When it comes to business terms, it can be hard to pin down a definitive meaning everybody agrees upon. That’s because different providers often have different approaches to delivering their offerings. Direct sourcing is one of those terms. While there’s a major movement afoot in the talent acquisition industry to implement direct sourcing—and with good reason, since it’s super-targeted and highly efficient—there’s not total clarity or consensus on what direct sourcing actually is.
As the company formerly known as Genesys Talent, an early pioneer in direct sourcing, Opptly is here to explain exactly what we mean by direct sourcing, and why it has tremendous potential for transforming a company’s talent sourcing efforts, particularly for contingent workforce needs.
Direct sourcing, the Opptly way
At its most basic, direct sourcing is a two-sided marketplace that directly connects hiring companies with people seeking work. How direct sourcing happens may vary between in-house and outsourced programs, as well as across vendors. At Opptly, our aim is to use direct sourcing to bypass the impersonal intermediaries that can hamper a positive experience for both candidate and hiring company. There are two distinct ways we do this:
- Combine sophisticated Artificial Intelligence (AI) with expert human curation.
- Tailor the entire candidate experience to how today’s modern workers use technology.
Why are these Opptly’s key areas of focus (and differentiation)?
Let’s first dig into the strategic one-two punch of AI plus human curation. Mostly, it’s an approach to talent sourcing that lets each phase do what it does best.
Our advanced AI technology quickly processes vast amounts of data and delivers enormous sorting efficiency, skills matching and job recommendations. Once that initial distillation happens, our expert staff do what humans are really good at: think about context and nuance and assess candidates for important talents that may fall outside the fixed parameters required by tech tools.
Hiring companies then receive a finely tuned, carefully mined suite of candidates. This process saves time and budget, while optimizing positive outcomes in both the short term (smooth onboarding) and long term (ideal fit for both employer and worker).
Next, we want to explain why it’s so important to meet today’s modern workers where they are in relation to technology versus insisting they adapt their job searches to more traditional models.
It’s simple, really: they won’t.
And let’s be clear: this is not a matter of “millennials being millennials.”
There are good reasons why the gig economy and supporting apps evolved the way they did. Think Uber, Instacart, even telemedicine, and you’ll understand what we’re talking about. It’s a better, more connected way of doing business for everyone involved (except maybe the world’s technophobes). As with those modern marketplaces, direct sourcing is a natural evolution to a more modern, user-friendly approach. And that goes for both job seekers and talent seekers.
That’s not to say staffing companies and jobsites like Indeed and ZipRecruiter are going away—on the contrary, they absolutely have their place. We just know that companies that tap into direct sourcing are the ones that view access to top talent as a significant competitive advantage and will reap the biggest benefits from it.
What else can direct sourcing offer?
Picture a 30-year-old project manager—let’s call her Amanda. She has all the key certifications, solid experience, and great references. At this point in time, she’s less interested in finding a permanent position than in good-paying work she can do remotely at a company that values her contributions.
In Path A, Amanda will likely update her LinkedIn profile and sign up for job leads through Indeed, job boards and other online sources, of which only about 10% will hit the sweet spot for skills, experience and pay. She (and hundreds of others) will apply to those jobs and hear crickets. Barely more than a confirmation that her application was received.
She decides to take a more direct path with her search. She makes a list of her favorite brands and companies she could feel passionate about working for. Let’s name one of those Fantastic Industries, the global leader in all things fantastic. Amanda arrives at a career portal for the company and uploads her resume. Similar to Amanda’s experience with job boards, Amanda’s career portal approach has the same, disadvantageous outcome.
In Path B, Amanda is navigated to a direct sourcing solution via Opptly. This solution enables Amanda to connect directly with companies seeking her skills. The experience is user-friendly and plain in tone and approach. She receives autoreplies confirming receipt of her application and can see where and when her application is viewed throughout in the process. Additionally, Amanda has visibility to a broad collection of hiring companies. Her positive feelings for the company are reinforced and she feels excited and engaged in the hiring process.
Should You Get Started with Direct Sourcing?
The definitive answer is…maybe. Not all hiring needs lend themselves to direct sourcing. If you’re looking to hire in a specific area like Houston, then direct sourcing could give you a super-targeted suite of geographically desirable candidates. If you’re looking to hire in very remote locations that lack candidates, then perhaps not.
Use cases that allow the AI technology to tap into and learn from established content like job descriptions and profiles of previous successful candidates are ideal starting points. Here are some other scenarios that direct sourcing plays nicely with:
- Remote worker hiring
- Recurring skill sets
- High volume within a geography
- Bulk hiring
- Strategic exclusivity hiring
- Cyclical hiring
- Classroom-oriented hiring
- Hiring needs based on changes in business
Sound Like You? Talk to Us.
While some companies choose to build their own in-house direct sourcing program, many opt for the much faster and broader talent route: contracting with a direct sourcing partner like Opptly. If you’re ready to explore direct sourcing, we can answer your questions and walk you through the process. It’s also worth noting that Opptly integrates seamlessly with MSP process workflows and VMS technologies, and we’re happy to talk to those contacts directly.
Give us a shout.