Next week, at SourceCon Seattle, John Childs will presenting Five Easy Steps to Building Winning Boolean Search Strings. Prior to the event, be sure to download a copy of his new ebook. I caught up with John this week to discuss his involvement in SourceCon, below is our conversation.
Tell us about your background, how you became a sourcing professional, and what you do currently.
I started my career as an electrical engineer, but didn’t like it, so I gravitated towards sales and sales management in semiconductors and other electronic components. Next came my career as a recruiter which I’ve been doing for the last 20+ years. After working as a full life-cycle recruiter, the last seven years I have been working as pure sourcer, first with a defense company and then a mobile phone manufacturer. Currently I work as a Sr. Sourcer for Huawei whose focus is ICT (Information and Computer Technology). This covers a broad spectrum of products from telecom equipment for the major carriers to cell phones.
Tell us about the presentation you have planned for SourceCon. What takeaways should attendees expect?
In the past when I’ve taught classes on Boolean, I would start by going over what AND & OR do when putting together a Boolean search string. Almost every time I would look at my audience and see eyes rolling as if to say, “yeah, yeah, we’ve seen this before and we know all about AND’s & OR’s”.
But when I put up a slide with a req/job description and asked them to write the Boolean search string that would find candidates for this specific requisition, it was like pulling down a window shade. A glaze would come over their faces and I knew I had lost my audience. I would plow ahead and continue my teaching, but my audience had already put their minds into ‘Park’ and pulled up the emergency brake. This was frustrating because I wanted these sourcers and recruiters to “get it.” Finally, I found an easy solution.
I have a passion for making these techniques work and I also have a passion for teaching sourcers and recruiters take their skill set to the next level.
Attendees will come away feeling very confident in following five easy and logical steps in writing winning Boolean search strings. Their main takeaway will be this thought, “All these years I’ve thought it was such a mysterious subject, but now it’s hard to believe how simple the basics really are!”
Why would it be unwise for someone to miss your session?
There is a lot of confusion and misunderstanding out there regarding Boolean, so much so that many want to avoid it if possible, but attending this session will be your chance to see Boolean presented in an easy and simple way that you’ve probably never seen before. I am writing a book on this subject with the title, The Boolean Book for Sourcers and Recruiters featuring iPROBE (Integrated Power Recruiting One, Boolean Enabled). Since I am still in process of writing the book, I would like to solicit feedback from you as to what they would like to see either clarified or added to a book on Boolean.
Have you been to SourceCon in the past? What are you most excited about?
I haven’t been to a SourceCon before, but am certainly excited about attending.
How do you feel about the future of sourcing?
As many facets of internet media continue to expand at an exponential growth rate, the need for sourcing will grow at a comparable rate as sourcing becomes an even larger part of the overall recruiting equation.
What new tools are you experimenting with that you find interesting?
As you probably know, different databases have different ways (different syntax) you have to write Boolean search strings. Infogist will, with one click of your mouse, convert your AND, OR, NOT, AND NOT, plus +, minus -, etc. to be made compatible with all of these resources. With you only having to write one string, you can simultaneously search 580 paid and free databases! For the paid databases you would need a license and password as usual.
Tell us something interesting about yourself that has nothing to do with what you do professionally.
I just enjoy being with my family of origin and with my church family. I also enjoy playing golf and my 12 string guitar.