What are the most effective platforms for candidate sourcing?

Written by on September 23, 2019

A study by SHRM shows that 68% of recruiting professionals experience difficulty while recruiting candidates for full-time positions in their organizations. When asked the reasons behind the recruiting difficulty, a majority (51%) agreed on a low number of applicants among other reasons. 

Other factors being lack of necessary work experience, insufficient technical skills, and the organization’s inability to offer candidates competitive salaries.

As a consequence, it is becoming increasingly difficult to attract a good number of candidates while ensuring that they are time-worthy applicants and not just a bunch of resumes. But, with a consistent effort across a good mix of platforms, you can begin to see an anytime-full and fruitful recruiting pipeline.

In this blog, we are listing some of the most effective platforms for candidate sourcing. Depending on your hiring strategy, budget and the nature of each sourcing platform you can pick a mix of platforms that works for you.

 

Career site
Referrals
Job boards
Talent pipeline
Hackathons
Social media
Niche channels
Campus recruitments
Employer brand
Mobile recruiting


Career site

A career site is a page on your website which displays who you are as a company and your currently open positions. It is also a great way to tell people your culture stories – people, their experiences, possible career paths, perks and benefits and everything else you would like to share when inviting people to work with you.

Unlike other advertisements or job boards, in your career site, you are not limited by budget or space. They are cost-effective and help you showcase your brand for hiring. We took a look at a list of the top 10 global tech companies that candidates want to work for and compiled a quick list of tips that might prove useful when you design or redesign your career site.

Referrals

Referrals are cost-efficient and attract high-quality leads. A survey by Linkedin showed that referrals led to 48% of quality hires. They are faster to hire, perform better and stay longer in the company.

Pro tip

Organize creative referral drives and motivate your employees to refer people they know. You could hand out ‘we are hiring’ shirts, stickers or make it easy for them to think of names by giving out some fun forms with skills you are looking for. Set aside a few hours at work to encourage participation. Equip them with search terms if they are willing to look through their network. Incentivize it!

Ask leading questions.


In ‘Work Rules!’ by Lazlo Bock, the former VP of People at Google talks about how they realized that the most efficient way to get good referrals was to ask leading questions. Like, “Who’s the best designer you’ve ever worked with?” or “Who produced the best illustrations in your opinion?” so that they’d remember specific people and not just “Refer people you know”


Above all simply treat your employees right and give them an amazing place to work, and they will want to bring in their friends or other people they know. 

Job boards

Just like how you are looking for candidates, they are looking for you too and job boards help make the meet happen. They are tons of free and paid job boards out there to help you, source candidates.

Job boards are not just about posting ads and receiving applications, at least they should not be limited to do that. Here is a comprehensive list of ideas from Glassdoor to make the most out of your job board – job advertisements, impressive employer profiles, display ads when candidates are checking out your competitors, talent brand audits and so much more.

Pro tip

You can use niche job boards to target your job adverts to a particular audience. Some job boards have the tendency to bring in junk applicants, so craft your job descriptions carefully and highlight your deal-breakers. Use the right keywords, be engaging, and keep your information up-to-date.

A robust talent pipeline 

Talent pipelines are one of the most time-worthy and effort-worthy means of sourcing.

As a recruiter you meet and asses hundreds of resumes and real faces each day. That’s a lot of effort. A talent pipeline helps you put that effort to best use.

Every time you come across an extraordinary candidate and they aren’t a proper fit for your current role, you can add them to the talent pool and invite them again when an appropriate role opens. When you keep adding great candidates to your talent pool, it eventually becomes a reliable source of candidates for upcoming roles.

If consistently maintained, it saves you a lot of time and effort and helps you stay proactive and efficient.

Pro tip 

Plus, talent pools help engage conveniently and creatively with passive candidates –  you can send them content from time to time, invite them to events, open educational resources to them and so much more. The candidates in the pool eventually become easy-to-convert because you have already established a connection with them.

Hackathons

Hackathons do not have to be confined to marketing efforts, they are an amazing hack for recruiting techies as well. Hackathons are a creative, engaging and dynamic alternative to the traditional methods of hiring for companies of any size. 

Watching candidates work in a real-time environment helps you assess them better. Also, at the end of the day, you will simply not be settling for their technological skills, but be able to pick team players, problem solvers, and performers-under-pressure. This ensures that you hire great candidates who add real value to your business.

Through a hackathon, you will not only hire people for your current openings but you also meet quite some save-for-later candidates, who may not be your immediate hires, but will be perfect hires for an upcoming job. 

You will save a lot of time and effort while making a far better decision when compared to the traditional methods.

Pro tip 

Meet with people and build relationships instead of simply showing them a job offer. Learn about where they are from, their interests and strengths to build conversations with them.

Campus recruitments

When you are looking to bring fresh blood into the organization, recruiting students right from college is your best bet. Campus recruitments help attract low-cost talent and then experiment with a zillion long term possibilities.

There are so many ways you can recruit students from campus – telephonic interviews, video interviews, on-site interviews, career fairs, career counseling sessions, internships, etc. 

Pro tip 

You can tie-up with colleges and post jobs on their site exclusively for their students or alumni.

Focus on the employer brand

If you build a desirable employer brand, candidates will come looking for you. A study by LinkedIn shows that people are keen to know the culture and values of the company they want to work for. Here are a few things you can do to communicate or build your employer brand during your talent acquisition process.

  1. Employee stories (Real ones) – Get your employees to share their work-life stories and pin them on your career site. 
  2. Consistently engage with an audience on social media platforms with news, stories and or anything interesting from your organization.
  3.  Motivate your employees to put out interesting profiles and stories. You can nudge your marketing teams into helping them out.
  4. Leverage on your general marketing efforts and try to tap into them for recruiting as well.

Don’t just brand yourself as an amazing employer, do everything you can to genuinely be one.

Talent pipeline 

Talent pipelines are one of the most time-worthy and effort-worthy means of sourcing.

When an extraordinary candidate isn’t a proper fit for your current role, you do not want to forget them forever. That’s why you add them to the talent pool and invite them again when an appropriate role opens. When you keep adding great candidates to your talent pool, it eventually becomes a reliable source of candidates for upcoming roles.

If consistently maintained, it saves you a lot of time and effort and helps you stay proactive and efficient.

Pro tip 

Talent pools help engage conveniently and creatively with passive candidates –  you can send them content from time to time, invite them to events, open educational resources to them and so much more. The candidates in the pool eventually become easy-to-convert because you have already established a connection with them.


Social media

A study shows 84% of the organizations are using social media for recruiting while another 9% plan to use it in the near future. Also, 71% of the respondents agreed that the practice reduced the time to fill, management and salaried positions.

Social media is a great way to reach out to all kinds of people informally. You can quickly contact them for the first time, ask them for work samples, read articles by them and get to know them. 

  • You reaching out to a variety of candidates will boost the diversity in your workplace.
  • There will be so much more you learn about a candidate than what’s on their resumes. Sometimes, social media profiles also help validate the information on their resume. A study showed that 36% or the organizations disqualify candidates after checking their social profiles.
  • Your presence and engagement on social media definitely help build and communicate your employer brand to your audience while also helping you build a company-centered community that you can always turn to for hiring or referrals. 
  • There are plenty of search and targeting options on Social media. This means you can direct your job adverts and company information to specific groups of people based on geography, education, age, gender and so much more.

Recruiters who not familiar with these platforms might be hesitant to start investing in them right away but social media provides a lot of free and low-cost options for one to start experimenting with. 

Quick tips:

  • On Facebook, 1) use a hiring tab, so people can apply to your jobs right from Facebook. 2) Use ads to target specific locations, geographies or interests. 
  • When you are viewing a candidate’s profile, you can also check the ‘also viewed’ section to find similar candidates.
  • Build conversations over the same channel through which the candidate reached out to you. For example, if they reach out to you via Twitter, then communicate with them through Twitter.
  • If you are hiring creative talent on Pinterest, you could make boards with images of your job posts.

Niche channels 

When looking to hire candidates with very specific areas of expertise, you can try the niche channels like Quora, Slack, blogs, or other expert forums. You can look at the quality of their answers or content, interests, and involvement, and their networking skills or community engagement skills and so much more before you actually reach out to them.

Also, you can tell them what exactly impressed you or caught your attention when you reach out to them. It’s something that candidates will value and appreciate, making them want to connect with you. 

Mobile recruiting

Though it does not really fit into my list of sourcing platforms, I find it quite vital to share alongside the platforms. Everything on the journey for your applicant to you should be mobile-easy. That includes job postings, career site, application forms (some organizations accept Linkedin profiles in place of a resume upload), etc. 

All the big job boards like Indeed, LinkedIn or Monster have free apps for job seekers. So, if you can also give them an easier opportunity to apply via a smartphone, there will be more applicants for your jobs.

We hope you found this useful. 🙂 

 

Deborah Arputham

Content marketer for Freshteam. Loves insightful conversations and is always ready to start one.