In the tech industry, when a company creates a product to solve its own issues or uses its own product religiously to experience it as a user would, it’s called “dogfooding.”
We’re not big on the imagery of eating our own dog food (yuck!), but we do love using our own products. “Dogfooding” 1-Page SOURCE means just that – we use it to do our own recruiting. It means we understand how SOURCE works for our customers and helps us anticipate and quickly solve any issues that might crop up.
Mostly, though, we use SOURCE to source for our own hiring campaigns because it just flat-out does its job: delivering high-quality candidate pools, much faster than manually possible. Our recruiting team can’t imagine going back to the days of trawling LinkedIn or sending endless ignored InMails.
Want the proof? We thought we’d chat with the 1-Page folks who use it every day to find out exactly how it’s changed how they work.
Andrew: I’m sitting with Lydia Cuarezma, our Recruiting Coordinator, and Amy Meyer, our Chief of Staff, and Head of People Operations.
First things first, let’s talk about the pre-SOURCE days. Lydia, what were things like for you?
Lydia: I learned how to source using LinkedIn Recruiter, so I would take two to three hours a day looking for qualified people. And then, of course, I’d have to reach out to them, but I’d have no email addresses or phone numbers for most people. I found out that I’d have to connect with them first and wait and see.
A: So you’d do the whole “Connect and wait” thing.
L: Exactly. Connect. Send an InMail. Wait. And then inevitably almost no one would respond, so I’d feel like my work was for nothing. Plus, I felt like I was bothering them through LinkedIn.
A: OK, so let’s talk about when you started using SOURCE. How did that process change?
L: With SOURCE we have the email, and it’s super cool to be able to reach out directly and say, “I think you’re a great fit – let’s get the conversation started.” It feels way more personal and like a conversation than LinkedIn, which makes you start everything in this stilted, “I am a recruiter” way.
A: Doesn’t that seem just as annoying, though? Reaching out through SOURCE versus an InMail?
L: Actually, it’s not at all! We’ve found that people who were really interested had great responses. They’d say things like, “This is great. Thanks for your email and thanks for thinking I’d be a great fit. I’d be interested in a call.” But even if people weren’t interested, we’d still get a lot of positive responses like, “Thanks, I’m not looking to make a change at the moment.” That’s way better than complete silence at the other end.
A: Amy, as Lydia’s manager and Head of People Operations, how do you see SOURCE changing your team’s workload?
Amy: Can I say it’s kind of magical? [laughter] It’s much more efficient and you see results a lot faster. My attention – like all recruiters and people operations folks – is split across a lot of different things. As a Hiring Manager, for example, to get emails from passive but engaged candidates saying they’re interested in an opportunity when I’ve barely done anything, relatively speaking, is magical.
A: How are response rates for the campaigns you’ve run so far?
Amy: In our last campaign (for a product marketing manager) we achieved a 50 percent response rate. And when you compare that to campaigns not using SOURCE, it’s just phenomenal. People feel like we handpicked them and the opportunity is special. Even if they’re not interested in it or it’s not the right match, they still feel engaged enough to respond. They even refer other candidates to the role or for other open roles they saw.
Amy: Right? I always say, “Great! When are we running our next campaign?”
A: And what did you do before SOURCE? You were basically running recruiting for the whole company before we had a full-time recruiter.
Amy: We were a relatively small company before we had any sort of recruiting function – only about 15 people. A lot of it was just “who knows who?” We relied mostly on referrals, trying to leverage our small network. Hiring took forever. It could take us as long as two-quarters to fill a role back then.
A: Whereas now, post-SOURCE, we seem to have on-sites every week…
Amy: Exactly. And we do! Now we have candidates coming in all the time. We have on-sites every week and more candidates in the pipeline for us to review. Ultimately, we’re making the right hires.
It also saves us from this trap of having too many inbound applicants. Of course you want to respond to everyone. I wouldn’t ever want to fail to communicate with an applicant. But then it’s incumbent on your team to respond to every inbound candidate, even ones with no relevant experience, and it just clogs everything up. Smart, reliable, data-based sourcing of qualified passive candidates works much better, from my point of view and doing this at 1-Page for the past couple of years.
A: Lydia, how would you say SOURCE compares with those other mediums? Job boards and referrals in particular?
L: We still rely a lot on referrals, and we do still receive a lot of inbound applicants from job boards, of course. But the quality of the candidates we get from SOURCE is a lot better than the candidates we get from other places. I mean, referred candidates can definitely be high-quality candidates, but it’s a bit different in the sense that we get to pick the attributes we’re looking for in SOURCE.
A: Right. But SOURCE candidates are passive. Are you saying they’re higher quality than inbound applicants who self-selected for the position based on a listing…?
L: It’s a far more efficient use of our time to focus on the people we identify through SOURCE, yes. I agree with Amy that a lot of people apply to a lot of positions even if they’re not qualified at all and have no investment in the role or the company. And we respond to everyone, but it’s not an efficient use of time because it doesn’t get us closer to finding the right hire.
In SOURCE, I can specify attributes like, “I need X amount of experience for this person,” or “I want them to have this skill, but not this skill.” That level of control over the sourcing process gives me the type of people I want right away. So even though they’re passive, they’re automatically high-quality candidates, and it’s effective for us to reach out to them personally.
A: That makes sense. You talked about how you used to use LinkedIn – how much time are you saving now that you’re using SOURCE?
L: It could take me up to two days to get 50 qualified candidates for outreach through LinkedIn. With SOURCE, it’s so fast. I mean, two hours, maybe less than that. Though I will say that a few times it took longer, when I was being a bit pickier to make sure we got the best pool.
A: Sourcing is super people-based, but of course as a business, we need to measure things. Can you talk about how 1-Page’s platform impacts our recruiting metrics?
L: Time-to-source is halved, at least. And the quality of candidate is way higher, because we know the people we’re reaching out to are the ones we’re looking for.
Amy: Right, in addition to a much higher response rate, which we’ve both alluded to earlier. It also just significantly boosts our pipeline. Week-on-week, the number of quality candidates in our pipeline has increased significantly. General candidate flow is up, and we have more people in each stage of the process.
L: I’d also add that things just move faster. Like Amy said, candidates just move quicker down the pipeline. The higher quality of candidates seems to accelerate things. Whereas before we’d have multiple threads trying to get ahold of someone, now it’s more like, “I’m interested. Let’s set up a call.” “Great. Does this work for you.” “Yes.” And we’re already on the phone call and then we’re setting up an on-site. Much less time-consuming back-and-forth at the outset.
A: So you’d both say you’re pretty happy 1-Page decided to create SOURCE, then?
L: I’d say so! It saves me tons of time and gets me a much higher-quality pool of people who actually enjoy it when I reach out to them. That’s pretty much the recruiter’s dream.
Amy: Absolutely. And one of the things I’m looking forward to studying is how SOURCE impacts one of my major indicators for recruiting success – retention. I always want to know that someone is successful three months, six months, a year after they join, and what the lifecycle of the position is like after they start. We want to see long-term success, not just meeting our hiring plan. And that’s the next major thing I want to look at how to address with SOURCE – is it contributing to that alignment across the hiring manager, executive, and the team on job description and onboarding that set up a new hire for success.
A: Thank you both so much for your time!