What's the Difference Between a Sourcer and a Recruiter?

Brianna Rooney
January 31, 2022

Lately, there has been a lot of talk about the differences between what a sourcer does versus what  a recruiter does. Both positions, sourcers and recruiters, are intertwined roles that contribute to the talent acquisition team. It is important to remember that it goes sourcer, then moves up to recruiter- meaning if you are a strong recruiter, then you probably are a really good sourcer! Let us jump in and take a deeper look into how these two roles are similar and how they differ and how you work together. Solid communication and teamwork are a must!


Sourcers are the people who source and find the candidates to fill the top of funnel for a particular role. For example, let’s say you have a job that you have to fill with a software engineer. In doing so, you look at the client, you talk to the team, you talk to the hiring manager, and overall you get all the specifics; not just basing the candidate on the job description. Job descriptions are like wish lists, where they are either too thorough or not thorough enough. This is where a sourcing map comes in. A sourcing map allows you to look at the team and look at the schools they went to in order to find a common denominator; adding what they’re looking for and where they are trying to go as an agency. This is done so that you can really nail out a perfect search! There are many different ways in which you can do those booleans. A sourcer is good at doing booleans through searches, using LinkedIn, and looking at different places to find people. Sourcers map out what they are looking for and they then execute. From there, they send out messages to hook a candidate and connect them to a recruiter. The recruiter steps in to take the candidate through the rest of the hiring process. Responsibilities of a sourcer really depend on the company you work for and what they demand of you.


There’s a certain type of spirit in being a recruiter. This spirit is making sure the candidate is changing their own lives by going through the interview process, with a great story that ultimately leads to an offer, that lands them a career that will take them wherever they want to go. The recruiter is the start and finish of the hiring process, taking responsibility for the whole kit and caboodle. This is referred to as a full cycle recruiter; someone who can successfully pitch the client, offer a great candidate experience, work with hiring managers, and ultimately help make the offer and give a great closing experience. As a recruiter, it is important to develop relationships with candidates, clients, feast off different referrals, do good ethical work, get recommendations, and really work with the client and candidate. Full cycle recruiters are versatile and should be able to jump in any stage of the hiring process.

Do you want to be a sourcer? Do you want to be a recruiter? Do you want to do it all and be a full cycle recruiter? There's a lot to know in the recruiting industry. This industry is such a beast and such a market especially now, in 2021. The recruiting world is thriving, changing lives, and changing the world. The most exciting part is that there are so many recruiting roles in the industry.

At the end of the day, make sure you are being the best sourcer, recruiter, and full-cycle recruiter. Possibilities are endless. With each great job you do, you are climbing up to conquer your own goals and feeling great about it.  

Check out this video to hear it from me, personally: