Looking For a Sourcer? Consider a Skiptracer

Mar 18, 2014
library research - freeHiring a good sourcer is difficult. Identifying potential new sourcers who do not have experience in recruiting, but have the skills to do the job, is even more difficult. If you’re trying to build a team of sourcers, consider targeting these professional backgrounds:

Skiptracers — Skiptracers are experts at finding people. They usually work for debt collectors or bail bonds companies who are trying to track down individuals who owe money. Per Wikipedia, skiptracing,

is performed by collecting as much information as possible about the subject. The information is then analyzed, reduced, and verified. Sometimes the subjects’ current whereabouts are in the data, but are obfuscated by the sheer amount of information or disinformation. Often, the job becomes more than mere research since one must often employ methods of social engineering, which involves calling or visiting former neighbors, or other known contacts, to ask about the subject …

Librarians —  Today’s library and information specialists are trained to manage and search databases. A recent graduate from a library science program knows how Internet databases are structured and has a deep understanding of how to find and organize information. In fact, one of the goals of the masters of library and information science program at the University of North Texas is to educate students about “the design and implementation of conceptual and technological systems and services to facilitate the discovery, identification, selection, acquisition, organization and description, storage and retrieval, preservation, dissemination, management, and use of recordable information and knowledge in any format for effective access.” That sounds like a great sourcer to me.

Coders — Coders understand how the Internet works. They are able to look at a website and determine how it is structured. They can typically create tools to take advantage of a website’s vulnerabilities (legally of course) and can use APIs to access new information.

For an example of how a sourcer with coding skills can access more information on the web than other sourcers, read how Matt Ferree can find almost any Gituhub user’s email address, and how Jan Bernhart figured out how to see third-degree profiles on LinkedIn for free (shortly after we made that video, LinkedIn fixed this vulnerability). As an added bonus for those of you recruiting technology candidates, coders come with “street cred” because they have a deeper understanding of technology.

In your experience, what other career fields make for an easy transition into a sourcing role?

Image: jscreationzs /
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