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Jul 13, 2017
This article is part of a series called Editor's Pick.

For those of you that don’t know, Tron is a Sci-Fi movie in which humans enter the computer world. These humans are known as “users,” while the residents of the computer world, or The Grid, are deemed “programs.” The Users work with the other Programs (i.e. Tron) to win against the evil dictator Master Control Program (MCP). For some reason, this reminds me of the recent “tool” wars with Chrome, LinkedIn, Google Jobs, Indeed, new AI and APIs talk, and the takeovers of Monster and Careerbuilder. The whole game is changing. And as we figure out what extensions we can and can’t use on certain professional networks, there are users here that can show us more tools and programs on the Grid. Users in the sourcing community, The SourceCon speakers, writers, the gurus, your teammates, and most importantly, you. Your thoughts, your ideas, and thinking yourself out of the situation can be the key to unlocking the information you need.

We all “fight for the users,” and in this article, I’ll go over a few ways how. Many of us write about how the paradigm is changing, but the goal here is to show everyone there are very strong and clear alternatives. Sometimes you’ve just got to build your Grid!

Many people don’t know about business directories like or, or that The Ladders and have free resumes searches. I’ve been surprised on several occasions when I thought I hit all the big avenues then try one of these. Who knew that so many scientists were on the Ladders or nurses were on Indeed?

You may not know about the horde of publications and patent sites out there, not only for scientists but electrical and mechanical engineers. Yes, engineers write stuff too.

In fact here’s a whole digital library where you can search by author or publication:

There are ways to search Facebook with tools like Hiretual, Intelligence Search, or Search is Back.

Or you can change the URL syntax if Facebook searchers aren’t pulling the results you need:

Directories can be great resources especially ones you randomly stumble upon with a two-word keyword search:

For example Google this:

Nonprofit directory

And you’ll find sites like this in your search results:

Registration boards, association sites, forums, and membership sites are also a wonderful resource for building additional pipelines, and quite honestly where I’ve been spending most of my time lately.

And many of them are “unlockable” via site search or registering as a member for free.


Nerding Out with a Mechanical Engineering Community

For instance, if start with the American Society of Mechanical Engineers:

You can search for more data with an asterisk or “wildcard:”*

Notice some URL patterns, and adjust your site search around some concepts of the group and member syntax:

Group URL* inurl:groupmembers.aspx

Profile URL:

Adjusted Master Profile String:*

Now I can pull what I was looking for and then extract the data for free via Dataminer:* engineering manager* MEP


Other Social Networks Exist (Outside the One that Shall Not Be Named)

There are other social networks out there as well; some focused on specific populations.  For instance, Rallypoint is a military professional social network which is free to search and connect.

Archinect is another such networking site for the architectural types.

You can search with the built-in search engine. However, if you find that too limiting, you can site search for prospects as well.

Google this: profile resume contact TX

Notice the profile resume contact in my search string, why do I add this you may ask, this is why:

It pulls a list of profiles differently. Look for patterns in the profiles. Often if you put in heading or titles, it will hone your search. Apply this to all “profile” sites you visit; it can help pull a targeted list of profiles instead of sifting through large amounts of irrelevant data.


So I got a name, now what? Cross Reference!

When you have a name and job title but find it tough to gather more info on a person, it may feel like a #facepalm moment.  However, there are new ways to cross reference prospects quickly. Hiretual’s new contact and analytics feature gives us a quick look and has both a desktop option and extension in case you get paranoid.  One of the things I like about this feature is that I can plug in a certification in the “organization name” field and pull info, which is huge for anyone in healthcare recruitment.

You also use the “Search All” People Finder tool on OSINT. In my experience people, finders can yield mixed results, but this tool hits most of them.


Enough NerdSpeak, Let’s Get Real!

Now let me be serious for a moment, this community means everything to many of us. We don’t like seeing people stuck, hit a wall, or face an obstacle they can’t get through. We are all here to help, ask anyone of us!

For me, it has always been about helping the people in the room, no matter what the situation, but it’s amazing how much we are all learning from each one of you: the thinkers, tinkerers, experimenters, researchers, the users.

So Sourcers, help #FightForTheUsers and let’s drop the tools, tricks, and any awesome knowledge you have NOW! If you have an idea, thought, or wicked hack, email with it! Thanks for reading, and I hope this helps!

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