Your Irresistible Employee Referral Program

Recruiting a new employee is never easy. There are many variables that must be accounted for before a candidate can be successful. You need to ensure they are; the right cultural fit, have the necessary experience, have the necessary soft and hard skills, will be productive in the work environment, and be of value to the business. 

It’s extremely difficult to find your recruitment soulmate.

It doesn’t simply come down to the skill of the recruiter, it also depends on the quality of the candidates that are available to you. The quality of the most suited applicant you receive is the maximum ‘quality’ you’ll be able to recruit. 

Job board posting is utilised by many organisations, and many social platforms have job posting abilities. You can post your job to platforms such as; Indeed, Seek, Linkedin and Facebook… However, by doing so you’re simply attracting the same crowd that every other business (including your competitors) is attracting! 

Let’s assume you have a team of employees who all get along swimmingly, are hard working, productive and intelligent.

…what’s stopping you from utilising their connections? 

Your employees can act as your personal posting boards! They’re your most valuable advertisers, promoters and stakeholders

The connections of your current employees are gold mines.


Their friends and connections will embody similar attributes to the employee, as people befriend people that exhibit similar values and interests… And who wouldn’t want to offer their bestie a great career opportunity!  

Your employee’s network enables your company to have quality candidates at your fingertips. 

However, internal referrals are difficult because without a functioning system and procedure in place, tracking which candidates are referrals and enticing employees to participate can be difficult. 

Although there is difficulty in creating and developing referral programs, the statistics outlining the business benefits of implementing one are too impressive to overlook.

I know many writers talk-the-talk, but I’m here to walk the walk, therefore, here’s a  few statistics to cemente my point (which is: YOU NEED an employee referral program). Internal referrals are:

  • 55% faster to hire than any career site
  • Save companies over $3,000 per employee!
  • 82% of employers believe employee referrals are the best source for generated the best return on investment 
  • Referrals have a retention rate of 45% after being employed for 4+ yrs, whilst other sources have a maximum tension of 25% over 2+ yrs

So… now that you’re convinced, what are the key features of an employee referral program? And how should it work? 

Ideally, your employee referral program should be integrated within your recruitment software. This allows you to manage and control employees, as well as candidates, from one location. 

Similarly to how you post a new position to a job board, there should be the option to post it to your internal referral board (for example; Referral+). The job description should include all the standard information, such as; job description, salary, start date. However, by posting it to your referral board you’re allowing your employees to distribute the position to their connections. 

In doing so, you reduce the cost of your advertisement. However, you can use a portion of the money you save on the advertisement to incentivise employees to share the position. Incentives can be in various forms, such as; cash, gifts, experiences, getaways… whatever your organisation decides to choose, you can leverage the incentive to promote shares. You can also create incentives for different levels!

For example, there can be an incentive for the employee if their referral;

  • Is interviewed
  • Gets the position
  • Makes it through 6 months probation

And so on… the control is in your hands! Your referral system must be customisable and flexible (we all love to get a bit creative…)

Once the job is posted to the referral board, your employees need to have ‘share’ capabilities! Your employee should easily have the ability to share to; social networks (LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter) and direct messaging (SMS, Email). Therefore, instantly connecting with their network! This encourages their connections to click on the job and easily apply. 

This function of the referral program is crucial, because if the ‘sharing’ takes a lot of effort and time it will deter your employees from participating (unless there is a big reward of course)… If the option isn’t readily available, and your employees have to copy and paste things, and sign in to different sites and so on.. let’s be real, ain’t nobody got time for that!

Through this application process, your referral program MUST have tracking capabilities! 

Once your employee shares the position to their platforms, the candidates that apply through those shares must be trackable. Otherwise, how do you know which employee is owed the incentive? 

Thus, your program must track the sources of all applicants. 

Additionally, your program must have reporting capabilities.

How are you going to track which employees have been given the gift they’re owed? No matter how many reminders you set on your iPhone, we both know you’ll still forget… similar to when you hit snooze six times! 

Keeping track of who’s been given what can be difficult and messy! Maybe someone gets the incentive twice and another doesn’t ever receive it!

Therefore, your program must generate reports. For example, you may make a data report based on;

  • Source of applicant
  • Interviews that came from Referral+
  • #N.o Employees that referred candidates 
  • Incentives Received/ Outstanding 

This reporting capability results in your organisation retaining and utilising information regarding the referral program.

You can determine the success of the program, and how many employees are sharing the referable jobs. If that statistic is low, it offers insight as to what you may need to do in order to improve the figure. Your reports will demonstrate how many referred candidates are successful, therefore displaying the benefits of the program to your business. 

All of the above features and capabilities are a necessity if you plan to successfully implement and efficiently utilise a referral program.

Sounds like a dream, doesn’t it? I hate to pinch you (virtually, not physically), but your dream referral program is almost here… Everything you need, and more. 

MyRecruitment+ is constantly updating and introducing new features with the intentions of enhancing your talent acquisition, recruitment and onboarding process.

We’ve noticed the need for a self-service, efficient referral system that can be integrated within your current HRM systems, so… we’ve developed just that. 

Stay tuned for the release of Referral+, and get in touch if you have any queries.