Secrets of Successful Employee Referral Programs

March, 11 2016

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Written By
Brooke Torres


Everyone in hiring and management is excited about referral programs right now—and especially since we've all heard that 85% of the workforce is open to hearing about other opportunities. But most companies aren’t where they want to be with how many people they bring in through their current employees. Below are three ways real recruiters and hiring managers are getting more out of their referral programs than the competition. If you want to get more insight, check out the rest of our free ebook below.

Provide specific training on how, exactly, your team can mine their contacts.

“Companies don’t ever get the max that they want out of their referral programs. I would go down and sit with an engineer. I’d say ‘Pull up your LinkedIn profile — show me everyone you’re connected with. Tell me about this guy. Okay, let’s send this guy an email.’” –Michael Burns, Founder, MickTec

Offer better incentives.

“Beyond our standard bonuses for anyone who makes a referral that turns into a hire, we hold a monthly raffle. Anyone who referred someone to an open position that got to the interview phase is in the running for these, and we do a prize for the previous month. We given away $2k in plane tickets, up to $2k for any bike you want, $2.5k in Spring dollars, $2k for Spring unique experiences, like getting to sit on the 50 yard line, getting to hang out with Rachel Zoe at her studio, or dinners.” -Lindsay Holmes, Recruiting Manager, Spring
“The incentives aren't big enough now. Here's what you should actually give: An extra week of vacation. If you refer five friends, we’ll vest one of your years faster. No one cares about that 5k bounty and they are not taught how to go to LinkedIn and do it.” –Michael Burns, Founder, MickTec

Tap into other networks you already have.

“Airbnb systematically tracks former candidates who refer future hires to the company. The most valuable lead-generators get $500 travel certificates. More than a dozen have done so.”–George Anders

Want more? Get the rest here:

Download Now: How to Revolutionize Your Hiring Strategy in 2016


Featured photo courtesy of Davide Ragusa, Unsplash
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