Discovering talent through Boolean search on LinkedIn

Ever heard of Boolean search? It could be the answer to your recruitment needs.
18 July 2018

Save costs, speed up recruitment and utilize the technology there to help you. Source: Diabluses/Shutterstock

In an ideal world, it’s easy to find the right man for the job(s) your organization offers.

But ask your human resources team about recruitment and they’ll tell you what a challenging task it is to find suitable candidates for open positions at your firm.

HR professionals use various methods to scan the internet and find the right talent, but amongst them all, one method stands out. Boolean searches on LinkedIn.

Using Boolean logic, recruiters can log into their LinkedIn accounts and zero-in on talent that is most suited to the role they have to offer. The biggest advantage? It’s free.

In today’s day and age, recruiters can’t be lax about finding the next batch of young leaders to join their business. Posting an ad on a jobs portal isn’t enough because they hardly yield the best results.

And while it might not be time to wave goodbye to online jobs boards altogether, leveraging more advanced solutions such as LinkedIn’s Boolean search will help you find the people who can help your business make a dent in the universe. Quickly.

If you haven’t heard of Boolean, it might seem a little complex at first. However, it is a really simple solution and can help you quickly narrow down on candidates you really ought to get in touch with.

To get started, you need to combine operators (in capitals) such as ‘AND,’ ‘NOT’, and ‘OR’, with your keywords to eliminate irrelevant search results and find LinkedIn candidates who match your company’s needs.

Try “founder OR CEO” and you will get results of people with one or the other in their profiles. Try “manager NOT assistant” and you will get only managers.

You can even combine a few terms by using brackets like “manager NOT (recruitment OR HR)” for results of those in management roles outside of recruitment and HR.

Searching through LinkedIn for the right candidate will be much easier. Source: Rawpixel/Unsplash

If there is a specific phrase or job title you want to see in someone’s profile you can search by putting quotation marks around the term.  Be careful only to use standard quotation marks otherwise LinkedIn is unlikely to recognize them.

You can be as specific as you like. The more specific you are, the more likely you will be presented with the kind of candidate your business needs.

However, remember when using Boolean that stop words such as “by”, “with” and “in” are not used.

You should also bear in mind that your profile is also important when actually approaching the candidates and opening yourself up to be found on LinkedIn.

Don’t forget that prospective employees are using keywords to proactively search for you too!

Be sure both your own profile and your company’s are regularly updated, full of buzzwords, and both engaging and professional.

The most advantageous part of Boolean search is that you don’t need a premium LinkedIn account to use it. However, if you do have one, you’ll have more tools to narrow down your search results further.