Strategic Talent Sourcing

Strategic Talent Sourcing: What is it and Why does it Matter?

Published on January 9th, 2023


It is a living nightmare for recruiters to maintain a talent pipeline that you can peep into when a vacancy arises at your company. 

It can be a real rollercoaster of a ride to quickly hire someone to keep your time to hire low and quality of hire high. 

How many times have you asked the hiring manager “when do you need the employee to join” and their answer is “yesterday”?

We are sure that whenever a vacancy opens up, the hiring managers will want a new employee in the blink of an eye.

We wish we could help you score the best employees for your company. But alas not!

Let us point you to the next best thing to solve all your troubles.

“Strategic Talent Sourcing”

Did you know according to Lever, sourced candidates are approximately twice as efficient and effective as candidates that apply without talent-sourcing strategies?

But first….

What is Talent Sourcing?

Talent sourcing, also commonly known as candidate sourcing, is a talent acquisition strategy that focuses on generating a constant influx of potential candidates to fill a vacant job role in their organization as soon as possible.

It is a wholesome approach that includes proper research to identify culturally fit and highly skilled candidates who can fulfill a given job role. 

This brings us to the question of the hour… why strategic talent sourcing? How is it any different from recruitment?

Why Should You Develop Strategic Talent Sourcing?

Today in this cut-throat recruitment market, a strategic talent sourcing approach is important for

  • finding the ideal candidates who will fit the organization's culture well;
  • creating or finding new roles if the aspiring candidate is available in the industry or market
  • evaluating passive applicants for open positions within the company
  • referring your company as the ‘preferred employer’ to young, talented professionals for developing an uninterrupted talent pipeline

What Does Strategic Talent Sourcing Entail?

Talent sourcing is just the beginning of talent acquisition or recruitment. The entire process has to be intricately executed and kept business-focused to obtain the best talent pipeline. 

Strategic talent sourcing can be carried out in seven steps.

1. Know your Company

It is crucial to understand the hiring manager for whom you are recruiting before beginning any talent-sourcing strategy. While looking for possible employees, it's important to take into account factors like the salary range for different professional levels, the team culture, and the demands for critical skills.

2. Construct a Candidate Persona

The process of developing a candidate persona for sourcing and hiring is comparable to identifying the target market for advertising and marketing initiatives. To put it another way, you must be completely clear about whom to approach, who to look for, and where to look.

Some tips to create a candidate persona

  • Obtain information on the desired education, experience, and personality traits.
  • Ask yourself questions like: Where do candidates look for a job? What are the skill requirements for a particular job role? What motivates a certain candidate?
  • Find real-world examples of your ideal candidates and use them as references.

 3. Engage with the Candidates

Understanding that the individualization-driven talent landscape requires you to communicate with candidates on their chosen platforms is crucial. The objective is to start and maintain interesting conversations that increase awareness of your employer brand. As a result, as the third step in your talent acquisition strategy, you should concentrate on enhancing your visibility across the most widely used channels.

4. Candidate Outreach

You should already have a pool of candidates on hand who are interested in working for your company. On the one hand, you can figure out which of these applicants will fit in best. However, by utilizing the information from your candidate outreach channels, you may actively search for suitable candidates. It is a good idea to start reaching out to the people you have determined are the best candidates for your talent needs at this point.

5. Get to know your Applicants

At this point, the process of talent acquisition gradually enters the second phase after sourcing, Managers and other team members often step in at this stage to vet the candidate against all the roles and responsibilities. This stage ultimately is the finale after which offers are rolled out.

6. Onboarding

After the candidates accept the job offer, the process of recruitment and onboarding begins. This is the last step of talent sourcing, however, it can be taken a step further with candidate feedback. 

7. Feedback from the Candidates

To successfully complete your sourcing efforts, it is essential to know how the candidates felt about it. Asking for feedback is a great method to value others' viewpoints and incorporate creative ideas from many angles. The latter is extremely important for enhancing your sourcing approach going forward.

Challenges of Strategic Talent Sourcing

“With great power comes greater responsibility” and with the mammoth-sized task of talent sourcing, recruiters often face many challenges.

