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Talent Pipeline: 6 Steps to Build a Strong Talent Pipeline with Sourcing Automation

August 16, 2023

Amidst today’s fast-paced and competitive landscape, you cannot wait for candidates to apply for your open roles. In fact, a majority of the global workforce consists of passive talent - around 70%, hence it is not the right approach to start sourcing only when you have requirements. Recruitment has transformed at full-scale over the last decade. Your organization needs to be prepared to hire candidates in no time, the attrition rates are at an all-time high. 

On the other hand, top talent doesn't wait for anyone. It’s a candidate-centric world and recruiters are chasing quality talent harder than ever. Sourcing passive candidates is not a ‘nice-to-have’ strategy anymore, it’s being rigorously worked on and is already a mainstream talent sourcing approach for a large number of enterprises. 

While identifying and reaching out to candidates in order to draw them to your recruitment pipeline is a tedious process, most recruiters do not have enough time to start from scratch every time they need to hire someone. Building your talent pipeline can help you solve this, it helps your recruitment team and overall organization to move faster with a lasting impact.

A solid talent pipeline will not only help you accelerate your hiring but also significantly improve the quality of candidates. The talent that you acquire drives your organization’s trajectory and can make or break your growth. So it’s vital to understand how to build a talent pipeline that your organization can rely on. In this blog, we will discuss the exact steps you need to build a strong sourcing pipeline, and how you can leverage automation to up your game. Stick around for some deep actionable insights.

What is a Talent Pipeline? 

Before we dive into the steps required to build a talent pipeline, let’s first find out what exactly it refers to. 

A talent pipeline, at its core, is a collection of pre-screened and qualified candidates who can potentially fill your organization’s open roles. Also, don’t forget – your talent pool should only consist of candidates who are willing to join your organization. The objective here is to hire quickly and easily whenever requirements arise. Having a talent pool full of competent candidates gives recruiters a great variety of choices while hiring for a role. With multiple rounds of screening, hiring teams can also find out if talent is compatible enough with their team culture.

Talent pipelines usually consist of two types of candidates:

  • External candidates: Qualified prospects who have been sourced by your team as they displayed potential to fit current or near future roles well.
  • Internal candidates: Covers the existing employees who have been performing well and hence can be hired to different departments of your organization. 

A large part of your recruitment team’s efforts and focus should revolve around external candidates, because at the end of the day – your organization is growing. So adding up to the headcount is more important than anything else.

Top Benefits of Talent Pipeline

Building a talent pipeline filled with qualified and skilled candidates has multi-dimensional benefits for your organization. Whether it’s the stakeholders, hiring managers or recruiters – an established talent pool gives the comfort and convenience of effortless hiring. Additionally, as you source proactively and not just rely on job applications – getting high-quality talent is assured. This stat just confirms that – 1 in every 72 Sourced candidates is hired compared to every 1 in 152 candidates who apply to open positions.

Let’s find out the most impactful benefits of building a talent pipeline and see how they are transforming the face of recruitment.

#1 Improved Cost and Time of Hiring

Consider the case when you don’t have a talent pool ready and hiring requirements come about. If you don’t have a sourced pool of candidates, it might take you a few days or even weeks to get some candidates to the top of your recruitment funnel. No matter whether you are sourcing actively or passively – creating a talent sourcing strategy, screening sourced candidates and recruiting them is a lengthy journey. However, building a talent pool with passively sourced, qualified and screened candidates saves a plethora of time for recruiters and enables them to hire whenever there’s a need. As building a talent pipeline is a continuous process and it does not stop even when there are no open roles, recruiters don’t need to panic.

Costs related to recruitment are significantly reduced through building a talent pipeline and sourcing candidates passively as a matter of course. You primarily cut down job advertising expenses and utilize your recruitment team optimally for evaluating and engaging candidates, which further impacts the overall costs as well as productivity.

