Editor’s note: This post was originally published in 2011. Due to the timeless nature of the content, we wanted to share it with you again today.
I firmly believe that candidate identification is the most critical step in the talent acquisition/recruiting life cycle – you can’t build a relationship with, receive a referral from, network with, or hire someone you haven’t found in the first place.
From the very beginning of my recruiting career, I’ve leveraged technology for talent identification. I’ve learned that searching databases, the Internet, and social media offers intrinsic advantages over other methods of candidate sourcing, and I’ve compiled a list of what I believe are the top 10 best practices for searching for candidates.
So whether you’re searching LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Monster, your ATS/CRM, or you’re Googling for candidate leads on the Internet – following and integrating these search best practices into your candidate sourcing routine can dramatically increase your ability to more quickly find more of the right people.
In no particular order:
#1: Think Before You Search
“Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four hours sharpening the axe.” – Abraham Lincoln
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That’s become one of my favorite quotes to use when stressing the importance of thinking before throwing some keywords together and hitting “search.”
Too many sourcers and recruiters are unknowingly picking up dull axes and begin taking swings. I’m not sure if you’ve ever tried chopping down a tree with a dull axe, but it’s neither efficient nor effective, and it requires considerably more effort than necessary. If you just take the time to think, develop some semblance of a search strategy, and experiment with various searches (sharpen your axe!) – you can get to more relevant results more quickly.