5 Easy Tricks to Find Great Candidates Online

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A shortage of talent is the biggest challenge in recruitment right now. Recruiters are turning to resume databases to help find the best available talent. Despite there being millions of candidates online, most recruiters only scratch the surface and search for a tiny fraction of the talent on offer. 

James Boshier from leading U.S. job board Resume-Library shares five easy tips on how recruiters can Meet the Moment to source the best talent online.

1. Master the basics of Boolean

For the first quick and easy win, use ANDs, ORs & NOTs to expand or refine your resume database search. 

find great candidates online

Sales AND Admin returns resumes matching both words.

Sales OR Admin returns resumes matching either word.

Sales NOT Admin returns resumes that contain the word Sales but exclude any that contain Admin.

Putting words in quotes requires an exact match of the phrase. Sales Manager will return candidates with the words ‘Sales’ and ‘Manager’ anywhere in their resume whereas “Sales Manager” will only return resumes with the exact phrase e.g. both words next to each other.

You can combine all of these techniques to create complex Boolean searches; however, be careful, as you need to use brackets when combining the operators AND, OR, & NOT.

Still confused? Then cheat! Most resume databases have dictionaries of searches you can use or edit, such as this one from Resume-Library.

use resume library to find great candidates online

2. Use synonyms to find hidden talent

What’s the difference between an Account Manager, a Client Success Manager, a Customer Champion, or a Client Relationship Specialist? Not a lot! Different businesses call similar roles very different things. 

Use synonyms to find thousands more candidates. Check out this example…

Looking for “Personal Assistant” returns 6,102 candidates.

using synonyms to find great candidates online

Adding synonyms of similar job titles returns 8,733 candidates.

“But I’m not a human thesaurus! How am I meant to think of all those different job titles?” 

Use platforms like Resume-Library.com which uses AI to suggest different job titles. The AI is based on millions of resumes, identifying patterns of similar job titles.

resume search to find great candidates online

3. Create Resume Alerts

Save your search as a Resume Alert so that you get notified when a new candidate becomes available. You can choose how frequently you want to be notified: immediately, hourly, daily or weekly.

resume alert

Alerts are sent straight to your inbox so you can quickly contact the candidate and hopefully get in touch with them before anyone else.

4. Play the numbers game with Invite to Apply

Do you want more quality candidates to apply to your vacancy? Send out messages to matching candidates inviting them to apply to your role

Simple steps:

  1. Create a resume search (using the techniques you’ve just learned)
  2. Select Invite to Apply (either choose candidates individually or bulk select the top matches)
  3. Select the vacancy 
  4. Add some personalization to the message and hit send!

Just watch those extra applications come flooding in.

invite candidates

5. Search passive candidates to find the real gems

99.3% of recruiters search for candidates that have recently uploaded a resume. While that makes a lot of sense, there are millions of passive candidates who aren’t being contacted and could be ready for a change! Stand out from the crowd and contact candidates that registered two to five years ago.

Use data to increase your success rate.

The average length someone stays in a job is currently two years and four months. However, this varies massively by industry and role:

Data Analyst 1 year 2 months
Nursery Practitioner 1 year 3 months
Marketing Executive 1 year 5 months
Receptionist 1 year 8 months
Sales Executive 2 years 1 month
Registered General Nurse 2 years 7 months
HGV Driver 3 years 2 months
CEO 4 years 5 months
Police Officer 13 years 1 month


Change the filters on your resume search to target older candidates who might be tempted by a new role.

Top tip: Keep career progression in mind. Keep your search quite broad and focus on skills rather than job titles. For example, someone who was a Junior Sales Associate five years ago is likely to be looking for a more senior role now.

Bullhorn seamlessly integrates with online candidate databases (including Resume-Library.com) so you can import candidates straight into your talent pool with 1-click. Bullhorn users can Meet The Moment with 14 days free access to Resume-Library including 50 free resume downloads.