Sourcing Candidates

Smart sourcing and attraction strategies are crucial when it comes to hiring the best talent – you may already have a great recruitment process in place, but this means nothing if you have no quality candidates to put through it.  So how can you improve your chances of sourcing better candidates?

Being proactive in your approach for sourcing candidates can make all the difference – passive attraction and sourcing strategies can limit your hiring decisions to only the best of the candidates who happened to see your advert or vacancy posting.


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Does your attraction and sourcing strategy need an overhaul?

  • Is your sourcing and attraction strategy limited to posting adverts on job boards or LinkedIn?
  • Does the word Boolean mean anything to you?
  • Is your Twitter stream overloaded with links directing people to your vacancies?
  • Do you find yourself doing the same thing, over and over again, and hoping it leads to better results?

If the answer is yes to most of these questions, then your candidate sourcing and attraction strategy could do with a remodel. Luckily, we’ve got 5 smart ways to help you achieve better results.

Sourcing Tip 1: Know where your audience is

With so many attraction channels to choose from, it’s tempting to throw them all into the mix.  But this approach is likely to lead a whole heap of work, with little return.  Identify what communication stream is best suited to your target candidates – do they use more traditional channels like job boards or the job centre, or are they active on online platforms such as LinkedIn and Twitter?

In fact, Penguin Random House have been targeting their ideal candidates using Tumblr, a social media platform, and promoting the opportunity using the hashtag #thescheme on Twitter. Simple but effective -Penguin Random House found this beneficial in recruiting creative individuals – perfect for their company. What communication streams are you using

candidate sourcing

Sourcing tip 2: “Sourcing AND effectively AND recruiting”

There are a growing number of tools where you can source candidates directly.  However recruiting managers and HR teams often fall into the habit of using generic search methods and terms to source talent. Sometimes a general search term such as “care worker” or “graduate” could help you find a pool of potential candidates.

More often than not however it’s likely you’re after someone who meets specific criteria. And where this is the case, Boolean searching is key to efficiently pinpointing the right kind of candidates. You’ll see an immediate change in the type of candidates you source – quality is more important than quantity.

candidate sourcing

Sourcing tip 3: Candidates are looking for a reason to join your company

Deciding to join a new organisation, whether the candidate is actively searching for a new role or not, is a huge decision. Whilst the promise of playing an important role in your business plays a part, the most significant factor considered when an applicant is sourced is whether they see themselves working in your business.

Most adverts focus heavily on promoting the job and not the organisation – but those applying will not remain in that role forever, so really the focus should be the challenge and outcomes. Job descriptions covering all the responsibilities of the role or vacancy are lame, so really push the boat out on WHY candidates should apply to join your organisation and what challenges lie ahead.

Job adverts should be written to inspire candidates to make a difference by joining your organisation – it should also emphasize how they can achieve this. Applicants will be motivated when they have an outline of the key skills required and their importance for the role they’re applying for, so creating a an advert full of passion is key!

candidate sourcing

Sourcing tip 4: Top talent know other top talent

Existing employees are brand advocates for your business – and often one of the most under-used sources of attracting talent.  Referrals should be encouraged and the top recruiters never stop asking for them.

Don’t be put of thinking this needs to be a big formal referral scheme – it could be as simple as asking teams or recent hires if they know anyone currently searching for a new role.  The key thing to remember – top talent know other top talent, so it’s likely that your highest performing employees will know someone suitable for the role you’re hiring for.  And the best time to ask them for a referral is right after they join your organisation.

Sourcing tip 5: Block out some time to source candidates

Outline the key personnel who will be involved with sourcing candidates – how many people will you need to actively source for vacancies and how often? But most importantly, make sure you allocate time to source effectively?

Reviewing your sourcing strategy will highlight strengths and weaknesses in your current processes. Unless the shortcomings are addressed, sourcing could do more harm than good for your recruitment processes – effective sourcing really can make all the difference between hiring okay talent vs. hiring great talent.

Direct sourcing is often seen as a last resort for filling vacancies due to a lack of suitable applications but this doesn’t have to be the case. Implementing direct sourcing as an active part of a recruitment process will improve the quality of candidates assessed at each stage and could very well bring you the results you expect.

Are you planning on running a recruitment campaign and need to source some great candidates? Click here to find out what Cohesion can do for you.