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4 Communities for Sourcing Technical Talent – Technical Recruiting Learning Series #6

Written By Jessica Miller-Merrell | January 12, 2015

Sourcing is a term used to describe recruiters whose role is researching, searching for qualified job seekers either by phone, in person or online. Phone sourcing is one of the oldest and most traditional sourcing methods where recruiters call into organizations. They spend their time researching a company by phone building phone trees and company organizational charts in order to locate passive candidates by phone. Online sourcing, on the other hand is a process of searching for qualified candidates who are likely passive talent online.

Sixty-four percent of best in class companies list sourcing as their most important talent acquisition pressure. Talent acquisition teams are looking for creative ways to source and find talent, particularly technical candidates because the competition is so fierce and the organizational need is to great.
The online sourcing market is a vast one with the average American having at least two social media profiles. Online sourcing is more than just searching social networks. There are great online communities, forums and groups you can use to find any type of candidate. However, these four communities are focused on internet sourcing for candidates to fill those technical job openings you have at your company.

Technical recruiters can source and search online communities using traditional search methods or by building Boolean search strings. These strings provide a powerful way to cut across an entire website, social network and community quickly for specific skills, keywords and locations.


This site is a great resource to attend live in person events and engage and source your candidates directly. Meetup’s platform offers simple search options. You can search communities without being a member and source potential candidate names by group. I recommend cross referencing and sourcing by Twitter search using the live event hashtag allowing you for more robust candidate research regarding the topics that have their attention.


Quora offers keyword search where you can locate discussion threads. Community members are passionate about sharing and connecting.  Three comments on different threads today and I already have 5 new LinkedIn profile views. Unfortunate downside is the inability to easily search for specific profiles, but once you locate a profile, it’s easy to locate their basic contact information online.


Eventbrite like Meetup can be used to monitor event hashtags. If the event organizer displays the registration list, you can easily pull the list and import into an excel spreadsheet to begin researching your list of potential candidates.


. Sourcing by app is another one of my favorite ways to research and find talent by hashtag, topic or location. Source on Instagram using the “Explore” option. Enter in a hashtag of interest like #hackathon or other event specific hashtags so that you can search in real time. Instagram makes it extremely difficult to search by location. Tools like Gramfeed allow you to search on Instagram from your desktop.

Like any type of Internet research, sourcing is extremely time consuming. It is easy to get sucked into the online world and the land of zero productivity. Planning your sourcing time, sites in which to search, and setting aside specific goals increases the likelihood of success in finding the best hidden technical talent for your company.

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