#2 Engaging Passive Candidates 

A large number of candidates who you meet, identify on social media or the ones referred to you by someone trustworthy – are usually not seeking a job currently. But what if you have a tempting offer for them in the future? Building a relationship with candidates is the key to successful passive recruiting and having an established talent pipeline helps you in that. Effectively engaging and nurturing candidates in a consistent manner is fruitful in the long run as it builds trust and persuades top talent to work with your company.

#3 Improves Candidate Experience

Quality candidates do not apply to open positions nowadays, as they are already being reached out to by numerous recruiters. One thing that all candidates seek no matter what is a prolific candidate experience and that is led by building a talent pool. Unlike in cases of application-based hiring, candidates in the sourcing pipeline are constantly engaged, informed and nurtured by recruiters/organizations. Additionally, being informed throughout the application process reduces candidate drop-offs significantly.

What are the Different Stages in a Talent Pipeline?

Let’s break down the various stages of a talent pipeline: 

  • Sourcing: Identifying quality talent and adding them to your initial sourcing campaign.
  • Pre-Screening:  Passively screening them based on skills, experience and the type of work they have done in the past.
  • Outreach & Engagement: If a candidate is qualified enough, reach out to them. Engage with them through different channels. Create nurture campaigns for conveying company values, culture, career advice and more. Inform them about the compensation, perks and role requirements.
  • Assessment & Interview: Once you reach out and engage with them, and if they’re interested in the role - the next stage is interviewing them.
  • Onboarding: You have got the right fit for your company and it’s time to onboard them. 
  • Training & Development: To help candidates understand and learn the way your company operates, you need to train them. This also minimizes the chance of candidates leaving the company soon.

How to Build an Efficient Talent Pipeline in 6 Easy Steps?

Building an effective talent pipeline is not a destination, but a journey. As you move forward, learn and grow – your talent pipeline will be easier to optimize along the way. However, chasing perfection, in the beginning, might halt your growth. Here are the steps that you need to follow for establishing an efficient talent pipeline. 

  1. Analyze Your Organization’s Talent Requirements and Long-Term Goals

Before you start building your talent pipeline, discuss and analyze your organization’s existing skill gaps, current talent needs, upcoming open positions and the major changes in business strategy that might directly impact your recruitment plans. 

Connect with talent executives, department heads, company leaders and other stakeholders to collect information and perform a thorough analysis of -

  • All the open positions currently
  • Relevant skills required for each of these positions 
  • Locations for these open roles
  • Company expansion plans
  • Department restructuring plans

As a recruiter, you must plan for all the possibilities beforehand when creating your talent pipeline. It will further help you tweak the hiring strategy the right way and generate better results in terms of talent acquisition. How? By mapping the current requirements with the kind of talent to be sourced and keeping a check on the anticipated changes in the future.

  1. Frame a Talent Sourcing Strategy

The next step is to plan your sourcing. Gone are the times when advertising all the different types of job roles on the same platforms was enough. With the competition rising every other moment, having just a couple of sources for acquiring talent won’t work. You need to have a solid plan that covers almost all the possible platforms for sourcing quality talent. Further, each platform has its own different formats and approaches that help in getting optimal results. 

Your talent sourcing strategy comprehensively defines the various methods of sourcing you are going to follow, the priority order for each job role, job-specific resources and the ideal approach for each. Some of the most popular methods of sourcing candidates:

  • Social Media sourcing: LinkedIn, being the biggest professional platform in the world, is the primary platform for sourcing candidates and it almost doesn’t matter what role it is. Apart from that, Twitter, Facebook and even Instagram are now being consistently utilized to source quality talent.
  • Referrals: 48% of businesses say their top-quality hires come from referrals. Often ignored, referrals can be a great addition to your talent pipeline strategy.
  • Events: Corporate events and recruitment fairs attract the best of the candidates and can connect you with quality talent.

