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Talent Leadership

Why a talent CRM should be at the center of your recruiting tech stack

Lauren Shufran

Lauren Shufran

Content Strategist

Posted on

December 14, 2022

Historically, when it comes to recruitment, many companies have made do with an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) and manual spreadsheets. But given all the work that now goes into recruiting candidates before they even apply, this solution is no longer enough. Today’s recruitment takes a more refined, long-term approach, beginning with nurturing leads—sometimes for months before a candidate expresses interest in joining your organization. But to do this properly, recruiters can’t be siloed in their own workflows, keeping private notes, and not collaborating with the other members of the hiring team.

Luckily, there’s a solution. A candidate relationship management (CRM) system provides a single source of truth where all your talent information is stored, tracked, and analyzed. It improves the recruitment experience for your talent team by allowing them to automate many of their tedious and repetitive processes, freeing them up to provide a more personalized experience to candidates. Talent CRMs offer an evergreen solution to the constantly-changing tech landscape, offering integrations that further automate business processes and speak to other core platforms. Simply put, a talent CRM is the gold standard in recruiting. And in today’s hypercompetitive candidate-driven market, you can’t afford not to centralize around one of these platforms. Here’s just a few benefits to expect after implementing a talent CRM: 

Personalized recruitment experience

Today’s job candidates expect a personalized recruitment experience—and talent CRMs deliver on that expectation. The individual experience begins at the very first outreach, where a recruiter gauges the candidate’s interest in the open position. Any personal comments can be logged into the CRM instead of having to keep these details in spreadsheets. The next time someone else on the team reaches out, they’ll be able to see the candidate’s entire history with the team, and pick up the conversation right where it was left off. This level of personalization shows candidates yours is a company that cares—and that remembers the little things. 

“What’s high on the list of candidate frustrations is getting an email about the same job from three recruiters at the company. I didn’t want to fix things after the fact. Gem ensures candidate relationships are preserved and respected across the entire team. One way this happens is our ability to follow up on a colleague’s initial outreach. I’ll often mention it: ‘I know we reached out in June; here’s what’s changed since then.’”

- Maisha Cannon, Senior Facilitiator, Recruiting Programs @ Roblox (formerly Manager of Global Talent Sourcing @ Procore Technologies)

Top CRMs like Gem offer even more opportunities to create a unique experience. They allow you to automate certain candidate interactions, like enrolling talent in personalized follow-up sequences or long-term nurture campaigns where you can share company information geared toward that person’s potential position or interests. They allow you to set due dates for future follow-up and tag co-workers to help understand context. This further builds your talent brand, creates a positive candidate association, and leads to more conversions. Gem also allows you to send messages “on behalf of” (“SOBO”) a company leader, such as a VP or the hiring manager, to exponentially increase your conversion rates.


“When it’s done well, Gem’s SOBO feature is super advantageous. We use it for director and senior manager roles. And I’ll typically personalize it. I recently combed my network and gave a recruiter 20 or so referrals. And I was like, This person I met at a conference; this person I’ve had multiple conversations with; so when you reach out on behalf of me, please say this. When someone responds, I get a copy of that reply. And then I get to have a back-and-forth with them.”

- Arquay Harris, VP of Engineering @ Webflow

Streamlined processes in a single source of truth 

Talent CRMs save your recruiters time by automating tedious processes like candidate information entry and by streamlining prospect searches—on top of the automated follow-up mentioned above.

When a sourcer finds a good match for an open role, a top CRM will automatically pull the prospective candidate’s information from that site and save it directly into the talent pool. That talent pool acts as a personally-cultivated shortlist of candidates for current and future roles. Sourcers can also perform advanced searches within their talent pool whenever a new position becomes available (who were the silver medalists with great scorecard scores the last time this role was open?), exponentially cutting down on search times by starting with previously-qualified talent.

“When a req comes in from a client, I source directly from Gem—talent I’ve already looked at, vetted, and in some cases screened—and queue up my outreach from right within the platform. It’s like having my own more robust, more specialized, more streamlined LinkedIn.”

