial since it will determine how the conversation will go for the remainder of the call. Remember that it typically takes 60 seconds to captivate and convert a prospect.

Introduce yourself properly and state the reason for your call right away. Show a sincere interest in the candidate’s past and professional goals. To establish a feeling of familiarity, look for common ground, such as related professional interests or experiences.

Step 3: Communicate Clearly

The foremost goal of cold calling is to draw prospects to your hiring company or the job you’re attempting to fill. So, never undervalue how important it is to highlight the benefits that your company would give them. Also, remember to highlight the organization’s culture, values, and mission to help the candidate envision themselves as part of the team.

However, you should avoid going overboard or exaggerating your successes. It should be straightforward and not seem forced while allowing the dialogue to flow naturally.

Step 4: Listen Actively

Active listening is a crucial skill when conducting cold calls. Pay close attention to the candidate’s responses and avoid interrupting them. You might nudge people into sharing their ideas and experiences by offering open-ended inquiries. This can show your real interest in candidates while delivering respect from the company side.

Remember that listening to the applicant not only helps you get insights – it also creates a good impression.

Step 5: Follow-up and Relationship Building

Follow-up and Relationship Building
Source: BrandBlast

After each cold call, jot down the main points covered and any necessary next steps. These notes will be beneficial in subsequent discussions and will act as a reminder of the candidate’s particular requirements and interests.

Personalize your follow-up emails or texts to thank them for their time and consideration. Use the chance to reiterate essential points made on the call and provide further details or resources. Building trust and maintaining candidate engagement need regular, considerate follow-ups in interactions.

Step 6: Continuous Improvement

There is never a perfect scenario for all calls. We need to learn from mistakes or awkward moments and improve them over time. As a good recruiter, let’s continuously seek candidate feedback and analyze outcomes to optimize your cold-calling efforts.

Always stay updated on industry trends and best practices to deploy the most effective practices and techniques for cold calling in recruitment.

Measuring and Evaluating Cold Calling Effectiveness

Measuring and Evaluating Cold Calling Effectiveness

Here are some key metrics to track the effectiveness of your cold calling effort:

  • Call Conversion Rates: Measure the proportion of cold calls leading to desired results, such as setting up interviews or advancing candidates to the next level of the hiring process.
  • Candidate Engagement: Consider how interested and involved applicants were during cold calls by analyzing the conversation length or the depth of their responses.
  • Quality of Hires: To ascertain the effect of cold calling on recruiting results, contrast their success and retention rates with candidates from other sourcing channels.

Using data and analytics, you can effectively identify trends and patterns in your cold-calling efforts. Analyze the data to refine your approach, such as adjusting your script, targeting specific candidate segments, or focusing on industries or roles with higher conversion rates.


Cold calling in recruitment can be highly effective if you carefully prepare by doing research and establishing a goal for the call.

To further optimize your recruitment process and connect with a broader pool of qualified candidates, consider utilizing additional strategies such as posting job openings on job boards that help you showcase your brand. Boulo Solutions can help you find and hire individuals that suit your requirements and culture.

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