  1.  Reach Out to Candidates

Once you identify and screen candidate profiles, you can reach out to them via LinkedIn, emails or other channels they are usually active on. Remember to not follow a straight selling approach, but try to build genuine connections with your target candidates. For accomplishing this, you can engage with their content online, and talk about their career goals. Exchange opinions and discuss things they’re passionate about. 

Lead the conversations to understand the candidate’s expectations and check if they are open to new opportunities. Follow a typical community approach rather than pitching them with lengthy job descriptions. 

Reaching out to hundreds of candidates can be too overwhelming for you as a recruiter. But as your organization grows and requirements scale up, it’s necessary. How do you cope with it? Using a sourcing automation tool is the optimal way through to scale up your passive sourcing campaigns seamlessly (more on this later). 

  1. Evaluate Candidates in Your Talent Pool

Once candidates are sourced after pre-screening, it’s time to assess them and filter your talent pool based on various job role requirements. Note that this stage is very critical as you analyze if a candidate is a right fit for your company along with being technically suited. Some of the parameters apart from their role-specific skills are:

  • Overall professional experience in the past
  • Potential to deal with daily challenges of the role
  • Culture fit
  • Communication and collaboration abilities 
  • Their personal goals and expectations

Although assessing and filtering candidates is largely driven by the department's expectations and core skillset relevant to the job role, recruiters need to double-check check personality traits and general abilities of the candidates.

  1. Nurture Talent in Your Pipeline

One of the most important steps in successfully building a talent pipeline is candidate nurturing. Engaging with your candidates and nurturing them acts as a catalyst for your transition from sourcing to recruiting. How? Filling your talent pipeline with quality candidates is one task, but persuading them through value addition to joining your organization is a different challenge. A majority of individuals in your pipeline are passive candidates, who are pretty comfortable with their existing jobs. You need to strengthen the relationship by sharing relevant engaging content regularly.

No doubt nurturing talent in your pipeline is a long-term process. However, it returns compounding results when done in the right way. All recruiters need to do is to stick to it consistently and keep providing value along with reasons for the candidates to join your team.

Fill Your Talent Pipeline Seamlessly with Nurturebox

Analyzing your organization’s talent needs, preparing a strategy,  sourcing candidates, and handling outreach as well as engagement manually, can be too hectic and tedious for recruitment teams. Add up to that the continuous management of the talent pipeline – it ultimately harms the productivity of recruiters and hence organizations who look to hire top talent in the shortest time possible and conveniently. 

Nurturebox solves this huge problem by enabling recruiters and talent teams to automate candidate outreach, engagement, pipeline management and performance analysis. That’s not all – the tool integrates with your existing technology stack, so you, as a recruiter, do not need to worry about overwhelming configurations. Just download the Nurturebox Chrome extension, sign up and you’re good to go!

Here’s how you can fill your talent sourcing pipeline using Nurturebox plugin within minutes:

  • Once signed up, open the Chrome extension
  • Go to your LinkedIn profile and find your desired candidates using boolean searches
  • Add any candidate to your sourcing campaign with a single click
  • Extract the contact details of the candidates 
  • Integrate sourced candidates’ data with your Recruitee ATS
  • Reach out to candidates on any of the platforms using templates – LinkedIn messages, WhatsApp and Gmail. You can opt for all the platforms at once too  
  • Create your email nurture campaigns with the Lemlist plugin and engage your candidates

Hence your entire talent pipeline is sorted through a single window – all the more remarkable reason to join Nurturebox now!

Amidst today’s noisy digital world, brands find it challenging to create meaningful connections with their customer base and target audience. Getting the target consumer’s attention and persuading them to buy from you gets even trickier. Hence, content marketing has become more crucial than ever for brands to attract, educate, and retain customers.

Content creation is a top priority for 80% of marketers, and there is no reason it shouldn’t be. Consistent, high-quality, and engaging content impacts your audience’s decisions through education and persuasion.

Depending on your business goals and requirements, the role of Content Marketers you hire will vary. The primary responsibilities revolve around forming consistent brand messaging and deciding upon a unique and identifiable voice, style, and pitch across various distribution channels.

