Ask any company what their number one source of quality hire is, and more likely than not, their response will be employee referrals. And, for the most part, it makes sense because your current A-players (hopefully) have at least one of two things: 1) an extensive network of likeminded people who are destined to fit in at your company or 2) solid judgment about when a potential referral just isn’t right for the job. Either way, including your people in the recruitment process shows you trust their judgment and are open to giving them some “control” over the future of the business and company culture.
Brand Champions –> Employee Referrals
The individuals within your company create and amplify your culture in a big way. And when you have top performers who are engaged and loyal, it makes sense to use these employee brand champions as a supplement to your current employee referral program (ERP). But how do you encourage them to get involved (after all, they’re busy getting results)?
3 Ways to Encourage Employee Referrals in a Busy Workplace
1. Make it easy. While encouraging your entire workforce to participate in your ERP is necessary, realistically, it’s the top performers who embody your company and its culture that you want on board. However, these are also the hardworking, overachieving individuals who are spending their time doing more important things, like impacting the bottom line. If you want these folks to send employee referrals, you have to make it quick and easy for them. Whether it’s a weekly reminder of all openings that they can easily forward on to their relevant connections or a social app that makes sharing a breeze, use the tools available to make it work for your team.
2. Make it fun. Gamification might be the next (or current) big thing, but if that’s too extreme for your ERP, at least consider adding a few elements that make it unique. While “fun” may not be the descriptor everyone would choose, social sharing and visible tracking of employee efforts are two ways to encourage participation. With so many active users on sites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, incorporating employee referrals into the mix may be a natural extension for some companies. Plus, those sending employee referrals are sure to wonder how they’re doing.
3. Make it rewarding… both in the literal sense and emotionally. Of course, monetary and other tangible rewards are a no-brainer for getting your people motivated, but don’t forget to remind them of the other benefits, as well. Not only are they playing an active role in the future of the company, they are highly engaged, highly valued members of your team.
These three steps are not the only ones that need to be considered. What other tips can you share for increasing quality employee referrals?