Obtaining Upper Management Buy-in for Sourcing

Getting Funded

Here are some ideas you can use to make your case for management buy-in:

Figure out the cost of open positions, or “cost-not-to-hire” which can be estimated by adding up the revenue lost each day those positions go unfilled. For example, take the productive output of an average day in this role, and extrapolate that out to a full year’s worth of productive days (approximately 260 working days per year).

Identify what motivates your business leadership, and make your case in that language. They could be motivated by a number of reasons to paint your picture according to what is most important to them.

For example, ask is it:

  • Reduction in cost?
  • Reduction of time to fill?
  • The pain of positions going unfilled?
  • To increase the quality of hire?
  • Secrecy or confidentiality?

Are there any other critical projects like for example a new product line or something that would cause your company to seek an entirely new kind of talent the organization has never worked with before?

Other metrics that could have strong value when proving your case to management include:

  • Reduction in cost per hire
  • Improved performance evaluation
  • Decreased time to perform (from recruited to hired and productive)
  • Reduction in cost per source (job boards, purchased research, etc.)
  • Increase in quality of hire



Change is inevitable, and corporate sourcing teams are among the first to get demolished when it happens. To remain an ongoing concern within the organization the most important aspect of maintaining sustainability is to evangelize.

That’s it. Just TELL someone!

Spread the gospel of sourcing among the business leaders, executives, and influential stakeholders.

Identify a couple of business champions who will help you spread the work on the good work you and your sourcing team do.

These should be your champions who will defend your case in the event of a leadership change or other major environmental changes.

Cultivate relationships with hiring managers – especially your repeat customers. They can be your number one advocates.

If your leadership changes make sure your hiring managers remember you and go to bat for you, or at least ask the new leadership to keep the sourcing team going.

Happy hiring managers have often volunteered to fund some of my projects.

Shally Steckerl

One of the pioneers of the sourcing discipline, Shally is the Founder and former President of The Sourcing Institute, where he has helped numerous F500 and mid-market organizations train and develop their talent sourcing capabilities for nearly 20 years. When it comes to innovative approaches to candidate search, Shally literally wrote the book. He is the author of the industry-standard textbook “The Talent Sourcing and Recruitment Handbook” as well as “The Sourcing Method: Tactics to Find Unfindable Talent.”


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