Old School Sourcing Still Works!

By Tony Palm

During his presentation at the recruitDC 2016 Fall Event, Steve Levy said (I’m paraphrasing here), “. . . to be effective, sourcing HAS to connect with candidates where they are”. He even suggested to reach college students, consider posting ‘tearaway’ flyers in campus buildings where computer courses are being taught, or outside campus hang outs. My initial thought was, no way would that work with today’s young professionals. But I just couldn’t get the flyer idea out of my head; kinda like an ear-bug, it just kept coming back. 

Currently I’m working on a staffing contract for Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Washington to place government employees into positions at 7 different installations across the National Capital Region (NCR). These positions require skilled labor experience, and for obvious reasons, prior Navy service would be a BIG plus. The challenge is getting the information out to those veteran and transitioning sailors in a way that is informative AND capture their attention. Even with my extensive network of active duty career counselors and veteran employment assistance groups, getting the word out to the individual warfighter is a daunting task.

Enter Levy’s tear-away ad ~ Using WWII recruiting posters which I modified for my purposes, I created these two flyers; the results have been AMAZING! I’ve been delivering them to ships and SEABEE commands all over the NCR as well as down in Norfolk and Virginia Beach. Now I recognize not everyone has access like this old retired sea-dog, but anyone can find the “Standard Distribution Mailing List” for every military branch with a quick G-search and mail flyers to each command. But the biggest response so far has been from posting them on different Navy-centric group pages on Facebook.

Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine the numbers I’d generate from the social media effort using these flyers. Although I did remove the contact info tabs at the bottom. Since launching this (advertising) campaign in late December, I’ve received 26 resumes, screened 18, and have submitted 13! Only 1 candidate has been interviewed thus far, but the federal government isn’t known for short “time to hires” . . . just sayin!

For me, the take-away from Steve’s presentation is to make sourcing personal and FUN. But who would have believed it could also be so effective?

Make it a GREAT day!

Tony Palm, President, TP&A LLC


Tony Palm is a long time recruitDC volunteer, veteran staffing leader in the DC area, and President of the Veteran-Owned Tony Palm & Associates.  He is a former US Navy officer, and well-entrenched in the Military community here in DC. Connect with Tony on LinkedIn or Twitter