Talent Sourcing

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What is Talent Sourcing? Definition, Tips, and More

Kathleen Dongo

When emerging in the HR world, a couple of buzzwords would catch your eye. In this article we will give prominence to this method used by Recruiters and Talent Hunters called “Talent Sourcing”. 

If you are also interested in finding some top-notch strategies to source talents, you can dive into this article where we will describe the infallible 4 Steps Guide.

So What is Talent Sourcing? 

Talent sourcing is defined as the entire process of identifying talent, researching job profiles, generating interviews, and networking with potential job candidates in order to convert people into job seekers.

In other words, it is the term used to describe the attraction of passive candidates to a position since they have experience and skills that fit the position we seek.

But remember that the main goal of talent sourcing is to generate a steady stream of highly qualified candidates.

What is the process of Talent Sourcing?

In terms of the process, every company possesses a distinct structure and business model, necessitating the development of its own supply process tailored to meet its specific requirements. 

In light of this, the sourcing process can be broken down into five fundamental steps.

As we delve into these steps, the process of talent sourcing encompasses distinct elements specific to talent sourcing, while also sharing commonalities with the recruitment process.

Let’s start with the 5 Step process

  1. Analyzing and planning:
    The talent sourcing process commences by establishing a well-defined plan that guides the search towards areas where a concentration of desirable candidates is likely to be found.
  2. Start sourcing candidates:
    Once the sourcing plan is in place, the subsequent step involves identifying, reaching out to, and cultivating relationships with potential candidates.

    For effective sourcing techniques, refer to the “Talent Sourcing Tips section” below.
  3. Assessing candidates:
    Once a pool of qualified applicants has been generated, the next phase involves evaluating the candidates.

    This includes identifying individuals best suited for the specific position and those who align closely with the organization’s culture and values.
  4. Hiring those superstar candidates:
    Following a comprehensive interview process, the top candidate is offered the position.

    Moreover, this involves negotiating the terms of the employment contract and ultimately hiring them.
  5. Onboarding:
    The final stage of the talent sourcing process encompasses the onboarding of new employees to their new job and to the company.

The difference between Recruitment and Talent Sourcing

The primary distinction between Recruitment and Talent Sourcing lies in their respective objectives. Recruitment focuses on converting active candidates, also known as applicants, into successful placements for vacant positions.

On the other hand, Talent Sourcing aims to transform individuals who are not initially considered candidates into viable prospects.

Hence, the quest for talent is the initial phase of the recruitment process and plays a crucial role in establishing a robust pool of skilled individuals.

We can say that the connection between talent sourcing and recruitment is intertwined and mutually beneficial.

Numerous recruiters engage in talent sourcing activities using diverse channels like job boards, LinkedIn, and other platforms, to find suitable candidates for specific positions.

Indeed, Recruiters oversee the entire hiring process, while also collaborating with talent acquisition representatives as needed.

Conversely, talent scout typically dedicates their efforts to generating leads for a limited number of applications.

They closely collaborate with recruiting and hiring managers, aiming to proactively source and identify talented individuals, generate leads, and generate interest in open positions.

In essence, talent sourcing and recruiting are interconnected processes but have significant differences.

We’ve written extensively on this topic – check out our article on key differences in talent sourcing vs recruitment.

Some Tips

1. Identify talent aligning with your company’s needs and consider the long-term company goals

Talent sourcing goes beyond solely identifying highly talented individuals.

It also involves recognizing and finding out individuals whose skills and capabilities align with the specific needs of your organization’s growth.

In other words, it is crucial to find talent that not only possesses exceptional abilities but also complements and addresses the unique requirements of your business.

Remember that you also need to consider candidates that are motivated and have the potential to grow in your company.

2. Craft a job description tailored to your talent requirements

It seems easier than it actually’s. But it’s very relevant to have a straightforward, explicit, and appealing job description that should well-describe the requirements and the desired skill sets.