1. Quality of Candidates: Although it goes without saying, hiring is a ruthless business, and HR departments from other companies also poach the same talent pool as you do. The challenge is not only in sourcing the best quality candidates but also amidst ever-mounting competition that often outbid the competition by paying employees more.

2. Poor Communication: It is the recruiting manager's responsibility to get the HR up to speed on the position if they are not familiar with it already, and it is the HR's responsibility to maintain open lines of communication throughout the hiring process. A valuable prospect might frequently be lost to the organization due to a simple communication issue, which could potentially harm the employer's brand.

3. Poor Candidate Experience: Every applicant who interviews with a company must leave with a positive interview experience overall, regardless of whether they are employed or not. This is a metric that is frequently overlooked. In addition to a negative review on Glassdoor, a mistake in this area would almost certainly cost the business excellent talent time, and resources.

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Benefits of Strategic Talent Sourcing

With strategic talent sourcing, comes the following benefits

1. Improved Candidate Quality

Spending hours honing your strategic talent-sourcing techniques gives you a deeper insight into the vacant role and what competencies make individuals succeed in this role. With this more thorough understanding, you may more efficiently streamline the process of hiring excellent people for your company.

2. Increases Diversity

You could have a talent pipeline that is as diversified as you require with a strict sourcing approach. The last-minute rush to fill available positions is eliminated through sourcing. As a result, you are free to take your time and carefully select the people to help you achieve your workplace diversity objectives.

3. Reduced Time to Hire

Long before you need to fill openings, talent sourcing helps you build relationships with professionals. Because of this, you always have a ready list of individuals to contact when the moment is appropriate. Sourcing candidates makes hiring twice as efficient, which helps you save time and money.

4. Upgrades your employer brand

This is a built-in benefit of strategic talent sourcing. Since developing your employer brand is essential to effective sourcing tactics, you would immediately notice a significant change in how your company is viewed and positioned in the market.

Best Practices of Strategic Talent Sourcing

1. Start Strategic Talent Sourcing Now

It takes a while to hire someone, and this is unlikely to change. In fact, it's a sure bet that the waiting time will increase as recruiting managers grow more selective thanks to technology.

According to a study conducted by LinkedIn's Economic Graph team, it typically takes 41 days to hire a new employee. However, this is true across a wide range of industries, and more specialized job roles frequently require a lot longer.

Anticipating growth and job vacancies is one of the best methods to avoid this delay. In this manner, you'll be prepared with a few candidates when you receive the investment or make the adjustment.

It is a good time to start redirecting your focus toward strategic talent sourcing today!

2. Shoutout that you’re hiring

Strategize to send out a message across every channel that you are hiring. After all, the message you convey is important. It can find the appropriate candidates or turn a bystander into one. Everything should be simple. Use word-of-mouth to your advantage.

For example, sign off your newsletters and emails with the message “We’re hiring.” Put the message on all your social media profiles and pages. Another approach could be to go offline and spread the word like wildfire.

3. Contact Passive Candidates

Passive candidates are everywhere. Even if they are not actively looking for a job, they are always up for hearing out new and exciting offers and job opportunities. Scan through social media and reach out to passive candidates. Who knows, they could someday turn into a valuable employee at your organization. 

Start Strategic Talent Sourcing Now!

As you can tell from all of the ideas listed above, talent sourcing isn’t something you do when you have an open position and then stop.

It’s an ongoing and constantly evolving practice, but it can save your company significant time and money if done right.

Ultimately, developing an efficient and effective talent-sourcing strategy is a key component of a company’s success. The ability to source high-quality candidates and convert successful hires can make or break a company.

In order to stay ahead of the competition and establish a highly efficient talent pipeline, companies are turning to data-driven recruiting and sourcing strategies that rely heavily on alternative data sources and providers, such as HireQuotient.

Book a demo today!

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Radhika Sarraf

Radhika Sarraf is a content specialist and a woman of many passions who currently works at HireQuotient, a leading recruitment SaaS company. She is a versatile writer with experience in creating compelling articles, blogs, social media posts, and marketing collaterals.

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