Searching for Candidates? Consider making LinkedIn a Plan B

Kelly Dingee Kelly Dingee, Sourcing

This summer I’ve been reconsidering how I find candidates.  I’ve paid to play on LinkedIn, and whenever I invest valuable recruiting dollars like that, I make sure we get our money’s worth, and we have, without question.  I don’t know if it was summer blahs or weariness of seeing the same profiles over and over again, but at some point I decided to use LinkedIn as my Plan B.

Don’t get me wrong—if I need to generate names quickly to complement what I’ve found in our ATS, (and let me tell you – iCIMs is doing a great job of making our ATS what we want it to be!) I am visiting LinkedIn.  But, I’m not relying as heavily on it as I did say two or three years ago.

So if LI is in my Plan B, what’s part of my Plan A? Take a look:

  • Looking for Lists, Rosters, Directories, ListServs, Conversations, Presentations, Presenters, Speakers and so on.
  • Poring through groups NOT on LinkedIn to generate candidates.
  • Digging for bios and profiles without using bio or profile or resume in the search string.  Instead I’m focusing on the probable job titles and potential skills or location of candidates.
  • Reviewing the first pass of candidates from similar searches and seeing who can be revisited for our new search.
  • Pulling candidates that we’ve really liked and hired, or maybe we’ve really liked and they’ve declined and peer searching their name (peer searching is an ancient sourcing technique—type the candidate’s name in the search box and off you go).
  • When I find one candidate at an organization with the right experience I’m seeking? I rip down everyone else just like him within that organization (and grab his boss too for good measure).

Does it sound tedious? It’s not. It’s actually turned out to be quite productive and, surprise, yields people that don’t have LinkedIn profiles, or if they do have them, they’re either skeletal or not current. So the profiles don’t have the keywords I’m seeking.  And these tactics are working not only for our opportunities in DC, but also for my searches in San Francisco and New York City.

Have you changed up your sourcing plan recently? Care to share? Hit us in the comments with your new Plan A.