- Alyssa Garrison, Co-founder, Techmate Talent / Talent @ Linear

Candidate rediscovery 1

Once they’ve started a conversation with a prospective candidate, sourcers can send all communications directly from the CRM instead of constantly checking LinkedIn, Indeed, email, and SMS. This streamlines communication efforts by letting hiring teams perform all their work within one app. It also ensures recruiters never miss a message from a top candidate, and that candidates never fall through the cracks. Gem’s CRM ties together your top-of-funnel work with your ATS stages, giving you a 360-degree view of every candidate—wherever they are in process. 

candidate profile

Improved collaboration and reporting

A talent CRM also improves recruiters’ collaboration with other internal teams, like hiring managers and leadership. The CRM becomes the single source where all candidate information is stored and managed. It’s accessible by anyone with a login, so other teams can get updates on their applicants’ recruitment status without having to meet with a talent team member. 

With a consolidated view of all active candidates, for example, Gem’s Talent Pipeline equips recruiters to come prepared for their weekly hiring manager syncs. Recruiters can offer quick digestible snapshots of their pipelines and then narrow the focus of discussion by filtering for the stages they want to show. Thanks to Gem’s color-coding, users can also quickly flag who needs immediate attention and message candidates (or take other actions on them) directly from the kanban board view, holding the hiring team accountable on the spot and upgrading your candidate experience. 

Gem Talent Pipeline
Talent Pipeline Dropdown

“Gem’s color-coding alerts me to who’s waiting on feedback, whom we need to take action on. I see that 5 candidates have made it to the reference check. I see how many days it’s been since our last touchpoint with every candidate. At a glance, I have an immediate sense of how an open role is trending.”

- Kyle Ijichi, Senior Technical Recruiter @ Carta 

A good CRM’s data dashboard provides at-a-glance insights on team and individual performance, number of job openings, hiring goals, pipeline composition, and more. These dashboards can be customized to reflect your company’s unique KPIs, so leaders and other stakeholders can quickly view team progress. Insights like the number of qualified candidates and candidate demographics by stage help you quickly identify any sticking points and quickly solve them.

Executive summary dashboard

Finally, reporting highlights and hiring updates can be automatically sent to leaders, hiring managers, or other interested parties at whatever cadence they prefer. This keeps all involved team members apprised of candidate and team status without recruiters taking time away from their jobs to update them.

“I’m using Gem for a daily bird’s-eye view and to pull a weekly report for our exec team. I use Gem for all of our reporting— recruiter activity at the top of the funnel, passthrough rates, forecasting.”

- Erica Law, Head of Technical Talent @ DispatchHealth (formerly Recruiting Manager @ Mindstrong Health)

Integrated with ATS and other platforms

Recruitment CRMs aren’t designed to replace the ATS; instead, they should integrate with one another to give you a complete view of your entire recruitment lifecycle. ATSs are undeniably beneficial at showing you where each applicant is in your hiring process. Their greatest shortcoming is they only give you visibility into candidates who have already applied for the position.

A talent CRM, on the other hand, tracks warm leads long before they’ve applied. It allows you to design custom long-term nurture campaigns for prospective candidates. Talent can receive preset messages or emails at a chosen cadence, maintaining the candidate-recruiter relationship even if candidates aren’t currently looking for a new role. All of these messages and interactions are tracked in the CRM, so when talent does become interested in a new role, the recruiter has all the context to begin that conversation. CRMs pull application status information directly from your ATS, so you can keep track of every candidate’s recruitment steps directly from the platform, further streamlining your tech stack. Top CRMs even integrate with human capital management (HCM) systems to transition a candidate to an employee after they accept an offer.

“At Affirm, our ATS is deeply integrated with Gem. So I can track everything—top, middle, bottom of the funnel, you name it. Whatever I need to know—pipeline conversion by department, by sourcer, time-in-stage, time to fill—it’s there. It’s a complete game-changer.”

- Emily Stellick, Head of Global Sourcing @ Affirm

Centralize your talent tech stack with Gem

Building your talent strategy around a core CRM isn’t optional. The CRM is the recruiting solution of the future and the necessary next step for any talent team looking to grow. Gem’s CRM gives your entire team the efficiency and visibility to deliver a personalized candidate experience, while its performance dashboards ensure your team is reaching its potential.

Get in touch with us to learn more about our talent CRM, or experience it firsthand by requesting a demo.


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