Why is Sourcing in Recruitment the same thing as SEO? How do you hire a perfect Recruitment Sourcer?
In his guest Blog post on HR Tech Europe Ivan Stojanovic, founder of Irish recruiter, answers these questions:
“Whenever I say that Talent Sourcing and SEO are exactly the same thing, I get the glaring looks. Confusion and disbelief.
Why is Sourcing in Recruitment the same thing as SEO?
Both Talent Sourcing and Search Engine Optimization (SEO) are based on the search engine algorithm. The only difference is the perspective.
In SEO you are trying to make your web site and its content on easy to find. In Talent Sourcing you are looking for the content that is not easy to find at all.
Here is how it looks in a real life. Put any job title in Google search. I will take “Java Developer” for example.
The results in Google are the Java Developers jobs. Not a single Java developer. Now why is that? The job boards have been doing the SEO for so many years, and the most important part of the SEO that makes them rank above the potential candidates are inbound links – the links for other web sites to the job board. Google sees a lot of sites linking to the job boards, and no one linking to someone’s CV online, so CVs have no chance to rank high in the search results.
If you are doing SEO, the higher you position the web site, the better. If you are sourcing, you will be getting rid of the “job” in the search results to try to get to CVs published online. So how do you get rid of the jobs? You will start with removing the results with words like “Jobs” with a Boolean search string like:
Depending on what the job title you used and what your local Google results are, you will tweak the search string to give you results that you want to see – the list of the CVs or resumes that fit the candidate profile you are sourcing for.
As a Sourcer you will usually write a specific search for the largest online CV database, dressed up in a social networking site:
site:linkedin.com/pub/ OR site:linkedin.com/in (“Java Developer” OR “J2EE Developer” OR “software engineer” ) (“lead” OR “lead developer”) (HTML5 CSS JSON Agile OR Scrum) (Minneapolis OR Chicago)
The other most common approach is to write a search query that will look for the word CV or a resume in the search results, and target the file type like Microsoft Word (.dox & .docx).
The Sourcer is searching for the documents that are hard to find, and the SEO Consultant makes the documents (web sites) easy to find so they show at the top of Google search results.
The skills required for both the Sourcer and the SEO expert are the same. It’s in-depth understanding of the Google search engine algorithm. Anyone who has a deep understanding on how Google works, will make a great SEO expert and a great Sourcer. SEO has been around for a few years longer than the idea of the internet sourcing in recruitment. SEO became important in recruitment with the early job boards and the need to place high in job search results. Sourcing really started with the acceptance of the social internet where everyone is the author. Blogs and social networks become the first sites that one could source from easily.
How do you hire a perfect Recruitment Sourcer?
You should source for someone who is good with SEO. Only the very best of SEO experts will make a good career of it. Only one web site can be top ranking and only the first search results page really counts. This means that there are a lot of very good SEO guys around, who are not making it to the very top. Those are your perfect Sourcers, whether they are aware of it or not!?”