By emphasizing your talent needs in your job advertisements, you increase the likelihood of attracting numerous highly qualified candidates who meet your specific criteria.

Establish an optimal candidate profile.

Prior to initiating the candidate sourcing process, it is essential to construct a comprehensive profile outlining the attributes of your ideal candidate, like that you can narrow your search and be more time-effective.

Consider factors such as desired work experience, specific job-related skills, preferred skill sets, salary expectations, flexibility in the workplace, personality traits, and more.

By defining these criteria, you can effectively guide your sourcing efforts toward identifying candidates closely matching your envisioned candidate profile.

3. Harness the power of talent pools

Unleash your potential by thoroughly examining and leveraging the ideal talent reservoirs for your specific role.

By crafting comprehensive visions of your desired candidate profile, you’ll effortlessly navigate the sea of talent and effectively assess your options.

Keep in mind that diverse work platforms exist, each with its own niche expertise!

So remember that securing the perfect talent requires comprehending the adequate platform where individuals with coveted abilities congregate.

4. Connect personally with your prospects.

Establishing a personal connection with candidates enhances the recruitment process and enriches their overall experience.

For instance, when reaching out to potential candidates, tailoring your messages proves to be a game-changing approach, resulting in higher response rates and making candidates feel genuinely valued.

If candidates perceive your outreach as a mere generic email or automated message, they are less likely to engage.

By sending personalised messages, you implicitly convey your genuine interest and care for their unique qualities.

Consider incorporating details such as their company name, position title, responsibilities, specific skills, and why they could be a potential fit for the role.

While it’s important to avoid overwhelming candidates or rejecting them outright, utilizing personal connections to communicate information about your organization’s culture, relevant teams, and company objectives will attract a larger pool of candidates.

According to our experience, we recommend employing a three-email approach, with the first message being a personalized introduction where you elaborate on the position and express your specific interest in the candidate.

If they don’t respond, follow up with two additional messages.

This strategy maximizes the likelihood of receiving a response and demonstrates your sincere interest in the candidate.

5. Ensure a robust pool of passive leads.

Talent acquisition is a continual journey that necessitates nurturing a thriving candidate network, even if you’re not actively recruiting them.

Stay connected with your passive leads by engaging in regular communication to keep them updated on your company’s advancements and extend well wishes on special occasions like birthdays.

Maintaining contact at least twice a year demonstrates your ongoing interest and fosters a lasting relationship with potential future candidates.

6. Use employer branding as a sourcing strategy

To successfully attract the right talent, it is crucial to understand the brand narrative you aim to convey to your ideal candidates.

The way you manage candidate experience touchpoints throughout the sourcing process significantly impacts their perception of your employer brand.

Each interaction holds value and presents an opportunity to establish credibility for your brand.

This approach aids in presenting a compelling case for your organization and the specific role you are sourcing for.

The same principle applies even when you steer away from certain candidate pools during the sourcing process.

7. Think out of the box and find new methods to source.

Avoid stagnation in your hiring process by continuously seeking ways to improve your talent source. Embracing trying new things and errors is essential for progress.

Whenever you encounter a promising new strategy that captures your interest or that of your recruiting team, devise a thoughtful plan to experiment with it.

Seek feedback from stakeholders and meticulously measure the outcomes to gauge its effectiveness.

This proactive and adaptive approach ensures ongoing improvement and optimization in your talent acquisition endeavors.


Talent sourcing is paramount in a recruiting process because it not only brings new and improved passive candidates to your positions but also allows you to streamline the process and reduce the time to hire.

The best talent search teams are able to cultivate a strong, steady stream of high-quality leads who remain engaged and interested in joining your organization.

By having a clear hiring process, using best practices, and constantly looking for ways to revise your strategy, you will maximize the utility and profit of your talent-hiring operation!

So, what are you waiting for to start using Talent Sourcing strategies

Reach out to us to see how we can help you with your sourcing and recruitment needs.

Kathleen Dongo

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