How Measuring The Quality Of Candidate Sourcing Channel Saves Money

Companies use multiple candidate sourcing channels for sourcing resumes such as job boards, external recruitment agencies, employee referrals, company career page, campus hiring, etc. They also invest in various innovative and modern hiring strategies such as employer branding, hackathons, social good for attracting top talent. Bigger the company more they spend on various candidate sourcing channels. However, often they ignore is the recruiting source quality. In other words, companies do not measure which resume sourcing channel is working best for what kind of job; where they get the top talent from.

Companies spend extensively on most recruiting channels in anticipation of closing the job position faster. The general belief is, more the resumes faster they can close job positions. However, that’s not true. If companies can track the resume source quality they could spend wisely on candidate sourcing and save a huge amount of money.

How Companies Spend On Sourcing Resume 

Below are some of the most common recruiting channels that companies spend money on.

A. Posting Job On Job Sites

Top job boards in respective geographies charge high prices for a job posting. These job boards have the highest volume of candidates visiting their site in search of jobs. And hence, you normally see a large number of job applications coming from leading job boards.

On average a top job board would charge you around $250-300 per month for each job posting. If we look at the average number of days required to close a job position, companies need to post most jobs for more than a month. Also, often companies go with more than one job board.

B. Recruitment Agencies

Most companies outsource sourcing resumes to recruitment agencies. A recruitment agency charges you anywhere from 10% to 30% of total candidate compensation. Also, some recruitment agencies would charge companies for every job they work irrespective if the candidate gets hired or not.  This probably is the most expensive candidate sourcing channel for companies.

C. Employee Referral

Organizations run various employee referral programs to reward their employees for successful referrals. Employee referrals have been the most successful recruiting channel for companies. Companies get good candidates without spending too much on recruiting. 

D. Posting Jobs On Social Media

This could be free or companies may opt for paid options where platforms like LinkedIn will make sure the job reaches a larger audience.

Apart from this, there are other channels such as company career page, organic traffic to the company site that attracts more candidate applications.

Why Measuring Resume Source Quality Is Important

A resume sourcing channel that yields the largest number of resumes considered as the best candidate source channel. However, that may not be true. Higher the volume, more the number of resumes you need to screen. That means more time is spent in prescreening candidates and screening resumes; unless you leverage modern technology as AI for resume screening.

Let’s take an example. If you have posted a job on a paid and free job posting site and you have received 500 resumes from these job sites. At the same time, you have opened this job for employee referrals. However, you only got 100 resumes from the employee referral program. So, it seems the job boards are more effective in sourcing resumes compared to employee referrals.

But the story doesn’t end there. What you need to track is how many of these applicants were shortlisted, interviewed and were offered a job. Basically, how many candidates actually progressed in the hiring process.

Also, the workforce is changing. We are moving from Millennials to the Gen-Z workforce. Companies are now more open to remote jobs. Diversity hiring is a focus. So, assuming one leading job board like LinkedIn is your one-stop solution for candidate sourcing could be wrong. LinkedIn statistics suggest the wide distribution of its users based on their demographics. This means one needs to evaluate the quality of the resume sourcing channel. You may also be surprised to see that the resume sourcing channel that brings the highest volume is not always the best source of quality hire.

measure source quality or quality of candidate sourcing channel

How To Calculate Quality Of Candidate Sourcing Channel

First, you need to have a process in place that identifies the source of the resume. If you are using an applicant tracking system (ATS) or a hiring software you should be able to track it easily. If not, then you will have to do it manually.

There can be various categories of resume sources. The finer you go the better it is. For example, a job board is a candidate sourcing channel but does not stop there. Track which job board you got the resume from. If it is Indeed, Monster or other. The same holds true for social media platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, etc. You must be able to track if the resume you received has come from an organic source like the company career page, employee referrals.

Similarly, you should be able to identify if you have received the resume from a recruitment agency. If yes, then which recruitment agency. 

Once you start capturing the source for each resume, you can easily calculate the quality of the source.

Source Quality

For example, if you got 100 resumes from a job board and 10 got shortlisted for the interview process. 5 Clears the first interview and so forth so on. One candidate gets the job offer. In that case, we calculate the quality of the source as below –

Few companies may prefer to use the number of candidates hired as the number rather than the number of candidates clears the first round of interviews. If you want to find the overall source quality for all the resumes you sourced in a year, then the number of hires could be a good indicator. However, if you want to track source quality for different kinds of job roles, then tracking the number of candidates that clears the first round of interviews is a better option.

Also, the reason we want to consider the candidates that cleared the first round is that there are many reasons why a candidate may not get hired. However, clearing the first round of interviews is an indication that the candidate was good enough to be considered. Also, we want to calculate the quality of source so that we know where the good candidates are coming from.

Pass-Through Rate

Another good recruitment metric to use is the pass-through rate. It shows the percentage of candidates pass through each important step in the recruitment and selection process. So, if we consider the same example as above, then the pass though metric would look like below

Total Candidates – 100%

Shortlisted candidates – 10%

Interviewed candidates – 5%

Hired Candidates – 1%

Use Source Quality Metric To Save Money

Now you have the numbers from the quality of candidate sourcing channel metric and pass-through rate metric, you would know which resume sourcing channel works best for which kind of position. You can use this information while allocating the budget for recruitment. You can avoid putting money for sourcing resumes from channels that do not give good results. Or you may want to invest more in recruitment channels that give you the right candidates.

If organic traffic like job applications coming from the company career page gives you better results invest more in employer branding. Or if employee referrals are the source of your top talent then build more robust and effective employee referral programs.

By tracking recruiting source quality you not only save money from investing into poor candidate sourcing channels but you also get more worth of your investment by focusing on the right sourcing channels.

So, if your company is on a tight budget, the source quality metric will guide you in allocating money for the right channels.

Also, by focusing on the right recruiting channel, you automatically improve the quality of applications you receive. It saves you a great deal of time screening irrelevant candidates.

Focusing on Quality Metrics

Often companies use only quantity metrics like how many jobs filled, how many resumes sourced, how much time spent, etc. They often want to measure volume and ignore quality. Focusing on quality metrics in recruitment not only saves you time and money but it also makes your recruitment process effective and productive. Measuring resume sourcing quality is just one of the quality recruitment metrics that helps you hire faster and better.

Amit Gawande

Amit Gawande

Amit Gawande is a Co-Founder of CVViZ, an AI recruiting software. He has more than 15 years of experience in software development and leading large teams. He has built products using NLP and machine learning. He has recruited engineers, programmers, marketing and sales people for his organizations. He believes in using technology for solving real-life problems.

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