Recruiting on LinkedIn is about to become more challenging for many recruiters. Boolean search and candidate sourcing expert Irina Shamaeva recently posted an article explaining that “Boolean is going away in Recruiter Lite.” Those who want to harness the power of Boolean in LinkedIn will reportedly have to upgrade to a full LinkedIn Recruiter account, which is much more expensive and doesn’t use what many sourcers would view as full Boolean search.
At the moment LinkedIn’s product pages for Recruiter and Recruiter Lite don’t mention Boolean, or a lack thereof, explicitly. Instead, Recruiter simply states that you can “create a search based on your ideal candidate” while Recruiter Lite only indicates that there are over 15 filters one can use to find candidates. This would indicate that Boolean, or at least LinkedIn’s version of it, is being phased out of some parts of the system.
Why would LinkedIn do this? One explanation is that the company believes its search functionalities will be more intuitive and deliver better results if they simply run on filters and can be run by those with no understanding of Boolean search strings. Another could be that LinkedIn wants to push even further into separating its network from the rest of the internet, making it easier for it to be the one-stop-shop for talent acquisition. Regardless of the reasons for this change, it can potentially make search for candidates more difficult for some recruiters.
Fortunately, LinkedIn, while a great tool, is not the only source for candidates. Talented people are spread across a broader range of websites and networks than you might think. The loss of Boolean on LinkedIn will simply mean that some recruiters will need to expand the scope of their searches, with Google probably being the primary search engine they use. For those who are interested in improving their Boolean search skills Irina Shamaeva is holding a workshop on “Sourcing Without LinkedIn” that we can definitely recommend.
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