From raising brand awareness to attracting a relevant audience to your website, boosting social media presence and engagement, generating leads, and building brand loyalty – content marketing drives all the growth efforts for your brand. When done effectively, it can help you:

  • Build positive brand awareness
  • Make your audience stick around for longer
  • Get better traction on social media
  • Gain more trust of your audience than ever
  • Generate qualified leads
  • Improve conversion rates
  • Boost business visibility with SEO
  • Position your brand as an authority
  • Cultivate loyal brand fans

While content marketing is a broad role with numerous areas of expertise involved, it’s vital to thoroughly understand your company’s current marketing goals and the related requirements. In this blog, we will dive deep into the step-by-step approach to hiring a Content Marketer.

What is The Role of a Content Marketer?

A Content Marketer must be deeply passionate about telling your brand’s story to the world. The objective is to educate and nurture the target audience to establish brand authority using thought-leadership and drive more people to buy from you.

As a candidate is expected to be a mediator between the brand and the target audience, they are primarily responsible for planning, creating, and sharing valuable content to grow their company’s awareness and engagement to bring more business.

To be more specific, the role of a Content Marketer requires a perfect blend of creativity and attention to detail in an individual. It’s a balancing role, as they need to ensure creating content that resonates and strengthens business relationships, using strategies that position your business as authentic and problem-solving.

Take a look at the core responsibilities of a Content Marketer that most businesses expect them to take over:

  • Research and Competitor Analysis: The first and foremost step to creating a content marketing strategy is effective initial research. It not only helps a Content Marketer understand the nuances of the industry through competitor analysis but also study and understand the target audience thoroughly.
  • Building Content Marketing Plans: Once the competitor research and target audience analysis is done, a Content Marketer needs to work on the different plans for all the business objectives, targeted channels, segments of the audience, and the bigger marketing strategy. A content marketing plan typically consists of:
  • Specific goals along with a pre-decided timeline
  • Various channels to be targeted for content distribution
  • Types of content to be created
  • Budget for the entire staff, outsourced services, and paid promotion (Collabs and Ads)
  • Creating Editorial Calendar: Creating, managing, and maintaining a content calendar is one of the most crucial responsibilities of a Content Marketer. It is a centralized visual document that enables effective collaboration among the marketing team and helps Content Marketers ensure on-time production and delivery.
  • Content Creation: Once the strategy and calendar have been approved by relevant stakeholders, Content Marketers need to do the on-ground work. This task usually depends on the scale of your company and content marketing strategy. Suppose an organization already has a set of writers, then the Content Marketer doesn’t need to create content by themselves.
  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO): Producing quality content that educates your target audience and resonates with them, isn’t enough. You need to optimize your content creation to make it search engine-friendly. While most companies need a dedicated SEO specialist for keyword research and planning, Content Marketers need to closely collaborate with them and should be well-versed in the basics of SEO.

While the practices discussed above are primary responsibilities of a Content Marketer, they also need to be proactive with

  • Content editing and ensuring adherence to a certain style guide    
  • Continous publishing and distributing content
  • Measuring and analyzing performance

How to Hire a Content Marketer: Step-By-Step?

Content marketing has become the key to driving growth for businesses. Unlike a few years ago, it’s not possible now to get away with a one-person team for content marketing. You need deeply trained individuals for specialist roles.

Let’s now dive into the step-by-step approach of hiring a Content Marketer. But before you even source your first candidate, you should have a clear expectation of the skillset and experience to look out for top content marketing candidates.

Top Must-Have Skills in a Content Marketer

Apart from having relevant industry experience, a good Content Marketer must possess the following skills.

  1. Excellent Writing Skills

A Content Marketer’s prior skillset should be writing excellent attention-grabbing content. From long-form blog posts to website copy, ad copies, social media content, video scripts, emails, newsletters, e-books, whitepapers, and more – a Content Marketer should be able to adapt to the business’s specific requirements and create quality content.

