6 Sourcing Tips from GetYourGuide’s First Internal Sourcer
Luisa joined the Recruiting team this year as our first internal Sourcer. On a daily basis, she sources candidates around the world, working to bring the best people to GetYourGuide. In addition to her own sourcing, she also supports recruiters and hiring teams in their sourcing efforts. In the time she has been with the team, the number of prospected hires has more than quadrupled. We sat down with Luisa to find out her tips for improving your team’s sourcing efforts.
A/B Test Your Pitches
When I joined GYG, one of my first projects was to create a library of all the prospecting messages (i.e. Inmails) being sent out by Recruiters. From there, I identified some key characteristics to test. We ran A/B tests on 1000 of our prospecting messages and learned that short, personal, to the point messages were most successful.
So, take a step back and look at what kinds of messages you’re sending out and run experiments to see how they can be improved. Based on our tests, I recommend sending out short, personal messages, but by running your own, you might be able to identify other key factors that improve your response rate.
Always Send a Follow-up
Given the candidates we’re looking for - senior-level with startup and tech experience - we’re reaching out to a much sought-after crowd. These candidates receive multiple messages a day and often don’t respond on the first try. One of my key learnings is to always send a follow-up.
Although prospects might not want to take the conversation further once they respond to the follow-up, their response opens the door and allows me to begin building a relationship. The first step is connecting on LinkedIn. I then set a reminder for myself and reach out again in 3-6 months.
With more experienced candidates, building a long-term relationship is key. This relationship ensures when they are ready for a change, they feel comfortable messaging you. I’ve also found that the more contact I have with a candidate, the more likely they are to reach out to me with someone else in their network who might be a fit.
Sourcing is a Game of Numbers
Sourcing is a game of numbers, and, for me, those numbers are 150, 4, and 1. My weekly goal, no matter what, is to send out 150 messages so I can land on my desired conversion rate. As opposed to spreading these 150 messages across all of my roles, I focus on only 4 roles per week and 1 role per day. Focusing on specific roles weekly allows me to gain a better understanding of the role, compare profiles, and refine my search string. I then reserve my 5th day to reply back to prospects, update my reports, and attend meetings.
The ideal numbers for you will be different based on the number of roles you’re sourcing for, your region, and even the name recognition of your company; but, it is still imperative to identify how many messages you need to send to build a strong pipeline, how many roles you can balance on a weekly basis, and how much sourcing time you dedicate to each of these roles.
Get in on the Front-End
As a Sourcer, my core task is to work with the Recruiter and hiring team to find great people and build a strong pipeline. The more knowledge I have, the better I can identify a great profile and the better pipeline I can build. So, I get involved right from the start. Our recruiting process begins with a kick-off meeting for the Recruiter and hiring teams, and I make sure to attend every one.
At these meetings, hiring managers discuss their ideal profile including superstar characteristics and tradeoffs they’re willing to make. In addition to a more nuanced understanding of the role, I also get tips from the entire hiring team on specific skills, previous experience, and companies to look for. After the meeting, I incorporate what I’ve learned into my sourcing strategy and am able to find great prospects who fit the team’s needs.
Join kick-off meetings or plan a meeting with the hiring team prior to setting your sourcing strategy to understand the role beyond the job description and craft a search string sure to return a great profile.
Collaborate, Calibrate, Convert
While some people might think sourcing means sitting alone all day plugged into my headphones, sourcing is all about collaboration and is really a team effort. My recruiters are my partners, helping me gain an understanding of the role and giving me feedback when a prospect isn’t the right fit. The hiring managers are also key, especially when it comes to sourcing for tech roles.
Recently, I was sourcing candidates for our data team, and I sat with the hiring managers for the two roles to go over a few things I didn’t understand. Not only were they able to answer my questions, but they also helped me improve my search string and showed me how to sort prospects into the different roles based on a few hints from their tech stack.
Calibrating your search based on feedback from hiring managers and recruiters helps increase efficiency, conversion, and ensures you are consistently sourcing for the right person for the team.
As I mentioned before, sourcing is a collaborative effort. Just as I rely on the hiring managers and recruiters to help me improve my sourcing, I also share my sourcing knowledge with the hiring teams to help build a culture where everyone is empowered to find great people to join GetYourGuide.
To that end, we implemented sourcing sessions. During these sessions, I meet with the hiring teams and we source through their network together. I sit side-by-side with them, show them how to craft a search, and provide guidance on their messages. In 2018, these sourcing sessions combined with the work of myself and the entire recruiting team has boosted our prospected hires by nearly 10 percent!
A good sourcer doesn’t just build a strong pipeline, but shares best practices and provides resources so others on the team can do the same.