Three Stages Of Internet Talent Sourcing

A lot of people ask me about managing my sourcing activity online. It can be so easy to get distracted when you are working on the Internet, especially when Social Media is involved.

I find it helps to have a somewhat systematic approach to my day-to-day sourcing in order to keep it manageable and relevant.

I break it into three phases;



It is important to map out your talent landscape before you go out looking for anybody. You might want to map information about;

  • Target companies
  • Events
  • News Sites
  • Social Media
  • Much more…


This is the fun part! Using the information that you gathered while mapping out where your talent might be found you can start some systematic searching. The people you identify through searching will then help you add to your mapping and give you more to explore later.


So that you don’t have to constantly repeat the search phase, use monitoring tools to bring any new results directly to you. You could;

  • sign up for email newsletters
  • use Google Alerts to have new search results sent straight to your inbox or RSS reader
  • subscribe to blogs
  • use social search sites like Social Mention or IceRocket to get alerts just from Social Network sites
  • follow people and companies on various social media sites.

If you too suffer from email overload, you might want to consider setting up an RSS reader. I use Google Reader. An RSS reader allows you to subscribe to feeds (news, blogs, google alerts) and have all that information brought into one place.

Then… Begin again.

Each phase above can inform the one before. As you search you will continually be presented with more information to add to your mapping. The information that you get through monitoring will also inform you mapping. Your monitoring may not continue to be relevant – you may need to go back and adjust saved searches and cancel subscriptions that do not yield helpful insights.

I talked in more detail about these three phases of Internet Sourcing in my Beyond The CV presentation at the Social Media In Recruitment conference on 7th April 2011.

How do you search systematically?