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Apr 14, 2020

This is a time where many things seem up in the air.  Whether you are working or you’ve been laid off, the uncertainty of the future is never far from your mind.  While I can’t be a solution for every problem that is going on right now, I can offer some ideas to help sourcers and team leaders.  Here are 7 things that you can do during these times.  And these are not the only ideas.  I am publishing a series of articles on this subject from various members of our community.

  1. Sourcers Who Have Been Laid Off – If you have been laid off, look at industries and companies that are still hiring: Healthcare, medical devices, pharma, Amazon, Walmart, etc. Sourcing jobs at a local or state government office can be another place to look.  They need help with state-run healthcare and managing jobless benefits and infrastructure.  Set up a simple Google Search like:
    jobs (sourcer OR "talent acquisition" OR "full life cycle") ("san jose" OR "santa clara" OR "mountain view" OR "palo alto" OR sunnyvale OR cupertino)


    jobs (sourcer OR "talent acquisition" OR "full life cycle") (remote OR virtual OR wfh OR "work from home") (healthcare OR nursing OR "medical center" OR hospital)

    …once you are satisfied with the results, then click the “Alerts” in Google Jobs, so you can regularly receive new notifications.

    Many sourcers in our community have put together resources that can help you.  For example, Bret Feig has a page that pulls together many use links for job searches, layoff lists, training resources, and other related news.  You will find it very useful.  Check it out here:

    One of many examples from this list is a page on Levels.  This aggregates a list of companies that are still hiring and the verticals they are hiring for.  If you are job hunting, then you want to target these companies first!

  2. Training & Upskilling – Your company may have a hiring freeze or you may not be working, but this is a perfect time to hone your skills in sourcing and recruiting.  You may not have had time before, but this is a good opportunity to do so.  Skills that are valuable for sourcers include: the ability to turn reqs into actionable searches, automation of search results, finding contact information for candidates, tracking email campaigns, enriching profiles with more information, and web scraping.
    Any of these will increase your value within your current or next job.  Learn as much as you can online.  SourceCon Academy is a great way to do this!  Also, there are some free resources and webinars like this upcoming one for Healthcare Sourcing.
  1. Talent Mapping / Candidate Pipelining – This is a necessary action to focus on during these times.  Your company might have a hiring freeze but you know exactly what they are looking for because you hire these candidates all the time!  There are many tools (mention paid for tools) and search techniques that you can use to build up your talent pipeline.  Here are some recent articles from the SourceCon community:

Talent Mapping for Free, written by yours truly, covers all the search strategies that a sourcer might use in order to put together a talent pool for a job in a specific part of the world.
These 3 tools could help you with your talent mapping.  Anastasia Antonova talks about the tools that can help you with sourcing as well as organization afterwards.
• If your hiring manager really likes to visualize the data, then this article by Jessie Caudron will be very helpful for you.  She demonstrates an easy way to take your sourcing data and turn it into a talent heat map!

Get approval from your hiring managers beforehand.  Figure out the most pressing needs once the hiring machine starts up again.  Map out the talent, organize it, find contact information, and have it ready to go.  Do this for all of your req buckets.

  1. Candidate Messaging – This is a must for everyone.  If you still are sending out emails and voicemails to candidates, then you have to reassess the messaging.  There is no way that the same message that you were sending out during the first week of January can be the same now.  Be sensitive to the candidate’s situations, make sure you understand that they may be working from home with 3 kids and that your email might get ignored.
    Also, partner with your recruiters, hiring managers and HR reps: if you can change your job descriptions to account for the COVID-19 situation, then do so right away.  New jobs that offer remote/virtual options are going to be the only ones looked at.  Unless you are hiring for one of the critical industries.
  1. TA Managers – No doubt about it.  Your team has probably been sliced and diced by this.  Some of the best things you can do are:

• Keep the team focused on available work – motivation and morale are important to keep everything together
• Work on talent pipelining – be ready for the future and hit the ground running
• Expand their roles – this helps pick up the slack within the company due to layoffs.  It also makes the employee more valuable because they are learning new skills (i.e. recruiters learning how to source or sourcers who learn how to scrape mass amounts of data).

  1. Independent / 1099 Sourcers – Sometimes in downturns, companies will cut staffing headcount.  But most of the time, they still need to hire.  If you are running your own consulting business, there are still opportunities here.  For example, a company may have just let go of their sourcers and kept just a few recruiters.  Those who remain will be over worked and probably not used to the efforts that it takes to source the candidate pipelines that are required.
    So when it comes to tracking down your next gig, target the companies that still post jobs.  Then reach out to either the TA Leader or the individual recruiter.  Showcase your ability to build candidate pipelines quickly and find contact info.  Also talk about messaging and your ability to personalize individually or through an email campaign.  These valuable skills are not going away anytime soon.
  1. Help Yourself / Help Others – Help others review their resume and /or profile.  You know what a good resume looks like. You also know what a good LI profile looks like.  Help others get there!  While you’re at it, fix up your own!  You’ve probably been so busy that you’ve forgotten to update your LI profile for the last 2 years.  And your resume that you’ve been putting off?  Yep, now’s the time.  You need to be ready once hiring picks up…and it will!!

In Conclusion

Yes, things won’t get back to “normal” anytime soon.  And the “new normal” may not be the same thing that we were used to before.  Simple searches and deductive reasoning can steer you in the right direction.  And don’t forget the most important thing in all of this: sometimes when you help others, you also end up helping yourself.

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