How Sourcers Can Help With Business Development

“How can I improve the effectiveness of my consultants business development skills?”

That’s the number one question I get asked by CEOs and Directors of recruitment firms. In their minds, it’s the fee earners alone who hold the key to winning more business.

The most successful firms I work with take a different approach.

They understand that business development has to be part of the culture of the organisation.  They understand that every person in the organisation has a role to play.

These firms encourage their researchers and resourcers to take a more active role in business development.

The mindset of candidate sourcers in these organisations is subtly different. Instead of focussing uniquely on finding specific skill sets for roles, they’re also looking for relevant market information. Which organisations are going through change? Who is likely to be losing or hiring people in the next few months?

So what does this mean in the field?

1. CV databases

When they find active candidates in permanent roles, they alert a consultant. The consultant can contact the company, or line manager and start building a relationship before the person actually leaves.

2. Actively Interviewing Candidates

Every day researchers and resources speak to people who are already actively interviewing for vacancies,  this can give multiple leads:

  • Identifying the company they are leaving.
  • Discovering the name of the company where they are interviewing.
  • Names of companies where they’ve interviewed but been unsuccessful.
  • Details of major change programs or projects in organisations that are likely to result in hiring or have hired recently.

3. Contractors on Contract

They will come across many contractors who are already in contracts and not actively looking. This is still a useful lead because it tells consultants which companies are spending money on contractors with specific skill sets.
These are just three of the ways researchers and resourcers can find and share quality lead information across the organisation. Small but significant ways they can help business developers make more from the time they spend on the phone, or in front of clients.


How can you help researchers and resourcers get better at sharing useful business development related market intelligence?

  1. Awareness – Make sure they understand what market information is valuable to the business and why. It may seem obvious, but it needs to be laid out in detail and documented so they can refer back to it.
  2. Collate & Organise – work out a way to collate all the market intelligence that is gathered and shared with the business developers. Managers can ensure information has been actioned and successes shared with the researchers and resourcers.
  3. Recognise – Researchers and resourcers aren’t always treated too well by consultants. Managers need to make sure that consultants are actively saying thank you when they get good information that helps them find new requirements.