How AI-Powered Direct Sourcing Increases Productivity and Leads to Better Hires

There’s a lot of anxiety among workers and employers alike surrounding the use of AI in hiring, but I’d like to put some of those fears to rest.

Direct Sourcing

There’s a lot of anxiety among workers and employers alike surrounding the use of AI in hiring, but I’d like to put some of those fears to rest. 

First of all, using AI as part of your recruiting and hiring strategy does not mean handing all of your decision-making over to an algorithm. Instead, when implemented correctly, it permits you to efficiently and objectively identify candidates that should have a higher probability of success with your company and it eliminates the subjectivity in the process that can lead to bias in recruiting decisions, resulting in bad hires.  

In other words, the right AI-powered HR strategies actually accelerate good hiring by eliminating sourcing and recruitment biases. And the best example of this in action is AI-powered direct sourcing

What is Direct Sourcing?  

Direct sourcing is the process by which employers and their HR staff directly recruit and communicate with talent. It allows them directly to engage with and hire job candidates in a transparent, efficient manner, instead of working with a third-party recruiter. 

There are a number of immediate, tangible benefits to using direct sourcing software tools in addition to or instead of a third-party recruiter. According to recent research by Staffing Industry Analysts, it costs 35% less to hire a worker through a direct sourcing program than through a third-party recruiter – and the same study showed that at least 60 percent of staffing leaders plan on implementing direct sourcing programs in the next two years. Our own internal research has shown that employers using a direct sourcing program consistently see a response rate of 55% or more to their openings, compared to traditional job boards, which hover somewhere 2-5%.  

An AI-powered direct sourcing platform will recruit for you 24/7 and at a rate that no human recruiter can. It will automatically deliver you the profiles of qualified candidates who are actively searching for work in a constantly refreshed talent marketplace, whom you can then contact and interview.  

I believe in the power of AI for recruiting so much that I even changed the course of my career for it. Personal story: I was once an executive at a major traditional healthcare staffing company. I helped to drive two of the most significant advancements over the last 20 years: Vendor Management Systems (VMS) and Managed Service Programs (MSPs). While these systems are the status quo today – covering ~70% of the healthcare staffing market – they often fail to solve the biggest pain points for healthcare organizations:  sourcing and credentialing, which often led to critical roles remaining vacant for weeks on end.   

But then I was introduced to the idea of AI-powered direct sourcing for healthcare staffing, and I could not stop thinking about it. I was hooked. When I had the opportunity to leave the company I had been working for and join a company that had pioneered an AI-powered talent marketplace platform that allowed companies to directly and quickly source talent while maintaining compliance standards, I jumped at the opportunity.   

Here’s why I’m so glad that I said “yes” to AI-powered direct sourcing.  

Direct Sourcing Saves You the Cost of Bad Hires  

It’s expensive for employers to have a job open for too long. CareerBuilder estimates that employers lose more than $14,000 on average for every job that stays vacant for three months or longer, and this cost can be upwards of $25,000 for more advanced positions. This can often lead to a sense of impatience as a human-powered hiring process drags on, leading to snap decisions fueled by human bias.  

Hiring the wrong person for the role is even more expensive, however. According to hiring expert Dr. Bradford Smart, the estimated cost of a mis-hired worker can be anywhere from 5 to 27 times the amount of the person’s actual pay. This number depends on their role and responsibility level, and the cost of recruiting them using traditional third-party sourcing–which, according to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) can cost up to 3 to 4 times that person’s salary on paper.  

Direct sourcing eliminates much of the cost of bad hires by automating the process, and delivering to you qualified, interested candidates quickly and efficiently. Directly sourcing from a talent marketplace – one that matches candidates based on the information you have given about your desired skills and qualifications, more so than subjective criteria like “cultural fit” or whether they went to the same college as your hiring manager – makes it much more likely that you’ll find a good fit.  

One final note: your employees and managers are probably not afraid of using AI in the hiring process as you might think. According to the Pew Research Center, nearly half of American workers trust AI to do a better job than humans when evaluating all job applicants equally.  

Change is hard and it can be intimidating to think about adding direct sourcing to your hiring strategy. But based on my experience, I can confirm the time is now to make the leap into AI-powered direct sourcing, especially if you are trying to streamline your operations in a constantly changing economy. It’s easier to weather economic headwinds while still hiring quality talent if you eliminate a lot of the cost and bias of human recruiters. 

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Steve Saville

Content marketing specialist at OutreachMama

Steve Saville is the President of SkillGigs, an e-commerce talent marketplace that pairs skilled healthcare and technology job seekers with AI-matched work opportunities. Learn more at