Every experienced Internet Sourcer uses a general list of guidelines that they work successfully by. Like any profession, Internet Sourcers have a “Rules of the Road” that assists them in finding qualified candidates. I’ve listed ten rules, that I will break down into two separate articles. These rules are not necessarily in order of significance, since I find them all equally important in your Internet journey. If you have a rule that you think should be included, by all means email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Research Comes First ? Every great Sourcer should have an organized library of resources. Whether this comes in the form of organized bookmarks and favorites or a notebook, it is imperative to track your research. Sourcers also understand the necessity of tracking their research and search strings using research forms. My research form includes synonyms to keywords, a list of competitors and their URLs, as well as association sites and universities that offer the particular discipline among other things. I have a research folder in my favorites that include sub folders for associations, company profile information, company financial profile information, industry resource folders broken down by discipline as well as news resources and a variety of other links.
- Homepages Are Resumes – I can’t stress how important it is for Recruiters to think out of the box when it comes to Internet research. For instance, if I found the homepage of a candidate who listed their interests as java programming and has links to several java sites, do you think I can consider them for my possible java developer opening? Of course! The same goes for most homepages you run into. They don’t always have a full resume listing their experience etc. Sometimes you have to do a little more digging to form a lot more subtle of clues.
- Always Use the Advanced Search Function When Available – Since you are an advanced Sourcer, you should always use the advanced services when available on a search engine or other directory or look-up. Have prepared Boolean search strings ready for each type of advanced search in a search engine so you only need to cut and paste your position specifics. You should have a listing of industry-specific search strings which include x-raying and flip searching every URL of each industry competitor and having this in cut and paste form so you are not always reinventing your power search string.
- No Access, No Problem – A good Sourcer knows that just because you are not allowed access to a page, does not mean you can’t still get in. If you can’t get in the front door of the site, then back door the server by using the advanced function on a search engine. You can do this relatively easy by x-raying the server. X-ray allows you to ask a search engine for every web page on a server. Many times companies will have pages on their server that are not linked to any of their main pages. Search engines still index those pages so they may be able to pull them up for you. All you need to do is go to the advanced search function on Altavista and type in host:thesite.com AND the words you expect to find on your no access page. It never ceases to amaze me how often companies give all of the information on several of their key employees directly on their site. Do me a favor, for fun go to the advanced function of Altavista and type in host:*.com AND “employee directory”. Can you believe there are over 6,164 pages of companies who many times list their complete employee directory and title it such!
- Always Look at the URL – Too many times we click to a page that has some of what we want but not all and thus we hit our back button and continue on. A good Sourcer always reviews the url of the page to see if they can peel back each sub folder to find what else is on the site. Many times behind a resume page is a directory of other similar resumes or an additional page that explains a lot more about the candidate in who’s resume you are reviewing. Don’t miss out on this crucial information! Simply take off the last portion of the URL that occurs after the “/” sign and find these pages, which often contain a wealth of information. In fact, most of my searching involves peeling back from the search engine results to find the true nuggets of what I need!
Hopefully you enjoyed the first five of what I consider the top ten rules for successful Internet Sourcers. I encourage you to try some of these tips and tricks immediately. You will be amazed at the wealth of information the Internet truly provides! <*SPONSORMESSAGE*>