Everyone wants the magic potion for the most efficient and innovative modern talent acquisition teams. In certain industries, the modernization and drive for cutting-edge teams has reached a crisis point.

Not to be dramatic but we are almost at a perish or die moment.

I have had the pleasure to consult with all types of businesses, large and small across the nation in the areas of talent acquisition (TA). All the top box performers share a similar philosophy as to the makings of a great team.

I share the common elements below.


Four Components of a Modern Talent Acquisition Team

1. Traditional Recruiting

Stating the obvious. We still need traditional full-life-cycle recruiters to manage the candidate and hiring manager process, end-to-end.

Recruiting is the giant overseer to which all other components support.


2. Sourcing

The best TA organizations view sourcing as the only way to truly pipeline candidates for the future. Sourcing isn’t a vending machine that spits out candidates or engages in just-in-time staffing.

It is the long-term woo of prospects who for whatever reason, aren’t ready to take a job right now. However, there are Sourcers who function on emergent needs. It’s not the best use of Sourcers, but most successful TA team has at least one Sourcer reserved for difficult and urgent requirements.

Bottom line, if you don’t have Sourcers, you aren’t pipelining.  It’s like being the Yankees without a minor league farm team to pull from.  There is an investment that is necessary to grow talent until the talent is ready.

And to that end, you can’t grow talent without the brand messaging that comes from the next component of recruitment marketing.


3. Recruitment Marketing

Content, Content, Content. Engage, Engage, Engage. Candidates are consumers. We are selling our positions to them just like Apple markets an iPhone.

The connections should be measurable, planned, constant, and persistent.  Sourcers won’t be successful without the knowledge foundational marketing knowledge around timing, content, and engagement.

A candidate relationship database or recruiting platform is required to maintain these budding relationships and connections.

Sourcing and Recruitment Marketing go together. You can’t have one without the other.


4. Competitive Intelligence

Would it be easier to find talent if you were the leader in pay, benefits, and culture? You bet it would.

Knowing a competitor’s weakness is a skill that has been long perfected in the sales industry.  Those same tactics of researching a competitors’ product are used today in market analysis.

Engagement campaigns to passive candidates can be tailored to fill a gap in a competitor limitation.  As an example, consider a competitor that has shown to have a weakness in the areas of diversity, equity, and inclusion.

A Recruiter or Sourcer would leverage that intel by focusing a recruitment marketing campaign around the diversity programs and underrepresented individuals in leadership. Offering solutions to a candidate’s problem is ultimately what makes a person apply online for a new position.


Can a modern talent acquisition team be successful without these four components? I am going to go out on a limb to say no, it is not possible.

Missing even one component puts an organization at risk for failed performance.

If you don’t have sourcing, you aren’t pipelining. Without recruitment marketing, you are failing to understand the consumer-driven candidate of today. And if you don’t have competitive intelligence, you won’t be able to woo candidates out of their current jobs.

And, without Recruiters pushing the candidates through the process, no one would ever get hired.

Can a leader rearrange duties in a smaller organization so that all four of these components are covered by one person?  Yes.

There are varying degrees of need, but a need, nonetheless. Welcome to the 21st century of talent acquisition.

Happy Hunting.

Christine Hampton

Christine is a Doctor of Business Administration candidate researching talent sourcing strategies in healthcare. This is Christine's 29th year in Talent Acquisition, with the last 9 years focusing on sourcing and recruitment marketing.