Companies cannot afford to sit back and wait for the right candidate to knock on their doors. Good talent is looking for worthwhile opportunities, and it is the recruiter’s responsibility to go the extra mile to attract these candidates. That is why research professionals within an executive search team are so important. It is a proactive way to identify possible candidates –who may be actively looking for a job or passively considering opportunities that come their way – and sell your clients potential position(s) to them. Last month, the team of IESF Switzerland – Ganci Partners – hosted an online IESF Academy Masterclass – ‘The importance of Searching & Sourcing’ – for all executive search partners. With over 30 participants joining from all over the world, they shared the development of their search department and strategy in Switzerland. A country where 99% of all the executive search projects are completed with searched candidates. In this article, founder and managing director Vincenzo Ganci explains how and why.
“There is a common saying in HR which goes like All recruiters are sourcing agents, but all sourcing agents are not recruiters, which means that both recruitment and sourcing are essentially two different practices. Within Ganci Partners we work with 25 professionals on executive search projects. On the one hand the consultant team, and on the other hand the research team. We work according to a hybrid model: for each assignment a team of a consultant and a researcher is created that work together on that specific task. This increases the control and visibility of the researchers, the commitment to the client/assignment and flexibility. We also worked on job enrichment by assigning special extra responsibilities to our researcher’s profile, like internal recruitment, onboarding and internal projects. Good researchers are a key strategic aspect of executive recruitment, so we redesigned our internal recruitment process to attract more and better researchers for our firm.”
“We established a sourcing policy, to structure our searching and sourcing process. The process of sourcing for candidates involves searching for, identifying, and engaging with talent, which can include activities such as searching our own database, resume databases, LinkedIn, Google, and various social media platforms for relevant keywords. But sourcing is not just only about search strings – sourcing is an interactive process. It is all about understanding the career preferences and the development and career plan of an individual. Our researchers need to have a good understanding about the job, the capabilities required, and the capabilities that can be obtained in certain earlier positions. For every search we aim to screen around 600 – 800 profiles, then do a closer evaluation of around 150 profiles, which leads to presenting 60 – 80 profiles to the consultant. After consulting we approach around 50 – 80 profiles. This leads to around 30 pre-calls, 10 face to face interviews and the introduction of around 5 candidates with interviews to the client.”
People who are not actively looking for a job are still viable candidates. According to LinkedIn, 90 percent of people are open to hearing about new job opportunities. “By finding the right would-be employees through sourcing we are better able to hire them when they are job hunting or open for an interesting possibility. Sourcing candidates allows us to pre-screen people before making a first contact. We are proactive in seeking out talent based on the qualifications the clients need, so the hiring process becomes easier. Sourcing creates a better-quality pipeline, better quality hires, making it less likely that we must start the process all over again because our client onboarded someone who really wasn’t a good fit. At Ganci Partners we are really focusing on diversity. With sourcing, we specifically look for qualified candidates within specific demographics which allows us to have a funnel made up of talent from underrepresented backgrounds. Sourcing talent is an intelligent, and cognitively challenging process of selecting a combination of words and phrases, analyzing the results returned, making changes to the query based on observed relevance, and repeating the process until an acceptable quantity of highly qualified and matched candidates are identified. Looking at the future of our business: searching and sourcing is the most agile and strategic part of our service.”