It’s all about technique (versus task) – How to Engage the Right Employees!
As unemployment rates inch down and the market heats up for top talent, most organizations will desperately seek ways to find/source candidates for their Critical/Difficult/Visible (CDV) positions.
At the top of everyone’s sourcing ‘tool kit’ are referrals from employees. Based on studies performed by industry experts, employee referrals are THE BEST SOURCE of quality new hires.
Referrals from employees typically cost less money to secure and the new employees outperform their peers on the job and stay longer with your organization. A well functioning employee referral program can generate 30%, 40%, and even 50% of total external hires!
And while I am an advocate of rewarding employees for referring a quality professional to the organization, I DO NOT believe that when the market heats up . . . you keep increasing the bonus to generate more referrals.
First off, I would hope that my engaged, top employees would refer candidates WITHOUT any financial rewards. Wouldn’t they do it to benefit their friend (better job/better organization) and their own company?
Secondly, if I have employees “holding out” for the special referral bonus tied to a CDV position, I probably have a whole other set of problems! I would wonder if the candidates they refer are going to be the quality I am seeking (i.e. birds of a feather flock together).
So how do you improve employee referrals for CDV requisitions by 50% without spending more money?
The secret is in your technique . . . not just the task at hand.
From my experience, the key to your success is dependent on three things:
- Engaging the right employees (without creating waste).
- Investigative Questioning.
We discuss these keys details in our Recruiter Academy Certified Recruiter Program.
In today’s blog, I will tackle some of the highlights of Engaging the Right Employees. In future blogs this month, I will discuss the keys to success with respect to Investigative Questioning and Timing.
Engaging the Right Employees!
With the explosion of social media, I have seen many new products and services aimed at pushing out your job opportunities via your employees through their social media outlets (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.).
Honestly, I struggle with these new tools for a couple reasons:
- For the most part, these tools don’t isolate who the message is going out to. Do I really want more referrals from poor performers who are likely to refer more unqualified, underperforming candidates? One of the biggest issues organizations face is managing the volume of unqualified candidates that apply to their organization. Many of these tools drive more unqualified applicants, not QUALITY, interested professionals.
- “Pushing” out opportunities to current employees doesn’t allow you to build rapport, understand an employee’s centers of influence, and effectively tap their network.
With that said, I think some of the target tools available through LinkedIn make sense, especially if you are a large organization.
So what are some of my recommendations?
- Only seek referrals from your Rock Stars. Leverage your managers to identify engaged, top performers. Some good questions for your managers include; “What employees are engaged?”, “Who are their top performers?”, and “Who has recently joined the company and is a top performer that I should network with?”
- White Glove Treatment! To maximize your referral source, go “old school” and meet with (or pick up the phone) and talk to these precious referral sources. Engage them. Build rapport. Let them know that you seek their advice per the recommendation of their manager. “Sue told me to talk to you about this need. She said you are a rock star within her group and that you would be a great person to network with.“
With Employee Referrals, more is not necessarily better. Minimize unqualified referral flow. Identify your target referral sources and maximize the encounter.
In the blog next week, I will discuss the Art of Investigative Questioning!
I hope you are having a Perfect Day!
LEAN Human Capital