Collaboration between Recruiters, Sourcers, and Hiring Managers: Establishing a Solid Foundation


Many start-ups in the early stages grow by finding candidates on job sites and through advertisements. By chance, some of them manage to keep growing without any established recruitment processes. However, sooner or later, such companies come to a point when further scaling depends on well-optimized talent function.

Establishing a solid foundation between recruiters, sourcers, and hiring managers is critical for keeping the hiring process consistent. From this post, you will figure out the difference between recruiters, sourcers, and hiring managers and learn how to build effective collaboration.

Who does what?

Let’s start with the basics and clearly define the difference between recruiters, sourcers, and hiring managers. 


Recruiters are mostly the first point of contact for candidates, guiding them through the hiring process until the offer stage. Recruiters may occasionally assist with onboarding in small businesses. They also conduct recruitment intake meetings with the hiring manager, which may also include the sourcer. 

Armed with the sourcer’s phone screen details, the recruiter presents the candidates to the hiring manager, and then manages the candidate’s relationship from this point forward.

Because they serve as the intermediary between employers and candidates, recruiters have a difficult task. They must find people, manage applications, sell themselves well during phone interviews, follow up with candidates, share feedback, and extend offers. For all these tasks, it is important that a recruiter has excellent communication skills and knows how to tailor their speech according to the audience. Also, recruiters must be resilient because, even though hiring is becoming a data-informed action, it is impossible to predict when you will do so.


Sourcer’s task is to look for suitable candidates who are likely to fit a job opening and engage them so that they can be hired. The role of a sourcer is a complex blend of salesperson, investigator, community manager, psychologist, geek, and data-driven analyst. Sourcers are experts in the field of locating and interacting with individuals. They do it all day long, resulting in a steady flow of talent into the pipeline, freeing up the recruiters to concentrate on holding more interviews and, therefore, making more hires.

In addition, one of sourcer’s responsibilities is to map out their pertinent marketplaces. They then compile data into sheets that help them do their jobs more effectively and quickly, including knowing where to look for the right skills in the right organizations, when to reach out, how to do so, and, most crucially, how to get people who aren’t interested in talking to them to agree to an interview.

Hiring Managers

A hiring manager is a person who makes the ultimate decision to hire a candidate for a vacant post. Typically, the hiring manager will be the department head to fill a new opening in their division. In some circumstances, the recruiting manager will act as the new hire’s manager and will have the final say in which applicant the business chooses to hire.

Popular Myths about the “Recruiter-Sourcer” Relationship

Sourcers are junior recruiters

It is erroneously believed that a talent sourcer is junior to a recruiter.

In some companies, they are ranked by seniority. The basic idea was that the position of a talent sourcer is a junior one typically given to interns enrolled in school or recently graduated. After some time and training, they can conduct recruitment after learning enough with the help of this company. This idea is wrong. 

The notion that recruiting is somehow superior to sourcing is somewhat absurd because the two tasks are distinct from one another. Though one person can perform both tasks, they are not the same thing, despite the fact that they are both technically related to hiring new employees. The truth is, seniority applies to both.  You can either start as a sourcer or recruiter, but seniority has nothing to do with career development here from one to the other.

Sourcers and recruiters are the same

Companies frequently commit the error of thinking that sourcers and recruiters are the same. 

In the corporate sphere, these recruiters are frequently referred to as “full-stack recruiters.” However, the majority of recruiters are not sourcers. It does take different personal attributes and similar, but different skill sets to achieve one or the other. Naturally, these result from variations in the jobs.

Sourcers will find you candidates

The task of a sourcer is to find leads and not candidates. It is the recruiter’s responsibility to convert them into applicants and candidates. 

Yes, it may only be a matter of semantics. Still, the OFCCP and EEOC have created rather clear criteria for individuals at various stages of the recruiting process, so it is crucial to distinguish. Sometimes, a sourcer pre-screen the contacts or leads he gathers before sending them to a recruiter. However, sourcers typically produce leads, while recruiters are in charge of qualifying them and converting them into applicants.

Why Recruiters Need Sourcers, and Vice Versa

Sourcers can add enormous value to a company, especially if they are skilled at what they do. This isn’t just because their primary job is to find the right people, engage them, and convert them into candidates. This is due to the wealth of knowledge and techniques that good sourcers possess and employ daily in their work. 

Sourcers gain and develop incredible market insights – not just about what is happening in the labor market or specific markets. They also are knowledgeable about social media trends and, more importantly, competitors.

A good sourcer knows which competitors are hiring what and how many roles, as well as which competitors (or companies) are losing people and why. This data represents a tremendous wealth of business intelligence required to run data-driven HR – and, of course, recruitment. A good sourcer also improves the employer brand of the organization by using quality outreach when approaching potential candidates.

Recruiters are usually very good at assessing people and should also have a bit of a sales flair. A good recruiter understands how to collaborate with candidate experience management and manage three-way communication between the recruiter, the candidate, and the hiring manager. 

The recruiter’s speed, attitude, the experience they have built and managed, and the way they presented the company, the role, the perks, and benefits, as well as their skill at negotiating offers so that everyone leaves the negotiation table a winner, can and will make the difference between closing that top candidate or losing out. A good recruiter always leaves a positive impression even if the candidate who applied was unsuccessful.

