The History of Candidate Research and Sourcing Tactics

The History of Candidate Research and Sourcing Tactics

Over the years, recruiting and sourcing tactics have changed. We’ve transitioned from the old-school “brute force” methods of manually identifying potential candidates in phone books and directories to the online resources that cultivate prospective candidate information using AI. This shift to boolean search strings, web browsers and AI may speed up simple automation tasks, but recruiting and sourcing are still just as tasking as ever. This is partially because digital recruiting and sourcing methods have placed a false sense of qualification on what candidates do or don’t put on their public profiles. In other words, talent pools feel smaller and tighter only because recruiters and sourcers aren’t focusing on the bigger picture: engaging candidates.

The use of new technology is great, however, hiring managers can’t assume everyone is on platforms such as LinkedIn. Expecting every profile to list every qualification they’re looking for is causing a lot of over-indexing in the recruiting industry. The premise of engaging candidates means creating conversations with them to get to know the person behind the LinkedIn profile or resume. It’s about knowing what candidates have in relation to the skills/requirements and then screening them in or out based on whether they have the other skills your client needs. You can’t take their resume or profile to be 100% because people may or may not give you all of the info.

How did companies use to get resumes and job seekers? With Rolodexes and job postings in the newspaper. Learn more from @IQTalent about the transformation from traditional to modern #sourcing trends: Click To Tweet

Recruiting Tech with a Human Touch

With Diamond Recruiting, you can start narrowly focused, but you have to reduce the keywords in the searches and fill in the blanks via, dare I say it, an actual conversation. This way, we focus on candidates that have shared the most information and then expand our search to include candidates with less information where we need to have conversations to fill in the blanks.

With the emphasis on getting to know candidates, it’s important to focus recruiting and sourcing efforts on uncovering what isn’t on the candidate’s profile – i.e. their soft skills. Simply look candidates up on social media and disqualify them based on the information you find, or lack thereof is shorting your talent pools of some potential great employees. Recruiters and sourcers need to maximize their tools, both digital and engagement-based, to make sure they’re not assuming candidate skills and experiences.

History of Candidate Research and Sourcing

Some of you might remember when you had to physically mail-in your resumes and cover letters with Rolodexes and job postings in the newspaper. What about faxing them in? Traditional methods such as these were focused around human connections and the fact people typically stuck with a company for long periods, if not their whole career. Putting job listings in newspapers was a surefire way to get flooded with resumes. Local employment office postings, temp agencies and internal hiring were other ways companies researched and sourced candidates.

Local employment office postings were put where people were likely to be looking for a job. Temp agencies made it easy for recruiters to find people in specific fields. Internal hiring, which is still used today, promotes employees and is a simple and effective way to fill the position. Old sourcing and recruiting tactics solely revolved around the people-based industry and making connections. Once the connection was made, recruiters would get the job candidate approved by the hiring manager and their job would be done. Sourcers and Researchers often didn’t have any visibility into the candidate experience once they were identified and/or contacted. Now, because of new software and more transparent processes, we get to see how the candidates progress through the process.

The market is more candidate driven than ever before; it used to be recruiters searching for talent day after day, but now the talent is actively picking the business they want to work for.

New Ways to Source

Modern methods revolve around social/professional media, which allows for a vast talent pool. Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) and Candidate Relationship Management software are the new Rolodex. With all the new technology, it is important to have a good balance between human interaction and technology. Today, technology is a huge part of research, sourcing, and recruiting as a whole. Recruiters have to integrate technology to be efficient nowadays, but there is still the need for a human connection. Recruiters also have to be accessible and have the ability to reach out to candidates in ways that are relevant and engaging.

With the global market, the use of social media and other analytic tools, recruiters have to have a presence everywhere job seekers are located; it is important to reach job candidates where they are. With all the competition and the fact top talent can be pursued by many recruiters at once, it can be harder to get a response, let alone a “yes” to the job offer. Because of this, it is necessary for recruiters to put their focus on selling the job, getting the attention of the candidate and keeping them engaged throughout the process.

It is necessary for #recruiters to put their focus on selling the job, getting the attention of the candidate and keeping them engaged throughout the process. Check out this article from @IQTalent and get tips on how to better your #sourcing process: Click To Tweet

Candidate Sourcing Trends to Implement

With all of the changes, it is essential for companies to implement new social recruiting and sourcing strategies into their process. Social media, the use of mobile phones to source talent, AI and virtual reality are just a few of these new tactics. Recruitment automation tools automate the simple and tedious parts of the process, allowing recruiters to focus on bigger, more important parts. Using social media channels to recruit is always a great tactic because that’s where top talent is located.

It’s beneficial to utilize strategic alignment, which is identifying the company’s future needs and goals. Recruitment marketing and inbound recruiting are all about using marketing techniques to attract talent to your organization and then engaging them. Employer branding is important to take into account because when a company has a good reputation, good candidates are likely to have an interest in the company. A good candidate experience has gone to show positive experiences make it more likely a candidate will accept the job offer, and candidate relationship management goes hand in hand with that because building a good relationship with current and potential future job candidates only leads to a positive hire.

Research and sourcing have come a long way since the advent of boolean search strings and web browsers like Google and Bing. Traditional methods can still be used today, but it’s necessary to include modern trends in your sourcing strategy. In order to successfully recruit top talent and hire the job candidate your company is searching for, IQTalent Partners uses the most up-to-date processes including AI matching and other useful tactics. Get started with IQTalent today!

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