Are you looking for top talent to fill an open position in your company? Traditional job advertisements can yield poor results and may overlook passive candidates who are not actively job-seeking. That’s why many companies are looking within their own ranks for job candidate referrals. Employee referral strategies have become an integral part of the sourcing process for many companies. Here’s why.

Your Current Employees Are Your Best Source of Referrals

Current employees know your company from the inside. They also most likely know someone who can fill the positions you have open right now. That’s why many businesses are increasingly looking to their own employees for information about who might be right for the job.

  • Employees know the candidate’s true skill set. It’s easy to pad your resume or give an interviewer the impression that you have more advanced skills than you really do. Employees likely know the actual skills of the person they have in mind for the job and can suggest people who are truly qualified.
  • Employees know the culture of your company. Employees who leave a new job within the first year often cite workplace conflicts as part of their reason for leaving. Current employees have a good feel for how your company works on a day-to-day basis, and they can help potential job candidates determine whether the job would be a good fit.
  • Employee referrals can help reduce recruitment costs. Because the candidates referred by employees often prove to be better quality than those who respond to traditional job board ads, many companies have been able to offset recruitment costs even after considering any incentive programs offered for referrals.

How to Encourage Employees to Participate

If you want to make the most of an employee referral program, you need to make it worthwhile for your workers to participate:

  • Provide rewards and incentives. Incentives don’t always have to be monetary. Rewards and recognition can also be excellent ways to encourage people to provide referrals.
  • Make it easy. Give employees a way to refer people online by uploading resumes or providing contact information. Keep them apprised of open positions and let them know you value their contributions.
  • Consider an added incentive for quality referrals. One problem that occasionally surfaces is that employees suggest people who aren’t really qualified for the job in an effort to earn the incentive. One way to approach this problem is to provide an added incentive for employees if the candidate remains in the position for at least six months after hiring.

Employee referrals allow you to increase your network of contacts, making you aware of both active and passive candidates you may not have encountered otherwise. Take advantage of the pool of knowledge at your fingertips to help you find the best person for the job.

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