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The challenge of sourcing in the recruitment process



Virginie Graziani

Talent Management & Synergologist

18 July 2017

Reading Time: 3 minutes


Sourcing helps to generate potential applications during a recruitment process to fill a post. Because the quality of recruitment depends on the quality of the preparatory sourcing, sourcing is considered an activity in its own right. ‘Sourcing’ applications means going out and finding candidates who would potentially be interested and/or are watching the jobs market.

To do it properly, you must be as exhaustive as possible at the outset. The research process involves gradually narrowing down the search criteria as candidates are selected. It is about finding skills rather than a role. It’s important to monitor any sourcing activities so that you have performance indicators for evaluating them.


How have the tools, methods and image of recruiters changed?


Though facilitated by web tools, sourcing is an increasingly complex activity. Social networks have ushered in dramatic changes for recruiters. Because of these changes, recruiters have had to develop new tools and methods. Recruiters are becoming ‘marketers’ for companies and for their image as employers. Candidates’ first image of their future employer is the first impression conveyed by the person introducing them to the vacancy and the company, whether this is an in-house recruiter or an external consultant.

So, it’s important for companies to choose a consultant who understands their corporate image to assist them with recruitment. From the company’s point of view, the recruiter should promote the vacancy externally with the help of internal ambassador employees. Nowadays company image is conveyed to candidates by a number of people.

For example, candidates can view the Viadeo profiles of some of the company’s current employees to gain an idea of what their future employer is like. HR has changed as a result. Human Resources has much in common with Marketing. While social media can be a really useful channel for promoting an employer’s ‘brand’, it can also be used for sourcing and recruitment, complementing more traditional tools that are still used.

Sourcing and employer marketing are a bit like the yin and yang of recruitment via social media. Used together, they can be very powerful, provided that the relationship between the company and the candidates is kept at a human, or indeed personal, level. Recruitment via social media is primarily a state of mind with human nature at its core. Obviously, it requires a strategy, but an experimental approach, and humility, are essential.


New roles in corporate HR

However, recruitment and HR more generally cannot change in isolation. Change has to happen in collaboration with a company’s other departments, such as marketing, PR and IT. This process of change affects many of our familiar landmarks. We have observed a change of paradigm, in which candidates are increasingly seen in effect as customers.

This has prompted reflection on the way recruiters and those around them treat the whole recruitment process. Interested in a ‘no-holds-barred’ discussion of HR topics? Why not sign up for our next Experts Meeting ‘Everything you ever wanted to know about… headhunting’





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