All-in-all guide about sourcing

Transform your hiring game with a robust sourcing strategy! Focused on passive candidates, it’s the secret to staying competitive and making hiring a strategic advantage. In this post, we’ll spill the beans about a productive sourcing strategy from aligning with hiring managers to leveraging social media and powerful sourcing tools.

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All-in-all guide about sourcing


  1. Candidate sourcing in recruitment: What you need to know
  2. Why sourcing process is challenging
  3. How to develop a sourcing strategy
  4. Effective candidate outreach strategies
  5. Talent sourcing tools
  6. Conclusion

1. Candidate sourcing in recruitment: What you need to know

Building a solid sourcing strategy is the initial move toward bringing in excellent talent. Yet, creating a pipeline through active sourcing takes time, typically 1–3 months (covering outreach, engagement, application, and the overall process). The outcomes don’t happen right away, highlighting the significance of having a well-established hiring plan. This involves forecasting the required hirings and fine-tuning the sourcing process. Keep in mind that candidate sourcing is an activity that generally demands about 4 hours of research daily.

What is sourcing in recruitment?

In the broader recruitment process, sourcing involves seeking out passive candidates —those who don’t directly apply to a job opening. These passive candidates may come from referrals, searches on various tools, or individuals participating in events as guests or speakers. The primary aim of a Sourcer is candidate source or to generate interest and engage people to apply for your job openings.

There are multiple methods for recruiting sourcing, and their application depends on various factors, including the types of the best candidates required, the preferences of hiring managers or recruiters, past success or experimentation with specific methods, and the resources available to the sourcer or sourcing recruiter.

Robust sourcing strategies are beneficial for staying competitive in the market and turning hiring into a strategic advantage for the company. Sourcing involves the activities of searching, engaging, and maintaining a robust network among potential candidates.

2. Why sourcing process is challenging

Here are top challengers that sourcers typically face:

Main recruitment and sourcing challenges
  • Challenging Positions: The top talents are often not actively seeking jobs and are unlikely to apply online. Active sourcing enables us to find and connect with the specific individuals we’re searching for.
  • Predictability and Planning: A proven sourcing strategy assists us in attracting the right candidates, reducing sourcing time, and focusing on key channels. This allows us to accurately predict the time it takes to make a hire.
  • Messaging: Sourcing serves as a tool to promote our company’s brand. Similar to marketing, it’s crucial to ensure we have the right communication at each stage of the process to target candidates effectively.
  • Other Positions: Sourcing isn’t limited to difficult roles; it can be applied to nearly every position in the company, from interns to senior profiles. The essence of sourcing is to adopt a Sherlock Holmes mindset and think creatively to discover the best talents in the market.

3. How to develop a sourcing strategy

To ensure successful sourcing efforts before contacting candidates, it’s crucial to establish a clear strategy. Here are some steps to kickstart the project:

  • Align with Hiring Managers
    Before reaching out to candidates, secure alignment with the hiring manager. Understand the team’s needs by being engaged with the community. Define 5 to 10 key requirements, ask challenging questions, and clarify the role’s activities.
  • Talent Mapping
    In situations like executive roles or opening a new office, targeting a specific pool of individuals is essential. Talent mapping is valuable when the profile is highly specific or starting a team from scratch. Understand the market and identify ideal companies before reaching out to potential candidates.
  • Nurture
    In today’s competitive hiring market, relying solely on cold emails is often insufficient. Incorporate additional materials such as perks, branding responses, event speakers, and star talents representing the company. Check Glassdoor reviews and blog posts to actively engage candidates.
  • List Building
    Instead of approaching candidates individually, create a list. Segmenting the list allows personalized messages without compromising efficiency. This approach is particularly beneficial for rapidly scaling hiring in roles like sales, customer operations, and engineering, where both volume and quality are crucial.

4. Effective candidate outreach strategies

Effective candidate outreach strategies

What to use to outreach to candidates the right way?

  • Templates
    Creating reusable templates is vital for efficiency. Build a template with information that can be utilized repeatedly, allowing customization based on the specific candidate and role.
  • A/B Testing
    Experiment to identify what works best. Test outreach headlines, copy content, and treat the process like a marketing campaign. Determine the most effective approaches to enhance outreach.
  • Be Everywhere
    Position yourself where candidates are present. Explore platforms like GitHub, Stack Overflow, Quora, Behance, and other relevant channels to increase visibility and engagement.
  • Metrics
    Establish Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for your sourcing strategy. Ask critical questions like: How many candidates are being added to the pipeline? How effective is the strategy overall?
  • Multiple Channels
    Leverage both work and personal email channels as needed. Reach out to candidates through various channels to maximize response rates and broaden your outreach.
  • Campaigns
    Develop consistent content as part of campaigns. Utilize content to engage and raise awareness about your business, contributing to effective branding efforts in the talent market.

5. Talent sourcing tools

Sourcing tools

Twitter and Facebook:

  • Utilize Twitter’s advanced search for targeted hashtag exploration, connecting with potential passive candidates.
  • Employ Facebook’s graph search to find individuals meeting specific criteria, generating a comprehensive list of matching profiles.

More Social Media:

  • Platforms like InstagramReddit, and Snapchat, while less popular for recruiting, offer a lower competition landscape for recruiters.

Portfolio/Work Sample Sites:

Tracking Tools:

  • Leverage tools like People Search and HireEZ for efficient online community engagement. Hunter is another platform for discovering contact information, especially social media profiles.

In Person:

  • Explore and to discover relevant events and identify standout participants. Attend or host hackathons, career fairs, campus events, and your own recruiting events.


  • Leverage the power of referrals, which account for 60% of hires. Clearly communicate the role and essential requirements to co-workers for effective referrals.

Past Hiring Processes:

  • Review your Applicant Tracking System (ATS) for a potential talent pool. Candidates who were not selected previously may have gained valuable skills and experience.

Tools and Services:

  • Consider using tools like MakeDealEntelo, and AngelList for additional sourcing assistance, providing access to extensive databases of resumes.

At FreyStaff, we use MakeDeal for message templates, real-time analytics of our sourcers and recruiters performance, and better motivation inside the recruitment team. As a result, we save up to 5 hours per week, close positions 10x faster, onboard employees 20% faster, and save 30% of our recruitment costs.

6. Conclusion

Building a robust sourcing strategy lays the foundation for attracting top-tier talent. Sourcing, focusing on passive candidates, is critical for staying competitive and turning hiring into a strategic advantage. Active sourcing facilitates the identification of elusive talents, enhances predictability and planning, serves as a branding tool, and applies to diverse roles within the company. 

Developing an effective sourcing strategy involves aligning with hiring managers, talent mapping, nurturing engagement, and building lists. Successful candidate outreach strategies encompass template creation, A/B testing, strategic online presence, metric establishment, leveraging multiple channels, and organizing campaigns.

To enhance the sourcing process, various tools and platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, other social media, portfolio sites, tracking tools, in-person events, referrals, and past hiring processes can be employed. These resources, coupled with services like MakeDeal (our must-have), Entelo, or AngelList, offer valuable support in creating a dynamic talent pipeline. By adopting a holistic approach, companies can transform sourcing into a powerful and efficient element of their recruitment strategy, ensuring a continuous influx of top-quality candidates.