4 Out of the Box Candidate Sourcing Techniques That Actually Work


Candidate sourcing, or proactively searching for and qualifying candidates rather than relying on incoming applications, has changed significantly in recent years. Between the rise of the web and social media, and the development of new recruiting technology, many wonder if strategic candidate sourcing is still a viable practice.

Fear not, dear recruiter. Candidate sourcing is alive and well. In fact, there are more ways than ever to find the candidates you’re looking for. However, seasoned recruiters are all too familiar with the most popular methods of sourcing candidates. So today we’re looking at some rather unconventional candidate sourcing techniques. Keep reading!

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Try new social platforms.

LinkedIn remains the top social platform for sourcing talent—but you already know that. But, did you know that recruiters on LinkedIn are seeing less and less success with the platform? In fact, 52% of hiring managers claim that passive candidate recruitment has been less effective because recruiters on LinkedIn are all competing for the same candidates.

To find more of your ideal candidates, you need to go where they spend the most time. And yes, that means platforms that aren’t traditionally used for recruiting. And while this strategy might not be right for everyone, we recommend that you don’t rule out the following platforms—particularly when hiring for more creative roles like marketing, social media, and design.

  1. Snapchat

You might not think of Snapchat as a business app, but some of its recent updates have caught the attention of recruiters. For example, the launch of the “Discover” section made it possible for companies to advertise their company. And—this isn’t just limited to products and services. If you’re looking to find tech-savvy professionals, you may want to consider advertising open positions to potential candidates or employees.

  1. Instagram

The popular photo-sharing app has become a major player in social recruiting over the past two years, thanks to the addition of Stories and live video. You can use these features in several different ways. First, you can have your employees share Stories on their own accounts that showcase what it’s like to work at your company. You can also allow employees to take over your brand’s account and share Stories to catch the eye of potential candidates.

  1. Reddit

Reddit is the self-proclaimed “homepage of the Internet”; it’s an aggregation website and a forum all in one. The site includes different pages, or ‘subreddits’ for specific subjects and there’s a subreddit for just about everything. Find the subreddits that are relevant to your brand—like the finance subreddit, for example—so you can post content and engage with users in your industry, some of whom may make excellent job candidates.

Broaden your referral program.

Employee referrals are not a new recruiting tactic—78% of recruiters say they find their best candidates through referrals. If you haven’t done so yet, establish an official referral program and strategy to generate more employee referrals.

And since you’re likely already familiar with referrals, we think you can take it a step further. Not only should you incentivize your employees to refer good candidates—you can leverage the information in your company contact database as well. Offer perks like discounted service to customers and business contacts outside of your organization if they refer a winning candidate. To get the word out, update your email signature to mention a role you’re hiring for. You might just see a whole new crop of referrals roll in.

And, in case you’re not sold on referrals, check out these statistics:

  • If you have an employee referral program, you can have an average retention rate of 46%, compared to the 33% retention rates of organizations that only use career sites.
  • Referral candidates are 3-4 times more likely to be hired than non-referral candidates.
  • New hires sourced via referral programs produce 25% more profit for their companies than new hires sourced via other means.

What are you waiting for?

Experiment with less traditional media types.

Do your job descriptions stand out from the pack? If they’re the standard bullet-point list of requirements and expectations, the answer is no. So why not use more attention-grabbing formats to advertise your open positions?

A simple two-minute video can provide a glimpse into your company culture much more effectively than a few bullet points. In fact, jobs get 36% more applications if accompanied by a video.

Promote your unique media across all channels and encourage your employees to share it as well. Does this take more effort than writing up a job description? Sure. But the creative approach won’t go unnoticed, and you’ll stand out from other companies and recruiters in a big way.

Attend non-recruiting events.

We’re sure you’ve attended or hosted a number of job fairs and recruiting events in the past. There’s only one problem: Not all of your best candidates are actively searching for jobs. So, branch out and attend events that have nothing to do with recruiting. That can mean industry-related professional events, bike races, marathons, local festivals, you name it. Get involved in the event if you can, either as a sponsor or by advertising your brand on your own. There’s no doubt you’ll meet new people, some of who may be interested in working for your company.

Key Takeaways

There you have it—four unique ways to change up your candidate sourcing strategy. As you can see, great job candidates are hiding in places you may have never considered. Mix some of these techniques with the tried-and-true sourcing methods you’re already using, and you’ll be sure to find top talent faster.

About the Author: Sam Holzman is the Content Marketing Specialist at ZoomInfo where he writes for their B2B blog. ZoomInfo is a leading B2B data provider that helps organizations accelerate growth and profitability. Sam regularly covers topics related to sales, marketing, and recruiting and likes to write about sports and travel in his free time.