When it comes to technical recruitment, the word ‘sourcing’ gets thrown around quite a lot. But what is it, how can you make the most of it and where can you implement it within your existing recruitment strategy? We’ve put together an easy-to-follow cheat sheet detailing all-things tech sourcing, and how to make it work for you:

Sourcing VS Recruiting

In a nutshell, candidate sourcing refers to certain ways that recruiters proactively ‘source’ candidates. With an end-goal of relationship building leading to placing someone in a new role, sourcing is a way to collect information about prospective candidates, as well as inform people about potential job openings.

In terms of recruitment, 'sourcers' find the initial candidates (we’ve included some simple sourcing strategies and tools below), whereas traditional recruiters screen the candidate (think skills, not CV’s), get them interviews and place them into their shiny new roles.

Sourcing should be a part of every recruiter’s arsenal. Whilst some people are strictly 'sourcers' and have no part in the active recruitment process, we believe that sourcing actually compliments the recruitment life cycle perfectly. After all, 'sourcers' can help to hire both present and future needs, as well as find people based on a company's current goals, such as diversity and inclusion. Essentially, engineering your career via some essential sourcing skills is a good way to cover all bases.

Simple Sourcing Strategies

We’ve outlined some simple, yet effective strategies that you can use in order to help you source technical candidates:

The social touch

When it comes to sourcing and social media, you can’t beat LinkedIn. One of the best sourcing strategies out there, LinkedIn is where you’re most likely to find plenty of candidates, both active and passive. Making introductions is easy, and we recommend tailored, personable messaging as this is what’s most likely to stand out to potential candidates.

For something even more personal, Slack is a popular new channel for sourcing tech candidates. Known as one of the best instant messaging tools on the market, there are tons of ‘tech community’ channels just waiting to be found.

In terms of other social platforms, we believe that it depends entirely on your audience when thinking about which ones to utilise. For example, Instagram could be a great resource for finding graduates and entry-level candidates, whereas Twitter is likely to be best suited to those who are more mid-level or above.


Whether you plan to attend or host, events should be a key part of your sourcing strategy. After all, they’re a simple way to find and engage with developers, engineers, architects and more. Making it easy for you to practise your sourcing skills, events are also useful in the sense that they provide simple talking points that you can take advantage of and use for networking with other attendees.

When looking for candidates, you aren’t likely to find them at a glitzy B2B conference. We recommend looking out for hackathons, local meet-ups and anything that involves the words ‘tech’, ‘pizza’ and ‘beer’. For hosting your own events, the same loose rules apply.


At hackajob, we champion the idea of skills over CV’s. And the best way to find out what a candidate can really do? Look at their portfolio. We’re not talking about sketchbooks here. For technical talent, their portfolios can be found on sites such as GitLab and GitHub.

A way to assess what potential candidates can do, you’ll be able to physically see projects where they applied their knowledge and skills to either create something entirely new, or to improve on something else. You can then use a portfolio as a starting point to ask candidates about why they chose to write certain code, what they’d improve upon for next time and what they’d like to be working on next.

Machine learning

Want a hassle free way to source the best candidates for your role? We totally get it, and it’s where machine learning comes in. We’ve spoken about the benefits of machine learning previously, and simply put, it does all the hard work for you. As an example, hackajob’s AI matches candidates to you based on skill set alone.

From there, you’re free to share potential candidates with your team or integrate their profile (including their skillset) into your existing ATS and reach out to them as you please. Making your life easier, hackajob does the sourcing so that you can make the final hiring decisions. It’s like having your very own digital sourcer, available at the drop of a hat.

Best practises

  1. Split out your tasks

Sourcing and recruiting should be split out accordingly. Rome wasn’t built in a day, so give yourself time to build up a pipeline (hackajob can help you with his) and then interview prospective candidates for new roles.

2.   Strategise

There are lots of different ways to build a compelling pipeline of present and future candidates. Think about the skills you require your team to have and go from there. Explore ways to keep your network engaged, such as posting via social media and attending/hosting events.

3.   Utilise Machine Learning

Let machine learning remove any unconscious bias from the hiring process whilst producing only the highest quality candidates based on your skillset. In fact, hackajob can help you hire candidates based on skills (not CV’s) and in just 17 days.

Want to scale your tech hiring? Get in touch. We’d love to help.

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