Talent Sourcing Guide & Best Practices

Written by

Lisa Gonzalez

· Last updated on

May 10, 2023

Talent sourcing is at the beginning, middle, and end stages of the recruitment process. It’s when a company has identified a need for talent within a team, and is actively seeking a candidate with specific skills and experience. 

SHRM published a report in 2019 entitled The Global Skills Shortage. It claimed that 75% of HR professionals thought there was a lack of skills among applicants. This highlights the need for businesses to implement strong talent sourcing strategies into their recruitment processes.

And Jobspage can help with this by connecting companies with top talent. We have a range of tools and resources - like customizable job forms and Careers pages - so you can find a candidate with the right skills for the job.

But first, here is your guide to talent sourcing. 

What is Talent Sourcing?

Talent sourcing is the process of finding someone with specific skills and experience to take on a role within your company. It can involve researching, networking, and collaborating with potential candidates.Talent sourcing can also be part of a broader strategy that involves consistently getting high-quality applicants.

The Process of talent sourcing

Talent sourcing is not a lone task. It is a process with many steps. We’ll have a look at each step next: 

1. Create the Position

Your job position description will specify the hard and soft skills you expect a candidate to possess. While it’s always more convenient if your candidate has these skills already, training them during their onboarding phase is also an option. The job description must also outline what the new candidate’s duties will be. 

2. Collaborating with the Hiring Manager

Collaborate with your hiring manager to clarify what you are looking for in a candidate. Share your job description with them, along with a detailed candidate identity. Keep the communication open throughout the whole process. 

3. Preparing the Job Posting

Make your job posting descriptive and enticing to attract high-quality applicants. Specify the skills and experience you are looking for, along with any questions you’d like them to answer with their application. For example, you can ask what makes them a good candidate for the role or what their salary expectations are. These can help weed out unsuitable candidates early on in the process. 

If you’re using an application tracking software like Jobspage, you need to be specific with your skills. This helps algorithms match the right candidates to your job. 

The example below from Jobspage includes all the details you need for a data analyst job posting. 

4. Sourcing Your Candidates

While networking is a great option for finding your ideal candidates, sourcing in general becomes much easier when you use an ATS. Customer Relationship Management systems can also simplify the process. These two types of software help you to track, manage, and organize your recruitment efforts. Use past data to identify which platforms would be the best ones to look for candidates that match the required skill set. 

5. Interviewing and Assessing

Now you’ve found a good number of skilled candidates, you can begin interviewing and assessing. This process can be a little overwhelming because there is often a lot to sift through. Managers are often brought in at this point to oversee the decision and give their input. Use your ATS and a scoring system, and work together to narrow down your list of potential hires. 

6. Hiring and Onboarding For New Hires

A strong onboarding strategy is an essential aspect of recruitment. According to Zippia, a successful onboarding process increases productivity by an impressive 70%. Better still, it boosts employee retention by 82%. You must support your new employee by providing the necessary tools and information to start out on their journey with you. 

Consider buddying them up with someone in their department. This person can be their valuable source of information in those first few weeks. They can also help them feel more comfortable around their new colleagues. 

Talent Sourcing Best Practices

When it comes to talent sourcing, it’s not enough to simply follow the steps. There are lots of things you can do to optimize the process. Here are seven talent sourcing best practices:

Identify Growth Prospects

Use your company’s plans for growth to craft effective recruitment strategies. Tailor job descriptions and job roles to your company’s growth plans. This means successfully identifying candidates that can scale with your company. For example, if you hire someone who is very motivated, they’ll probably appreciate and take up any skill development opportunities you present when it comes to growing your business. 

Keep a Watchlist

You don’t have to have a job opening to keep watch of ideal employees. Keeping a watch list of potential employees is a top tip for recruitment teams and hiring managers. This can be even more handy for niche roles like software engineers or multilingual candidates. 

This step is about anticipating potential future company needs. For example, even though you have no immediate plans to build a company app, you can still save a talented app developer’s details if you come into contact with them. 

