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9 Ways to build a killer candidate sourcing strategy

9 Ways to build a killer candidate sourcing strategy

Creating an effective candidate sourcing strategy helps means finding the most qualified people to fill your open job positions. This method should include the use of different platforms, like job boards and social media, to attract both active and passive job seekers. In this blog post, we’ll take a deep dive into candidate sourcing and teach you how to build a talent sourcing strategy to get your best hires in the door. 

What is candidate sourcing?

Candidate sourcing used to mean posting job openings in various places and seeing who responded, but with this strategy, only candidates who were actively looking for work were targeted. To reach applicants who may not be in the market for a new job—also known as “passive” job seekers—companies had to be proactive in their sourcing efforts.

In the digital age, when social media has become a pillar of daily life, candidate sourcing techniques have adapted with the times. Today, talent sourcing is not only limited to those who are actively seeking work—the right candidate sourcing techniques should reach people who want to find work immediately as well as those who are content in their current job but are also willing to explore what else is out there.

Advances in talent sourcing solutions have also leveled the playing field and enabled smaller companies to compete with larger, resource-enabled, and possibly more knowledgeable companies to attract the best candidates.

Whether you manage a franchise or run a large or small business, use the following candidate sourcing techniques to improve your chances of securing the best candidates for your job openings.

How can I build a talent sourcing strategy?

What’s one of the most important parts of your business? It’s not revenue, ratings, or customer count. It’s talent sourcing! 

When you hire the right people, you’ll notice your company’s productivity pick up, which can boost your bottom line. You also might notice a more positive work culture, which can affect morale and keep workers around longer. 

On the other hand, if your sourcing efforts bring in the wrong candidates, you may end up wasting time and even losing out on business opportunities. To make sure you’re on the right side of your sourcing strategy, you need to build the right program that revolves around the ideal candidate you want to hire. Here are nine tips to help you get started.

1. Clearly define the role 

Start by creating a detailed description of the role, including all the tasks required to do the job. List qualifications that are non-negotiable, followed by those that are “nice-to-haves.” Ranking them in order of importance will help you make quick decisions and weed out candidates who aren’t qualified. 

You also need to think about how you want to title your open positions. Keep in mind that different companies might refer to the same job using different titles. Review all possible job titles and choose the one you feel best matches the duties and qualifications you outlined in the previous step to ensure that you find the widest pool of candidates.

2. Identify the number of vacancies 

The number of vacancies you have for a role will impact your talent sourcing strategy. If you’re a high-turnover business, you may need to source a large number of candidates at one time. 

Typically, a smaller recruiter-to-candidate ratio provides better results. However, with the right talent sourcing solution, one recruiter can manage nearly 2,000 candidates without compromising quality.

3. Allow enough time to search for the right candidate

Although time-to-hire is an important metric to fill roles fast, it’s important to allocate enough time to carefully examine candidates. The first batch of candidates may be suitable for the role, but applicants who apply later may be an even better fit. 

Don’t be afraid to take your time to find the most appropriate candidates, which may end up saving you time in the long run. 

4. Use your ATS to source candidates who previously applied

If you use an applicant tracking system (ATS) or other type of talent sourcing solution that keeps a record of all the people who have applied for your open positions, you also can use this platform to source candidates for future openings. 

Some candidates may have been rejected previously because there were other applicants who were more qualified. Ideally, your ATS will have a powerful search function that can serve as a candidate sourcing aide. The benefits of searching your ATS for candidates who have already applied is that you know they are interested in your company. Additionally, you can save time and costs related to advertising externally.

5. Develop a pipeline for talent pool sourcing

With your ATS at the ready, you can build a pipeline of talented and qualified individuals who are ready to work. This also means you can reduce the likelihood of facing a staff shortage since you’ll have a pool to pull from. 

Although you may not have any current vacancies, having a full pipeline will ensure that you are ready to source and recruit as the need arises.

Candidates can be added to your pipeline even if they’re currently employed but aren’t quite ready to move on to a new opportunity. You can use message automation to nurture the relationship with candidates in your pipeline so that when they are ready to move on, your company will be at the top of their mind.

6. Track and analyze your talent sourcing metrics

To optimize your sourcing efforts, use your ATS to identify which metrics are most important for you to meet. These might be based on past experiences or knowledge of your industry’s performance standards. 

One of the most important metrics hinges on how your candidates learned about your position. Time-to-hire is another crucial metric to track so you know how long it takes (on average) to hire a single candidate. 

There are a number of other talent sourcing metrics that can be tracked in order to improve your sourcing and recruitment processes, including (but not limited to):

  • Stage metrics—A visual representation of the delays that cause bottlenecks in different stages of the sourcing and recruitment process
  • Applicant conversion—Optimize your funnel in order to improve the conversion rate at different stages
  • Interview attendance—Find out the best days and times for interview attendance
  • Hire rates—Get an understanding of how many people need to apply to meet your hiring objectives
  • Drop-off insights—Discover the reasons applicants voluntarily leave or are kicked out of the hiring process

7. Follow ATS best practices

Implementing talent sourcing best practices will give you limited results if you don’t make use of the right technology. Your ATS and talent sourcing solutions should use automation to help you to improve the most important sourcing and hiring metrics. Automation helps you provide a personal experience to qualified candidates without neglecting applicants who are not a correct fit for the job.

Your ATS or talent sourcing solutions should remove the need for using manual processes, like spreadsheets. Managing your recruitment process manually involves storing different information in different systems. This approach will cause frustration and confusion, which may become apparent to the candidate.

8. Provide a superior candidate experience

Now that you know your ATS can provide an easy, efficient, and cost-effective way to find the best candidates, the rest of the recruitment process should be equally as seamless for both you and the candidate. 

As a Labor ATS, Fountain can manage the full sourcing and recruitment process using the features and functions below, making it a breeze for applicants to become candidates, and eventually get hired.

  • Workflows and stages—Allocate different workflows for every job you post
  • Screening—Conduct background checks and other pre-employment screening requirements
  • Team management—Control access and permission for different team members 
  • Integrations—Integrate seamlessly with other sourcing and recruitment tools, like electronic signature software and pre-employment screening services to provide an end-to-end recruitment solution

9. Keep communication channels open 

The timeliness and the way you communicate with candidates will have an impact on how your company is perceived. Every candidate should receive an acknowledgement after they have submitted an application to your company. This should be the case even if you are hiring thousands of candidates at one time. 

Delays in contacting candidates or substandard communication can be reported on company review sites like Glassdoor. Job seekers who read these reviews may be reluctant to apply for jobs for fear of a sluggish or nonresponsive application process. In fact, 80% of job applicants list lack of communication or slow communication as a reason for rescinding their candidacy.

How Fountain can help 

When it comes to sourcing, Fountain uses automation to help you to effectively attract the right candidates, keep communication simple and open, and customized to cater to applicants across the hiring pipeline.

But regardless of how many roles you need to fill and in what time period, an optimized ATS is your best friend in the sourcing game.