Employee Referral Program

Employee Referrals Provide Prospective Employees with Critical Skills

gehringj/E+/Getty Images

Want to tap into the power of an employee referral program? A referral program that emphasizes potential employee referrals from current employees is a method employers use to find superior employees. Employees are keen to refer their friends and associates to their current employer, if they are happy with their current employer.

They want to work with people whom they like and respect. They also want to work with associates whom they believe will get the job done.

And, they want their company to succeed. So referrals of great people contribute to their company's success and their job security.

Few employees are willing to put their own name and stamp of approval on an individual if they aren't convinced the referred person will do a great job. Current employees also have a solid picture of the organization's culture, the environment employers foster at work. They know which friends will fit.

You can ask employees for referrals for specific jobs or generally, to develop a pool of special, talented candidates before you need to hire for a specific position. You will find that your employees are willing and able to send employees your way.

In this age of online social media and social networking, a referral program has even broader potential to locate qualified candidates. 

The most important factor in expecting employee referrals to continue is that you provide speedy feedback to the referring employee.

Too often, in organizations, employee referrals are sorted into the current pile of resumes and treated the same as resumes that came in across the transom.

You need to treat employee referrals differently. They deserve special treatment and the referring employee deserves feedback about what you have decided about hiring the referred candidate.

Even letting the employee know that, while you have nothing currently available for the referral, you have placed the individual in your pool of candidates that you will consider for future openings, is crucial.

Rewards and Recognition for Employee Referrals

An employee referral program solicits the referral of qualified job candidates from current employees who know your workplace culture and understand your job requirements. With or without a referral bonus or incentive, a referral program is in your best interests for recruiting superior staff.

Successful employee referral programs range from programs that substantially reward employees for critical position referrals to referral programs that provide no incentives at all for an employee referral. Referral bonuses range from a token of appreciation to a $10,000 check for the right employee referral.

Other companies rely on building a company culture that encourages employee referrals so that employees get to work with great team mates. Recognition and appreciation are demonstrated to employees who send their organization qualified employee referrals.

Despite their hype and potential usefulness, many employee referral programs fail to attain their program goals: superior employee referrals.

You can find out more about what makes an employee referral program successful. You'll also see how to build a company culture that encourages employee referrals.

Also Known As: referral bonus, referral incentives, referral program