1 Recruiting-Sourcing Stone for 2 Birds?

You get what you pay for.  You sometimes get less, but you never get more. — Something I heard a long, long time ago, somewhere

One stone for two birds?

I don’t think so.

I know all you hiring managers and staffing officials out there would like your recruiters to be expert sourcers and your sourcers to be expert recruiters.

I know you all would like to kill two birds with one stone, but I can tell you right now, right here, it’s not going to happen.

It’s not going to happen because the two types of personality types are generally not found (in one person) in an organization.

They’re found outside organizations in the form of third party recruiters who have been cutting this mustard for years.

Now that we’ve given this brave and heroic special set the recognition and laurel crown they so richly deserve, let me tell you why you’re not likely to find these people inside your organization.

You refuse to pay them what they deserve to make.

Added to that handicap even if you would pay them close to, at (or above) what they can make on their own they’d likely not accept your offer because birds of this rare feather are usually solo practitioners — far too independent to cage themselves within the gilded cage of any organization.

Truth be told, they probably wouldn’t pass muster with your staffing requirements anyway, so let’s not spend any more of your valuable time yakkin’ away about them.

Let’s get back to the real reason for this article.

You’re setting yourself up for failure if you believe the current pundits that sourcers can be recruiters and recruiters can be sourcers.

Oh, I said that last part already, didn’t I?

Yes, but it bears repeating and more needs to be said.

There are a flurry of products coming at you right now that promise more than they can (really) deliver.

Most of your recruiters don’t really want to source and most of your sourcers don’t really want to recruit.

Trust me, I’ve thought long and hard on this one.

Each skill set requires vastly different personality types.

That’s the bottom line.

“Oh, but there’s LinkedIn,” you’re thinking to yourself.

LinkedIn isn’t sourcing; it’s resume farming — the same product the job boards have been offering for years.

As time goes on and the product continues to sour — oh, excuse me, I mean age — it will become more and more apparent exactly what it is.

Someday LinkedIn will be for sale, just like Monster, probably far below its highs.

There’ll be some bright new shiny object take its place.

The shine wears off everything.

Recruiters (as well as some sourcers) are more than willing to turn to and use any product that offers a “list of names” but it’s not a list of names you need in most instances.

What’s needed is a faculty for sourcing that delivers unique candidates in the shortest amount of time.

Unique candidates translate into those who are not easy, or are impossible to find online, and are not polluted by overexposure.

It usually takes a sourcer to do that. Most recruiters just plain don’t have the time to do it.

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I say it again: most don’t want to do it.

Most aren’t emotionally equipped to do it — they see it as something tedious at best.

Most see their time better spent doing things they enjoy – like engaging potential candidates delivered by their team-member sourcers.

Here’s another hardball.

Most sourcers don’t want to recruit.

Most aren’t emotionally equipped, either to do it.

It’s just not something they enjoy.

“Talking to people?  Get outta’ here,” is what runs through most of their heads when the director of the staffing department decides it’s time to tighten up the britch belts and squeeze more out of less.

That’s not the answer.

You’re barking up the wrong tree.

Your sourcers don’t want to recruit and your recruiters don’t want to source.

It takes two and as far as I can see down the road it’s going to continue to take two.

The lesson here: If you’re running a staffing department, don’t get it into your head that one person can do both functions.

It’s rare and the person that can do both is making a couple hundred thousand dollars (plus) a year.

Are you paying your recruiters that?

Are you paying your sourcers that?

If not, it’s not too likely either one is going to morph into the other.

This article was inspired by this.

photo from BigStock

Maureen Sharib has been a “Socratic sourcer” her entire sourcing career; from the moment she first picked up the faxed list of Silicon Valley high-tech companies that was her target list to “phone source” in 1996 to today she has instinctively followed this method of investigative sourcing using (mostly) the telephone.  She is a proponent of sourcing as a synonym for success and envisions the craft moving away from a dangerously drudgery-paced life-form existence to an exciting investigative/competitive place within organizations where practitioners co-exist within a framework of market research, human resources, and C-level future planning. She owns the phone sourcing and competitive intelligence firm TechTrak.com, Inc. You can contact her at Maureen at techtrak.com or call her at (513) 646-7306.  If she’s not on the phone she’ll pick up!