How to use employee referral hiring to attract top talent in a competitive job market

How to use employee referral hiring to attract top talent in a competitive job market

Hiring top, suitable talent is a priority for many companies, and one of the most effective ways of doing so is by leveraging employee referrals. Here, we discuss what employee referrals are and how your company can implement an employee referral program to attract top talent.

What is an employee referral program?

An employee referral program is a system where employees of a company can refer candidates for open positions within the company. The referring employee may receive a reward or incentive, such as a bonus or additional paid time off if the referred candidate is hired and completes a certain period of employment.

Employee referral programs can be an effective way for companies to source high-quality candidates, as employees may be more likely to refer people they know are qualified and will be a good fit for the company's culture. Additionally, referred candidates may be more likely to stay with the company longer as they already have a connection to the organization through the referring employee.

Employee referral programs can take many forms, depending on the company's goals and resources. Some programs may be open to all employees, while others may only be available to specific departments or employee groups. Some programs may have specific rules about the types of positions that can receive referrals, and there may be limits on the number of referrals an employee can make.

Using employee referrals to attract top talent

When hiring top talents in a competitive job market, employee referrals are one of the most powerful tools you have at your disposal. Employee referrals can be more cost-effective and time-saving than paying a recruiter to seek out top candidates. Plus, employee referrals tend to have higher retention rates and better alignment with the team dynamics. Attracting top talent in a competitive job market can be challenging, but there are several areas you can optimize in your employee referral program to attract the best candidates:

Offer incentives

Offering incentives is another way to encourage employees to refer the best candidates. Some programs offer cash incentives for successful referrals, while others may offer paid time off, career development opportunities, free lunches, or other benefits.

Make it super easy to refer

As the CEO of Airbnb once stated, people should be able to book a place on their site in just three clicks. Similarly, for whichever employee referral software or platform you use, ensure the UX is streamlined and employees can intuitively submit referrals in just a few clicks. Reducing these operational hurdles can significantly increase the participation of employees.

Make your employees feel valued

Employees would be much more motivated to offer referrals if they understand that their actions will be valued and appreciated. The first step in having a successful employee referral program is to make employees feel valued and part of the organization. Convey clearly that the hiring team values their opinions and reviews all their referrals seriously.

Make sure the position has competitive compensation and benefits

Top candidates look for top positions. It doesn’t matter if your employees have lots of high-quality connections; if the position isn’t attractive enough, these people may not be interested in applying. To attract the best talent, it's important to offer a position with a competitive compensation package relative to other companies in your industry. Top candidates want to work in a role with compensation that reflects and values the level of work they do. In addition to salary or equity, other benefits such as health insurance, retirement plans, and paid time off also matter. Offering flexible work arrangements, such as remote work, is also among the top perks that top talents look out for. Moreover, ensure you clearly define your company’s culture, values, and mission statement in the job posting to attract candidates that align with these dynamics.

Build your employee referral program with Boon

Boon is an AI-powered employee referral software that helps companies find top talent. Effortlessly build an employee referral program for staff to send referrals in under 30 seconds - no login or sign up required. Book a demo today!

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