Having a list of talented potential hires will save you time in the long run. Store and organize your potential future hires to refer back to them when the need arises. 

Look at Past Candidates

When several candidates make it to the final round of recruitment, you have to make that difficult decision about who to pick. When you’ve chosen which candidate you’re offering the job to, keep the details of the others on file. Then, when you need to hire someone new, you can look through these past potential candidates and reach out to those you think would be a good fit. 

Use Various Platforms

These can help you develop your brand image, as well as sourcing talented candidates. Various platforms come complete with various tools that talent sourcers can use to identify people with specific skills and experience. 

Here are some ways different platforms can help you streamline your efforts:

  • LinkedIn - The most obvious social networking platform for sourcing talent. LinkedIn is all about networking with other professionals. Users post information like skills, qualifications, and career accomplishments.
  • Indeed - This is one of the most popular job boards. There are millions of resumes on there, waiting to be talent-spotted.
  • Facebook - All Facebook users have the potential to be candidates. Look through Facebook groups and profiles to narrow your search. 
  • Twitter - This has a variety of functions that recruiters can use for talent sourcing like Chat and Search.
  • Meetup - Not as well-known as the other examples but Meetup helps to connect people with common interests. 

Hire Internally

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Hiring internally costs less money than hiring someone new. This method of talent sourcing also benefits from the candidate already being familiar with many of your company processes. Additionally, existing employees may already be committed to your company. If this is the case, they are more likely to stick around, particularly if given the opportunity to upskill and develop their career. 

To make hiring internally work, analyze the skills within your existing team. Identify employees that have the potential to develop their skills further with the right training. 

Make Your Job Posting Stand Out

Create a job posting that demands to be read. Make it stand out with a conversational - yet professional  - tone and ensure it’s relevant to your target candidates. Explain what you expect from your new hire and what they’ll receive in return. 

Here are some tips to composing your job postings:

  • Honesty is the best policy - Be transparent with all the details, including compensation. 
  • Be realistic - You won’t necessarily find someone within your budget that perfectly matches your needs. Be realistic about your expectations and be prepared to adapt. 
  • Highlight the benefits - Even if your pay doesn’t quite cut it, highlight the other benefits of working with you. A relaxed and friendly environment, for example, free coffee all day, or hybrid working. 
  • Simple to apply - Be approachable and make applying an easy process. You could include your email address for candidates to reach out if they have any questions before applying.

Below is an example of a good job posting. You will see that it includes clear, crisp images, detailed job information, as well as confirmation that the company will take care of the new hire. 

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Strengthen Your Employer Brand

When it comes to talent sourcing, having a strong employer brand will serve you well. The application process is a two-way street. Candidates are assessing your company as much as you’re assessing them. Very often, they want to ensure they work for a company with values that align with theirs. 

Furthermore, with the number of employer review websites online, such as Glassdoor and Indeed, employer reputation will be a big deciding factor for applicants. 

Your employer brand should define and incorporate all of the following:

  • Your business values and principles - These can be naturally incorporated into your company's content, as well as your job posting. 
  • How well (or not) you treat your staff.
  • Why working with you is better than working with your competitors. 
  • Your relationship with your current employees.

Seek out reviews of your company. If, for example, you have some bad reviews on Indeed, consider the reasons given and work on improving these things. Chances are, negative reviews will deter highly-skilled candidates. So, you need to show that you have righted any potential wrongs mentioned in the reviews. 

You can also ask for candidate feedback at different stages of the hiring process. For example, after an interview or if an applicant drops out of their own accord. 


Talent sourcing is a complicated business and a big responsibility. Use all the resources available to you, such as social media and past data, and plan future hires strategically. Work on your brand’s reputation and present your company as a positive, encouraging, and innovative one that cares about its employees and their development. 

To navigate the complex world of talent sourcing, use an ATS to simplify and streamline your process. Create your Jobspage Careers Page today for free. 

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