  1. Audience Research

Identifying user behavior is vital for framing the story in the right direction. So a Content Marketer must know how to identify and analyze the needs and pain points to develop a buyer persona. User research can be performed through social listening, relevant communities, in-person calls with customers, analyzing sales call recordings, and more.

  1. Keyword Research

Creating valuable thought-leadership content isn’t enough. Researching the right set of keywords is an essential skill to further educate your target audience on the Whys, Hows and Whats of your business, and have your website rank on Google.

  1. Data-oriented Content

Content that’s not backed by relevant data points does not build enough trust. Experienced content marketing professionals would always prefer data over hollow claims. No doubt that only data doesn’t help a content piece succeed, but it’s essential..

  1. Project Management, Planning, and Publishing –

A Content Marketer is also expected to break down and analyze the pain points to turn keyword research into content ideas. So a professional must be able to identify and solve content gaps.

Further, they must know how to create a content calendar, decide the different types of content, and choose relevant platforms to publish and schedule marketing campaigns.

  1. Content Promotion

Creating a valuable content piece, for example - an ebook, isn’t enough. Your content marketing team needs to promote it proactively for bringing enough attention and engagement.

  1. Performance Analysis

Setting up goals and plans is one thing, but continuously executing, measuring, and analyzing content performance is another. A Content Marketer should always be monitoring key performance parameters to figure out the upcoming plans with the necessary updates required.

Not to forget - stakeholders and marketing heads need the performance reports regularly. So Content Marketers must be able to collect and comprehend all the data to make it worth presenting.

Step 1: Create a Candidate Persona

Let’s sort out the priorities first, and decide the type of content marketing candidates you want to recruit. From exceptional research skills to storytelling, communication skills, relationship building, audience engagement, and more capabilities must be comprehensively considered. Identify and break down the skill requirements for Content Marketers:

  • What are the educational qualification criteria for the role?
  • How many years and what type of work experience do you want in candidates?
  • What are the specific skill sets you’re looking for?
  • Which industry experience would you primarily prefer?
  • Are there any tools your candidates should be hands-on with?
  • What are some personality traits that will fit your company?
  • Where do they look for a new job?
  • What are their career and life goals?

Forming a candidate persona by answering all these questions would ensure you are not shooting in the dark while sourcing candidates. Further, it helps you determine the traits of the ideal candidate, and plan your sourcing and recruitment strategy further.

Step 2: Document the Role Requirements and Decide on Your Recruiting Process

Next step is determining your role requirements suiting primarily to organizational needs and business goals. A content marketing professional is expected to own the entire content strategy, creation, and distribution. But what about your business’s unique requirements?

You might need someone comfortable with frequently creating long-form content pieces like blogs, ebooks, or whitepapers, or creating engaging video content based on your industry trends.

Talk to various relevant stakeholders for seeking the complete detailed company requirements for the role.

Before you enter the recruitment funnel, outline your talent acquisition process. Identify various strategies, channels, and other informational insights you would need – and maintain a collaborative document.

As you update the tactics and tweak your recruitment process for meeting hiring requirements optimally – keep your document up to date.

Step 3: Prepare a Content Marketing Job Description

Once you have finalized the role requirements with respect to your current content marketing goals and team, you can start sourcing candidates. Preparing the job description is the first task you’ll need to do.

Here are the necessary components you must have in your job description:

  • Job Title: The position you’re looking to fill. For example - Content Marketing Specialist or Content Marketing Manager.
  • Roles & Responsibilities: An outline of the candidate’s day-to-day activities. From ideation to implementation and the impact on the organization, everything should be covered.  
  • Skill Requirements: Skills and abilities a candidate must have to perform the job successfully.
  • Perks and Benefits: The compensation details, perks of the job, and any other benefits.
  • About the Company: Why should a candidate consider working with your company?

