Sourcing or Talent Pooling? Recruiter – what do you choose?

Answering the title question we would like to say “it depends” because as it happens in life “one’s point of view depends on the point where one sits”. In the following article, sourcing will be contrasted with talent pooling to verify the effectiveness of both methods. How do they differ? Do they come together at any stage of the recruitment process? You can find more information in the article.

Sourcing & Talent Pooling – what they are

Everything has its beginning in theory, so let’s start with the definitions of both terms to understand their meaning:

Sourcing – actively reaching out to passive candidates (those not actively looking for a job) using online portals and available information on the web. The most popular for this method are LinkedIn and direct message on Facebook, but there are also many non-standard ways in sourcing that are effective.

Talent Pooling – recommending Candidates by recruiters for their projects or for other processes. This is the concept of mutual sharing of Candidates by recruiters, excluding sourcing, direct search and advertisements. Candidates recommended by the recruiter and proven in other projects significantly reduce the process time. Talent pooling is relationship-based recruitment.

Looking at recruitment from a bird’s eye view, it is sourcing that undoubtedly builds our base in the beginning of our recruitment efforts – we create networking. However, after some time and several projects worked through, we have acquired valuable contacts that we can actively engage in ongoing recruitment. After years of work, we have a sizable overview of valuable contacts. These activities are the basis of talent pooling.

Sourcing VS Talent Pooling

Below is a summary comparing the two approaches to recruitment efforts:

SourcingTalent Pooling
Candidate DatabaseBuilt for the project.Built over a period of work.
TimeRequires preparing a sourcing strategy and waiting for Candidates’ responses. It requires more time investment.We spend time contacting candidates we know, presenting a specific offer. Reduced time for recruitment.
QualityWe need to conduct a recruitment interview, which is just to get to know the Candidate and his preferences.We know the Candidate from other recruitment processes. We refine the information we have as required.
RelationThere is not always time to maintain relationships.One of the key elements – the relationship is a method of operation.

These two ways of sourcing candidates for recruitment have a key difference in the end result: time, which is much more beneficial for talent pooling. Time is followed by quality. This means effectively closed recruitment processes and greater Candidate satisfaction, and thus financial gratification for the recruiter for closing the recruitment.

Study: Talent pooling in recruitment

At Talent Place, we investigated the extent to which Polish recruiters use assets built over the years.
We conducted the first research on talent pooling in Poland. It shows that:

38.1% of recruiters believe that the candidates on the recommendation are the source of the most valuable candidates.

Every third respondent (31%) has access to their own database/network of candidates exceeding 5000 people, a similar percentage (28%) estimates that the size of this database reaches 1001-5000 people. Among the biggest advantages of building their own database/network of candidates, recruiters see time savings in searching for candidates (47%) and not starting the recruitment process from scratch (42%). The issue of ease of contact with candidates from the base (35%) is also raised.

The biggest barriers to building such a database/network include the lack of qualitative content to attract and maintain relations with the candidate database (59%) and the lack of time to build the database itself (52%). Recruiters most often communicate with candidates using Social Media (72.6%) or individually (58.6%) via phone, e-mail, meeting.

Talent pooling is particularly important for more demanding roles, for example in recruitment for senior positions. Then the announcements published on job boards and sourcing become time-consuming and inefficient, and a good candidate with a referral may turn out to be worth the weight of gold.

Full pooling talent report available for download HERE.

Which method to choose?

We live in a world of “smart solutions” designed to streamline operations, speed up processes and improve quality. This trend is also present in the recruitment field. It corresponds to the dynamic changes that have been taking place for several years and the new expectations of the market.

Without sourcing, we will not build networking, that is, we will not expand the network of contacts we already have. The two concepts intertwine. Sourcing is the beginning of talent pooling. However, talent pooling works more broadly – we build a relationship not only with the Candidate, but with other recruiters. We create a network of mutual contacts by recommending each other’s projects and people who may be potentially interested in them.

Recruiter, which approach will you choose when starting your next recruitment process?

Monika Filus

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