Making the Leap from Sourcer to Recruiter

A potential career move for a sourcer is to become a full lifecycle recruiter. After all, sourcing can be considered a fundamental stepping stone to becoming a full desk recruiter. Sourcing can also be considered a ridiculously challenging profession that many excel at and will continue to perfect throughout their careers.

Through sourcing, you learn all the valuable technical skills needed to successfully search and find candidates, which is the backbone of any successful job placement. For many sourcers though, once candidates are found, and sometimes a first round introduction made, their role ends, and the recruiter takes over. It is the recruiter who walks the candidate through the interview process and engages in the client management side of the position.

Outside of the technical aspects of search, the average recruiter’s position centers around managing both candidate and client expectations, advising hiring managers, and ensuring a strong candidate experience with timely feedback.

 

Client Management

Once a new req is opened, it is the role of any recruiter to manage client expectations. As an industry expert, you should have a rough idea of what the market looks like before approaching the search, and communicate what you think the reasonable timelines, compensation ranges and candidate flows will look like. An administrative assistant pipeline is going to look a lot different from a Tableau expert. It’s important for the person in charge of hiring to know how hard it will be to find their desired skill set and how long it will take. As the process continues, loop in your client on challenges you may be facing, and brainstorm potential solutions together. In a healthy recruiter-client relationship the search will feel like a partnership of efforts built on trust and respect.

 

Candidate Management:

 

The Selling: Depending on the scope of the sourcers’ previous role, they may have had some interaction with initially selling a position to the candidate. Or at least enough to get the candidate interested in setting up a conversation. It is the job of the recruiter to take this a step further and dig into the details of both the position and the candidate’s true qualifications. This is crucial as when a sourcer becomes a recruiter they have to start thinking more about their professional reputation in their industry. While a client rarely knows a sourcer’s name, they do know the recruiters they work with. Therefore it is critical to have a deeper knowledge of a candidate, as it is your reputation on the line, and it is the recruiter, not the sourcer, who will be blamed for any perceived lack of success in filling the role.

Additionally, when it comes to candidates, the devil’s in the details. Your goal should be to get to know the candidate’s personal, professional, and financial needs, and what it will take for them to accept the job. Too many great job offers have been left on the table due to the recruiter not knowing that the candidate’s spouse is not 100% on board with a relocation. When these moments happen, it can jeopardize the recruiter’s reputation.

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Recruiter Tip: Take excellent notes and save them in your database/ATS. Sometimes small notes like where their spouse’s family is located can be a huge leg up on current and future searches.

The Expectations: When engaging with the candidate, it is also the recruiter’s role to be a coach. When your candidate has a last round interview for a position, it is your role to make sure they feel fully prepared. Get them any info about the process or the organization prior, so they go in fully ready to put their best foot forward. If you know the hiring manager loves to ask a trick case question, tell your candidate ahead of time so that they won’t be on the spot to formulate an answer.

Once a candidate has gotten into an interview process, they are often eager to hear about feedback or potential timelines. In a perfect situation, recruiters would have the answers to all their candidate questions immediately. However, the world doesn’t work that way. It is the role of the recruiter to keep the candidate engaged and set the expectation of when feedback would normally come through, or decisions being made. This is especially crucial for candidates who may be interviewing with multiple organizations simultaneously.

 

Final Recruiter Tip- Separate the Emotion

Learning to separate yourself from getting too invested in a single candidate or client is something that all recruiters go through. It can be really disappointing when a candidate you really like doesn’t get the job, but you need to use the rejection of candidates as a learning experience and find someone who is even a better fit. As a sourcer, you’re able to stay relatively removed from the actual process as the amount of candidate interaction is minimal. Once you’re managing the process to completion, you’ll have to learn how to objectively balance the needs of the client and the wants of the candidate. Don’t be afraid to lean on the experience of those around you, and in time you’ll be able to navigate these hurdles with grace and ease.

Liz is the Owner/Principal Recruiter at Liz Bronson Consulting, specializing in teaching companies how to recruit with a more human-centric approach to finding talent. She and her team also augment company recruiting teams, finding them top business-side talent. 
 
Liz began her corporate career as an HR Generalist, and took those skills to recruiting, where her holistic approach to people management helped hiring managers build productive, cohesive teams. She spent 9 years at VMware predominantly focused on building out the product management and product marketing groups before helping companies such as SignalFx, Hortonworks, Greylock Partners and Evernote.
 
Outside of work, Liz is active in the Austin community, serving on the Board of Little Helping Hands- a non-profit dedicated to teaching young people the value of community service. She is often found with her family and 2 crazy dogs.

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