The aspect of sourcing is not a part of most recruiters’ jobs. For most recruiters, sourcing begins and ends with LinkedIn searches, it doesn’t go much further than that. 

Sourcers, on the other hand, use their knowledge of where to find the right talent for various roles, as well as their know-how on how to source them, to create a pool of qualified candidates that they can work on converting into interested candidates for the role.

Tips to Ensure Collaboration between Recruiters, Sourcers, and Hiring Managers

Build trust with data

Trust is essential between a sourcer and a recruiter. A recruiter who does not trust the sourcer will fail. As with so many other relationships, trust can make or break this one. Sharing sourcing insights with hiring managers is a great way to practice trust, perhaps during the kickoff meeting:

  • What subject lines have resulted in unusually high open rates in previous searches similar to this one?
  • If you’ve previously linked to company content in your outreach, what content received the most clicks and was most appealing to talent?
  • Which clicks resulted in responses from interested candidates?
  • What resources have you found most useful in the past for roles like this? 
  • Who is your best source of hire for this position or department?
  • How long does it take a recruiter to submit a sourced candidate to a hiring manager?
  • How long does it take for a recruiter to receive feedback?
  • How long does it take for feedback to be given to the sourcer?

All this information can be shared with your hiring manager early to better prepare them for what’s to come. Collect data from your CRM and ATS to create a visual representation of the entire recruiting funnel, then slice and dice metrics to gain insights into your recruiting strategy and process. Use the data to communicate with your hiring manager about missed opportunities or to share areas of opportunity between the Recruiter and Sourcer.

Establish boundaries

The recruiter and the sourcer must respect the boundaries of their respective roles. Involving both of them in the design of the recruitment process is a great way to avoid such blunders. Have a Service Level Agreement which clearly outlines the role of each party in the recruitment process.

Communicate and give feedback

Communication is a heavy word. As with trust and boundaries, a recruiter and a sourcer must communicate with one another. Both parties must also communicate with the hiring manager. The recruiter must keep the sourcer informed from the brief to the closing and during the onboarding process. If one of them withholds information about the recruitment process, the duo is doomed.

Having weekly 1:1 meetings between the sourcer and the recruiter (as well as the hiring manager) goes a long way in fostering communication. It enables both parties to review ongoing missions, share information, and discuss potential roadblocks. Aside from that, those meetings are a great way to bond and/or build trust.

During these calls, the sourcer should be prepared to discuss the activities of his or her candidates and any obstacles they may encounter while contacting potential new candidates. This is also a wonderful opportunity for the recruiter to let the sourcer know which prospects have advanced in the selection process and to update them on any changes to recruiting requirements. Establish the agenda during the initial call so that all parties know the information they must bring.

If a sourcer doesn’t receive feedback on the candidates they have provided, they will never know if they are targeting the correct people. Consider sending a common feedback form or interview guide to hiring managers to complete and return to you within 48 hours after the interview. After receiving this, recruiters and sourcers can have a chat about it. Sourcers can alter their Boolean strings and search to identify the best candidate as soon as they read the feedback from the candidate’s interview.

The most important aspect of a successful recruiter and sourcer relationship is two-way communication. As with any relationship, don’t be afraid to have difficult conversations and challenge each other. When we appreciate and comprehend each other’s circumstances, we become more compassionate and free to extend grace.

Educate hiring managers

Because hiring managers aren’t at the top of the funnel, they may wonder why it takes so long to even see a qualified candidate. So, while they’re going about their daily activities, sourcers and recruiters should always let them know what’s going on in the background.

Create a detailed hiring process for them. Provide them with the specifics and pain points of each stage of the funnel so they can see the parts of the process that aren’t immediately visible to them. This will emphasize the importance of planning and lead time, make them aware of the work going on in the backend, and make them aware of all the dependencies (and interdependencies) along the way.

To educate hiring managers more specifically, tell them what the role they’re currently hiring for has historically looked like. This is the most reliable way to establish realistic expectations about the timeline for their open request. If your hiring manager needs the position filled in three weeks, but the average time to fill it is 45 days, you’re more likely to help them see this through data.

Catch in with hiring managers more often. Even if nothing else, these check-ins should be an opportunity to update hiring managers on the pipeline status for their open positions. Provide sourcing insights. In how many stages of the procedure are there candidates? Who are your preferred candidates, and where are they in the selection process? What applicants require the hiring team’s immediate attention, and who should act on them? What is the pass-through rate? What are the offer rejection reasons?

To Wrap Up: Establish the Solid Foundation of the Recruitment Process

It’s crucial to establish a solid foundation between the recruiter, sourcer, and hiring manager, to maintain consistency in the hiring process, decrease the time it takes to fill positions, and keep all parties happy and sane at work. 

If you lack internal resources or expertise in building recruitment processes, embedded talent solutions will be beneficial for you. At Matchr, we help start-ups and scale-ups to establish consistent recruitment processes, set up effective collaboration between all the parties and deliver on your hiring plans. Get in touch with us, and will find the best solution in terms of deliverability and budget to support your company’s growth.

Article by:
Talent Acquisition Specialist
Talent Acquisition Specialist
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