Kick Off Your Sourcing Efforts With These Four Steps

June 3, 2014

Every Talent Acquisition organisation is interested in reducing costs or time to hire and is keen to learn how to achieve that. Unfortunately the traditional reactive sourcing model falls short when it comes to these goals and in order to succeed you need to start building a proactive sourcing strategy.

The first big challenge in your way? Changing your team’s way of work and helping them succeed by delivering the right strategy and tools.

This is a typical conversation I have with my corporate customers at LinkedIn and I thought I would share with you what I advise them. From my experience, there are four basic steps that will ensure you have a successful proactive sourcing model and they are detailed below:

1. Define what positions you need to hire for and build a demand plan

How many hires do you need to make this year? In what functions and locations? Typically, how hard are these roles to fill? Where do you predict your team will encounter challenges in sourcing talent?

Once you understand what it is that you need, you can define the strategy for sourcing. In some cases you won’t choose a proactive strategy, for example for roles that you are able to fill easily from posting job advertisements. However, a proactive sourcing strategy will help you fill roles that you often struggle to source talent for or if you need to improve the quality of your hires.

2. Create a targeted strategy to help recruiters build their searches and pipelines

Choose roles you know will be difficult to fill or where quality is a focus, and task your resourcing team with proactively searching for these candidates and saving them into their pipeline for the future.

If you try to tackle too many things at once, the recruiters will not be able to focus on delivering talent where you need them most, and the overall impact of the direct sourcing strategy will be diluted. Give the team some clear and specific talent vertical to target in order to drive the greatest business impact. Then, have your team start pipelining, and track and nurture the leads they find in LinkedIn Recruiter. Once you have an actual job opening, you can easily engage with the prospects in the pipeline and present qualified candidates to the hiring manager.

3. Set benchmarks for the team and monitor their activity weekly

How many hires do you need to make? How many people will you need to find to be able to fill the open roles? Are the recruiters finding and reaching out to enough potential candidates to meet this need?

Setting measurable goals and objectives with your team will ensure a good foundation for your proactive sourcing strategy. Once you have set those goals, make sure your team tracks the metrics and frequently reports on them – this way you can continue to refine your sourcing strategy.

4. Track the source of applications in your ATS

Have you set up source tracking in the ATS to automatically capture job application source or do the recruiters manually enter candidates into the ATS and choose a relevant source to track?

The system of record for recruitment is your ATS and if you don't track the source of your hires there all your hard work proactively sourcing will amount to nothing. Consider tracking the applications that have been received, shortlisted, interviewed, offered and hired by the source of origin. This will help you show the value of the talent you have proactively sourced and allow you to map your success every step of the way.

If you are just starting to implement a direct sourcing model and don’t know where to start, these four steps should give you some direction. Make sure you have engaged your recruiters and explained why you are implementing a proactive sourcing strategy; provide them with clear goals and metrics to measure their success. But most of all, ensure they can leverage the right tools to be successful.

Tip for Talent Pipeline