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6 Creative Ways to Generate Employee Referrals


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40% of all hires come from referrals, BUT only 7% of total applicants come in this way. Referred workers have a higher retention rate and are up to 30% less likely to quit their jobs. Having a solid employee referral program is a no-brainer asset for your recruitment success. Here’s 6 creative ways to generate more of them.


  • Mapping LinkedIn contacts.

    The average employee will have 150 contacts on LinkedIn– 100 employees translates to 15,000 contacts and possible candidates. Dedicate time to sit with key employees and review their LinkedIn connections. By digging deeply you will be surprised how much great stuff you can uncover. Start with past employers and alumni networks.


  • Sponsor a “Bring a Friend to Work Night."

  • There will need to be value beyond tours of the office. It may be a really cool speaker, advanced demo of a new product, a night of free beer or just a chance to network. The sky really is the limit, so get creative, but be smart about it. The goal is to have friends thinking, “Man, I wish I worked there.”


  • Create an Employee Networking Lunch Program.

  • Offer to select members of your team the ability to expense lunch so they can meet up with people in their personal business network and sing the praises of your company. To hold them accountable, ask them to bring back 2-3 takeaways from these meetings. This could be a resume, some more names of people to potentially recruit or even market data on relevant roles for which you are hiring.


  • Build a recruiting app. 

  • It’s a bold idea, but if you have the resources don’t dismiss it. The app can allow your team to easily capture names of people they interact with outside of work. It will help engage candidates and capture info while it’s fresh.



  • Create a Recruiting Playbook...

  • For employees that covers how to pitch the company. Include quick bulleted points that are memorable and valuable. Also have “personalized” template messaging that your team can access and use as needed to post to social media. Create different messaging for different channels.


  • Provide Recruiting Cards.

  • These can be handed out on the spot when an employee has a positive interaction with someone. Say they meet a really helpful customer service rep at the Apple store for example. Or they can just be something different than a regular business card to use at events. These cards should have some key intriguing points that will drive someone to look at what you have to offer.




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