5 Phone Tips – Simple Sayings For Sourcer Success On The Phone

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May 24, 2016
This article is part of a series called Editor's Pick.

Today I would like to follow-up on my previous post on 5 Ways Sourcers Can Successfully Engage Candidates Through Direct Email, by providing tips on how sourcers can enhance their sourcing results by improving their comfort and confidence on the phone with prospective candidates.

My intention in this article is not to make yet another cliché argument that sourcers need to get on the phone or be more aggressive. Sourcers are hearing this so much that they are simply tuning it out, and for good reason.

broken record

My goal is to help sourcers become more comfortable and confident on the phone so that they will:

  1. Feel more comfortable and confident being on the phone on their own time 
  2. Become more effective sourcers and heroes to their hiring managers, by learning to get something out of every call.

I am hoping sourcers can achieve this success even during those uncomfortable phone conversations when candidates give a hard “NO” or “not interested” terse response. In this article, I’ve included a list of the five most common objections and questions you will hear from candidates when pitching a job. Below each objection and question are my suggestions on different techniques that can be used to respond to candidates in a manner that will simplify the dialogue and give you the encouragement and belief you need to keep the dialogue open with your prospective candidate.


1. “I’m not looking”

Instead of saying – “ Thank you for letting me know. Goodbye”

You can say –  “That’s great! Top talent and candidates like yourself rarely are actively looking as they are able to get great jobs at great companies and deliver great results and their current employers know it. Frankly, it is my job to speak with people like you, as actively looking job seekers, in this day and age, can find employers on their own. With the understanding that you are not actively looking, please tell me candidate X, is there anything at all in your current job or company you wish to improve? Perhaps my company/client represents an improvement versus your current situation.”


2. “How much does this job pay?”

Instead of Saying – “This pays $85-$100k or “I don’t know. How much are you looking to make?”

You can say – “That’s a great question! At this time, there is no set salary range.  Nothing is set in stone.  My job is to help the recruiting team and the hiring leaders first understand the market for their needs. They are fully prepared to pay competitively and enticingly in the market for top talent. If you are the one they wish to hire then you are the market. Does that make sense? That being said from what we have seen thus far, those making less than $75k tend to not meet our qualifications and those making more than $115k tend to already be in higher level positions than this job.”


3. “Can you send me the job description?”

Instead of saying – “Yes. Right away.”

You can say – “I would be happy to do so after a brief discussion of the job so that you have proper context. Frankly, the actual job description is very generic and does not give much insight on the true nature of the job. There are a lot of details I have that are not in the job description.”


4. “Please tell me some non-basic detail of the job (that you don’t know that answer too)?”

Instead of saying – “I don’t know. Let me get back to you”

You can say – “That’s a great question for the interview!” Frankly, as a nonpractitioner, you are delving into details of the job that are best discussed directly with the hiring manager as he can provide the answers to all of your questions on the full details of the job.


5. I’m not a fit for this job, therefore, I am not interested.

Instead of saying- ‘Thank you for letting me know. Good luck with your job search!”

You can say –  “Thank you for letting me know your thoughts. I’m curious, could you tell me why you feel you are not a good fit?” – candidate answers with a good reason why they are not a fit—thank you.  “That is very helpful insight. Now that you know the details of the job, I was wondering do you know of anyone that could benefit from speaking with me about this opportunity?”



This article is part of a series called Editor's Pick.
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