Content Marketer Job Description Template


The job of a Content Marketer is to perform competitor research, create user persona, and write plagiarism-free content for blog articles, social media, and the company website. They need to stay updated on the latest SEO techniques.


  • Develop, write and deliver persuasive copy for the website, email marketing campaigns, sales collateral, videos, and blogs
  • Build and manage an editorial calendar; coordinate with other content crafters to ensure standards
  • Measure impact and perform analysis to improve KPIs
  • Include and optimize all content for SEO
  • Contribute to the localization of processes and content to ensure consistency across regions
  • Review and implement process changes to drive operational excellence


  • Proven content marketing, copywriting, or SEO experience
  • Working knowledge of content management systems like WordPress
  • A well-maintained portfolio of published articles, blogs, copy, etc
  • Proven experience of working under pressure to deliver high quality output in a short span of time
  • Proficiency in all Microsoft Office applications, Google Suite
  • Fluency in English or any other required language

Soft Skills

  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Excellent writing and editing skills
  • The ability to work in a fast-paced environment
  • The ability to handle multiple projects concurrently
  • Strong attention to detail and the ability to multi-task projects and deliverables

Step 4: Source Candidates

Once you have the tailored job description in hand, it’s now time to do the groundwork and source candidates. Create an attractive job post to promote your job across job boards and social channels.

  • Begin with what to expect from the role at your company?
  • Why should candidates apply for the position?
  • Highlight the growth opportunities
  • State the company vision and mission
  • Briefly describe the recruitment process

Prepare an impactful job post and also execute paid job ad campaigns if required. The next step would be promoting your jobs on various job boards and hiring platforms. You can leverage the following platforms for hiring Content Marketers:

  • LinkedIn
  • Indeed
  • Instahyre
  • ZipRecruiter
  • Monster
  • GlassDoor
  • CareerBuilder

Not to forget - almost 3/4th of the workforce includes passive candidates, so you cannot miss out on passive talent sourcing as well. Reach out to qualified candidates on communities, LinkedIn, Twitter, and even Facebook to offer them suitable opportunities.

Step 5: Evaluate Candidates and Interview Shortlisted Ones

Once you have filtered candidates based on their experience and skills listed on their profile, it’s time to evaluate them deeply. Ask them to create a content strategy for your website, along with a value-adding content piece like a small blog. The topic of the article must fall within the scope of the strategy.

Interview the candidates whose profiles got shortlisted. Keep in mind the parameters covering skills, relevant experience, and personality traits of candidates.

Step 5: Make the Hire

Reach out to selected Content Marketers and communicate about the compensation.

Further, extend your offer letter to all the candidates who have been selected. In the case of passive sourcing, extend to only those who were aligned with you on the compensation and are willing to move forward.

Ensure having a deadline for the joining date and mention the necessary documents required by your recruiting team.

  • Get the required documents and set up the offer agreements with candidates
  • Organize an orientation session for the onboarded candidates
  • Introduce them to the entire team and the marketing teams they will be working with
  • Guide the new candidates about your company management tools and communication channels
  • Provide candidates with forms for benefits and perks like Health Insurance.

Supercharge Your Hiring for Content Marketer with Nurturebox

Inbound candidate sourcing doesn’t work effectively anymore. Do you also find challenges in closing quality candidates through job posts even after spending on ads?

Don’t worry, passive candidate sourcing can be an optimal solution for hiring top content marketing candidates.

Nurturebox is a one-stop talent sourcing and engagement platform which is powered by automation. Here’s how you can source product managers from LinkedIn using Nurturebox:

  • Install the Nurturebox Chrome plugin and sign up.
  • On your LinkedIn profile, start sourcing Content Marketers with boolean searches stating the required experience from targeted locations and including other criteria
  • Add the qualified candidates to your sourcing campaign pipeline with just a click
  • Automate the candidate engagement through email, Whatsapp and LinkedIn direct messages for reaching out and nurturing candidates at scale.

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