From April to September 2021, over 24 million American employees resigned. HR professionals everywhere have felt the strain of this so called “Great Resignation.” But, in spite of record resignation rates, the unemployment rate in April 2021 was only 3.8%. In such a competitive labor market, how can leaders acquire today’s top talent while preventing their teams from getting burned out?
Enter, sourcing. Sourcers help facilitate the recruiting process, but take on a different role from recruiters. Think of a sourcer’s role as a hunter, not a gatherer, and an alternative to the outdated “post and pray” method of recruitment. While recruiters’ jobs comprise of interactions with candidates, sourcers’ jobs involve more researching and networking.
Sourcers v. Recruiters
Chris “Aquaman” Carver, Sourcer at Wayne Technologies, says, “Recruiters traditionally, and still are, engaging in sourcing practices. Should there be a division between recruiters and sourcers? And is that going to be right for you and your organization?”
To determine that, we first have to look at the differences and similarities between sourcing and recruiting.
Sourcers have a data-focused role, and they’re skilled in creative problem solving and research. Sourcers focus on the talent pipeline and are less likely to interact with candidates when they become applicants. Recruiters, on the other hand, are deeply involved in the entire hiring process, often handling job postings, screenings, applicant tracking, and interviews. Recruiters excel in building relationships, communicating, and working with people.
Consider the standard process for recruiting talent:
- Sourcing candidates,
- Messaging candidates,
- Screening candidates,
- Submitting candidates, and
- Processing candidates.
Sourcers can handle the first two steps, while steps 3-4 are transitional phases where both recruiters and sourcers can screen and submit candidates. At the final step, processing candidates, recruiters take full responsibility.
How Sourcing Can Combat the Great Resignation
In an especially competitive job market, sourcers can help relieve some of the burden placed on recruiters. Sourcing aids in the early stages of recruiting, like when reaching out to candidates, as it provides data that paints a clear picture of top talent and the labor market.
Talent can be divided into two categories: active and passive candidates. Active candidates are people who are in the process of searching for a new job—these are the people viewing and applying to job postings. Passive candidates, though while looking at new job listings, are not actually applying to them. 79% of working professionals are passively looking for new employment.
While nearly 4 out of 5 candidates don’t end up applying for a job, when a sourcer is involved in this process, the company can reach out again to a passive candidate with a new opportunity, or even just to touch base on the person’s job search. After all, 99% of job seekers would accept an interview if another employer approached them.
“A good sourcer,” Carter says, “can keep a pipeline going for multiple roles.” At any given time, a company could have potential candidates ready to hear about the latest opening.