Let’s talk turkey…this is what a Sourcer is thankful for…

Kelly Dingee Kelly Dingee, Social Media and Talent, Web/Tech

I can’t speak for everyone…but this sourcer is thankful for several things.  I’ve been working in the industry for a while now, and didn’t realize until I articulated it in this recent webinar, but more than half of my career has been in corporate HR.  The last 15 months has been about taking on a new view of the world from the perspective of retained search and I have to say I’m enjoying myself.  I’ve gained a new respect for the industry and for the sites and services that make my job possible and enjoyable.

So who’s on this list?

LinkedIn – at times I’m tired of talking about LinkedIn, but let me say this: I’m making hires from LinkedIn.  I use the internal search feature, have an upgraded account, but I still “XRay” the site (i.e. use site:) on a regular basis to make sure I get a complete view of the possible candidate pool.  I inmail.  I join groups.  This past year 2 things, I’ve found?  Unpersonalized inmails fall on deaf ears. Take a minute and personalize. And if you are on Twitter, and using it for business, connect it to your LinkedIn account.  Your level of engagement with your network will increase.

* – the asterisk – the wildcard – is used by me daily while on Google.  Particularly if I’m using the site: command on LinkedIn’s domain.

GooglePlus – It’s quickly becoming a standard “second tier” search site for me.  Will it rival LinkedIn? Facebook? We’ll see.  But I’m now pulling candidates out of it on every search.  And I’ve vowed to spend more time on it in the next year than on Facebook.

Extraction tools – I’m just one woman – so to have tools that will scour my results, pull them down into sortable worksheets for review.  There’s plenty on the market to choose from and they do make sourcing life move at warp speed.

Alternative Search Engines – ironic that I google for alternative search engines, but I do.  I’ve tried Blekko and DuckDuckGo.  The one I’m playing with now? DevilFinder.  How can you resist a site that says “Take Me To Hell”? That’s usually where I am when I’ve decided to go the Alternative Search Engine route.

Indeed’s Resume Database – I know, I know.  All my corporate HR friends have told me to enjoy “free” while I can because its going to be fee by Q1 2012.  Good for Indeed.  I still show this site to job seeking friends because of its ability to connect to your LinkedIn network and see “who you know” in the company before applying and the quality of candidates I’m finding in the resume database plus the fact.

#RLTM – A couple of years ago, I met the people behind the Realtime Report (formerly known as TWTRCON) and it’s been nothing but beneficial from a knowledge perspective.  I am not a social media marketing guru, but it’s great to have met people who are.  Especially when you continually see great content come out of their site and their speakers.  If I wasn’t still following @pistachio, who I saw speak at my first TWTRCON, I wouldn’t have grabbed this great and informative paper on creating a Google+ Page for my company.

Outlook’s Signature Templates – I’ve forgotten who suggested this to me, but this year I created templates for those questions we always get as sourcing professionals.  Even just simple acknowledgement emails, because jobseekers appreciate acknowledgement and it takes me 2 minutes to customize, click and send.

Summify & Flipboard – what can I say, time is precious.  I like Summify because it lets me see what my network is reading and tweeting.  Flipboard? To go into my reader and additional sites that my network is not reading.

Online Resources for Sourcers – when you work from home as a sourcer, you have to do what you can to create community and stay on your game.  I have a few places I go whenever I need a jumpstart. Sometimes, just listening to other sourcers and their issues can help me figure out a next step in a search when I feel like I’ve exhausted all practical mediums.  Glen Cathey’s tweets and his blog should be something you visit, SourceCon should be dropping you their weekly updates, joining the Boolean String group on LinkedIn is a must and grabbing the AIRS monthly sourcing report.  A for example? Glen Cathey recently tweeted a search string he was using on Bing.  The important component for me? “Location Washington” It shortened the characters I was including and brought back incredibly clean results.

The Ladders – did you just choke on your coffee? Yes, really, I am thankful for The Ladders. The event they hosted in early January of 2011 really forced me to look at how I was working and was I delivering the best candidate experience.  That was incredibly eye opening and has resulted in continued conversations with people like Gerry Crispin that has probably resulted in a bit more work for me (i.e. answering all candidate emails, even those just applying, or those saying “thank you no thank you”).

And I am incredibly thankful for my team at work.  Particularly the crew that works with me in research. We fall down a few rabbit holes and sometimes the work is not what you think it will be, but the “get it done” attitude of the group keeps me motivated on the toughest searches.  That is a blessing.