Published: Aug 26, 2020Time to read: 5mins Category: Recruitment
5 Candidate Sourcing Strategies to Build Your Talent Pipeline
One of the main challenges of outbound candidate sourcing is that it requires a hefty amount of administrative work from recruiters, including cold calls and endless sifting through resumes. However, outbound sourcing is critical for finding passive candidates. These individuals will often be another organization’s highest performers—and the hardest ones for recruiters to attract. To help solve this challenge, consider these creative candidate sourcing strategies to build your talent pipeline within your applicant tracking system (ATS).
Developing a long-term strategy for sourcing top talent is essential to the future of any company. The ability to attract and secure an industry’s highest performers will give companies an edge over competitors. But, identifying where your best candidates are can often be a challenge, even for experienced recruiters and hiring managers.
Here are five candidate sourcing strategies to build your talent pipeline:
1. Build Your Employer Brand
Even the most persuasive recruiters will find it challenging to source candidates if their organization has a non-existent or negative employer brand. Based on insights from Glassdoor, 35% of job seekers will abandon the recruitment process after reading negative reviews from past or current employees.That’s why it’s incredibly important for companies to respond to every review on external career sites—especially the negative ones. This gives employers a chance to tell their side of the story, which shows that the company is willing to admit to shortcomings or mistakes.
Your employer brand should be reviewed and tailored to fit the type of candidates you want to attract. This means engaging with current employees who can help tell your story. Allowing them to share their experiences about your company will provide candidates with the social proof needed to increase trust and confidence in your brand.
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2. Encourage Collaboration
Collaboration between recruiters and hiring managers should begin as early and often as possible. This will ensure that they’re on the same page when it comes to identifying the ideal candidate. Instead of spending countless hours searching for the “perfect candidate”, recruiters and hiring managers should focus on providing a great candidate experience.
Perhaps a recruiter finds a candidate they feel could work well with existing team members, and has the necessary skills to fill the role, but they don’t have the experience level preferred by a hiring manager. In cases like this, hiring managers and recruiters should collaborate with one another to review and revise the job criteria, providing recruiters with a wider talent pool.
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3. Engage Passive Candidates
Most of us would rather purchase a product from a company we already know and trust instead of a random organization we’ve never heard of. The same can be said about passive candidates who aren’t keen on leaving a company they respect for one they’re unfamiliar with. Although having an established, trustworthy employer brand helps, it’s not the only avenue for engaging passive candidates.
Recruiters and hiring managers should have a strong understanding of your company’s culture, and how to best present it to external talent. Provide talent acquisition professionals with the resources necessary to deploy an exceptional application and interview process, like mobile-friendly career sites. Don’t be afraid to go into detail about a specific department’s subculture so candidates have a transparent knowledge of what it's like to work at your company.
Keep reading: ‘4 Practical Ways to Recruit Diverse Talent’
4. Expand the Sourcing Channels
Recruiters will likely have their preferred channels for sourcing candidates, but they may not have the wide net that’s needed to secure more elusive candidates. For instance, a Generation X candidate probably won’t be surfing the same channels as a Generation Z candidate. Meeting candidates where they’re most comfortable increases a recruiter’s chances of having a meaningful interaction that could turn a candidate into a new hire.
Along with leveraging popular job boards and their own professional networks, like LinkedIn, recruiters should also try reaching candidates on less conventional sourcing sites. Especially sites that are geared toward the specific skills of a role they’re trying to fill. For example, if a recruiter is looking to fill a more technical role, think software developer, they should consider sourcing from sites like GitHub, that cater to developers.
Taking an offline approach is another way for recruiters to build their talent pipeline. Whether it’s a self-hosted networking meetup or an industry-specific conference/event, this gives recruiters a chance to brush elbows with local talent. Plus, it creates brand awareness for passive candidates. If meeting in person isn’t an option, virtual hiring events can be a valuable tool to ensure recruiters and hiring managers have another platform to engage candidates.
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5. Evaluate Sourcing Channel Effectiveness
Regardless of which channels your recruiters and hiring managers use, it’s critical that they focus on the most effective ones. That’s why it’s necessary to evaluate the effectiveness of your sourcing channels, from both a quantitative and qualitative perspective. This ensures your talent acquisition team understands which channels are contributing to your candidate pool.
Here’s how you can calculate it:
For quantity: Compare the number of candidates generated via a sourcing channel (during a specified timeframe) with the channel that’s producing the most results.
For quality: Use the same approach above but focus on the number of quality candidates (often defined by their length with the company and productivity levels) that were sourced from the channel within a specified timeframe.
Related resource: ‘5 Recruiting Metrics that Drive Business Value'