Published on January 5th, 2023
Simply put, Talent sourcing is the process of finding suitable candidates for a job role and people who specialize in sourcing are called ‘sourcers’.
Ultimately, the aim of sourcing candidates is to create a talent pipeline that can be used at the time of recruiting. However, when sourcing passive candidates (candidates who are not actively looking for jobs), it turns into passive candidate sourcing.
Overall, candidate sourcing involves identifying candidates for organizational roles, and assessing and engaging them to turn them into potential applicants.
Sourcing always happens early in the recruitment process. A sourcer’s job is to convince the candidate to apply for a position. When sourcers lock down candidates, they hand the candidates off to the recruiter who continues the process of recruiting.
In a nutshell, sourcing is the subset of recruiting.
Recruiting involves attracting potential applicants, screening, interviewing, and assisting them through the entire hiring process.
It starts where sourcing ends, with recruiters receiving the talent pipeline after the talent sourcers have engaged potential candidates.
A recruiter takes part in candidate onboarding, and offer negotiation, and becomes the point of contact for the candidate from then. They also serve as the intermediary between the candidates and the clients or organizations looking to fill a position.
Administrative responsibilities like advertising job vacancies on job sites, assessing and screening applications, scheduling interviews, coordinating with candidates, and attending to any other client organization requirements are also carried out by recruiters.
Talent sourcing and recruitment are similar, but not the same. Sourcing feeds into recruitment, to create a consistent flow of highly-skilled and qualified applicants for roles.
Sourcing is the precursor to recruitment. It is the starting point of a recruitment process, searching for and identifying talent, then nurturing them and turning them into leads for the hiring team.
Recruitment teams then take those sourced candidates, alongside ones who have applied directly through a job board or have been put forward by a recruitment agency, and funnel them into the application process.
Recruiters oversee each stage of the process, from initial screening through assessment, interview, and finally onboarding and employment.
When comparing recruiting and sourcing, there may still be a sizable degree of overlap, depending on the organization you're looking at. Both for instance involve gathering relevant information and identifying and screening applicants based on their qualifications and expertise.
Since the capacity to attract, hire and retain top talent may decide a company's success or failure in both the short and long terms, both roles are essential components of any hiring strategy.
Where the lines often blur has a lot to do with who is performing these jobs. A single recruiter can have both sourcing and recruiting duties in one company, while in another the work is divided up among specialists or external sourcers and recruiters who work in tandem to achieve their respective goals. So which is the better approach?
It all depends on the size of your business, your recruitment budget, and your hiring objectives.
If your company is small and your hiring requirements are not urgent, you might decide to assign the entire recruitment process to one individual or an internal team. Just watch out when trying to play a joint sourcing and recruitment function that they won't become overburdened by the number of responsibilities they'll be taking on.
While initially paying fewer employees to complete the task might be less expensive, what you save in salary costs may be lost in subsequent hidden costs. A less effective and overworked staff will take longer to find and employ quality candidates, which will increase the cost of each hire and maybe use up more of your budget for hiring than you had planned.
That's why you may choose to separate your sourcing and recruiting functions either within or outside your company.
Here are a few benefits of keeping sourcing and recruiting apart;
The aim of any recruiter is to decrease the time and expense involved in filling a post. However, if they are also acting as a sourcer, it will inevitably lower the hiring standard.
Both recruiters and sourcers have unique skill sets, therefore appointing one individual to perform the duties of both can result in subpar execution.
On the other side, separating the resources will guarantee that your recruiters have a backup source for prospective candidates at all times.
Sourcers and recruiters can evaluate applicants more thoroughly and swiftly when they aren't concerned about each other's jobs.
Since the recruiters won't be overworked and can recuperate after making successful hires, it results in higher team productivity overall. Sourcers can restock the talent pipeline at the same time.
Due to a lack of bandwidth, it may be difficult to maintain business operations if you need to make an urgent hire.
You will be losing each working day with an open position by the time you gather the prospects, assess them, and evaluate them. Consider the amount of work and revenue you'll miss as a result of workforce limitations, especially in a competitive world like the one we live in today where every hour counts for business growth.
You can count on teams to deliver greater outcomes while avoiding burnout when they are given clear roles and aren't always catching up with the workload.
Additionally, it lessens the possibility of mistakes and delays, improving the candidate experience.
While some companies are focusing on sourcing, some are merging both roles and hiring the best candidates.
It all comes down to organizational needs. Having a separate sourcing component in the recruiting process may decrease the time to hire because there’s a more robust pipeline of talent from the sourcing side. When the pipeline is already filled with screened candidates, the applicants tend to be of higher quality and a better fit for a given role.
Does your organization employ people who specialize in the sourcing components of the recruiting process? If not, is it something you’re considering for the future?
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