7 Tactics to Utilize Referral Programs for Tech Recruiting

By Ray O’Donnell

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Have you considered using referral programs for tech recruiting? If not, maybe it’s time you should.

Hiring has become quite challenging over the years, and it is even more challenging for the tech industry. 

According to a recent report, the unemployment rate in the tech sector has fallen to 1.8%. Despite the drop, companies have struggled to find the right talent for their business even after implementing the best recruitment strategies.

The inability to hire the right talent means that tech companies are unable to execute projects on time. It also hurts a company’s financial projections and its ability to reap the maximum benefits from its investments. Besides talent hire and financial projections, there are other business formation essentials that may affect your tech company’s ROI. Here’s a quick checklist by Small Business HQ.

Launching referral programs for tech recruiting is a great way for tech companies to ensure that they hire the right people for their organizations.

How do you make the best use of referral programs for tech recruiting?

We have compiled a list of 7 proven tactics to utilize referral programs to enhance the results of your tech recruiting.

Read on to learn more.

7 Amazing Tactics to Make Referral Programs for Tech Recruiting More Effective

Employee referrals is a proven recruiting tactic used by many companies, which leverages current employees to reach out to and identify potential candidates. 

Establishing referral programs for tech recruiting can help hiring managers find, screen, and acquire talent a lot faster. Not to mention, employees that come through referrals tend to stick around for longer.

Here are some tactics to make your referral programs more effective when hiring for tech roles.

1. Involve the New Hires

New hires are usually pretty excited and eager during their first few weeks on the job. Capitalize on this excitement to find potential candidates who they think would be a good fit for your company.

Case in point, PURE.

Image via Instagram

PURE is an insurance company in the US that has seen remarkable success with its referral programs. The company follows a “Don’t waste time” approach, which is evident in its onboarding process.

Recruiters ask new hires during onboarding if they know of someone who would fit the organization. As a result, the recruitment team gets several recommendations in just a short period of time.

PURE may not be a tech company, but this idea of involving new hires can be easily replicated by all tech companies. Not to mention, it will help engage new hires, improving your employee retention rate in the long run.

2. Host Recruitment Events

Salesforce offers one of the most popular CRM software in the world, and most companies use it as their preferred lead generation software.

The company also aces the referral program game by making it super fun.

Salesforce frequently hosts a get-together called Recruitment Happy Hours where employees, including new hires, can invite potential candidates from their social circles.

Image via Instagram

Organizing such events can be a great way for employers to get acquainted with potential employees in a no-pressure environment. It is also a great way for employees to unwind and bond with each other outside of work.

3. Make Your Incentives Attractive

Offering a lucrative reward increases the likelihood of receiving a referral. Attractive incentives make your referral programs for tech recruitment even more effective.

Consider taking a cue from Intel.

Image via Twitter

To solve its employee diversity problem, Intel came up with a creative solution. Intel’s employee referral program offered double referral bonuses for employees who refer a female, minority, or veteran candidate.

Getting twice the amount for a referral is a great incentive for employees to refer other suitable candidates.

4. Turn to Social Media Platforms

Social media, without a doubt, is a potent medium. People turn to social media for information on a lot of things, from the best accounting software to website builders.

Have you ever thought of using social media for your referral programs for tech recruiting?

Accenture has a unique employee referral program that uses social media to make it more effective. 

The company allows its candidates to join its “Get Referred” program. All that a candidate needs to do is connect their social media account, preferably LinkedIn or Facebook, to the company website.

The website then scans their account and comes up with a potential list of Accenture employees that the candidate may know. These existing employees can then serve as a referee for the candidate.

Implementing a similar approach could facilitate the quick assimilation of new hires in your organization because it engages them, right from the time they were just a potential candidate.

And don’t forget to add a monetary incentive to further incentivize your employees to participate.

Image via Accenture

5. Ask Questions

Let’s say you need information on the best video editor for TikTok. What is the first thing you do? You probably do a Google search and read its reviews.

In fact, Google reviews are so important for online success that most businesses embed Google reviews on their website.

Google has been a pioneer in a lot of things. When it comes to referral programs, you can trust it to do things differently.

Google’s employee referral programs are pretty simple and straightforward. Its key to success lies in the fact that Google likes to directly ask its employees basic questions like, “Who’s the best analytics person you know?” or “Who’s the best product person you know?”

Image via Google

The purpose of these pointed questions is that they force employees to think long and hard about any potential candidates they may know who would be a great fit for the organization.

The recruiters sit down with employees to scour their social media profiles while asking them to remember the most relevant people. It is called the aided recall method.

When you ask your employees to refer candidates, they may refer someone without even thinking about whether they would be suitable for the role or not. This approach ensures that only suitable candidates get referred.

6. Give On-the-Spot Rewards

How do most referral programs for tech recruitment work? An employee refers a candidate. If the candidate gets selected and spends a specified amount of time in the organization, the employee gets a financial reward.

What if you offered on-the-spot rewards? Wouldn’t that make things more lucrative?

You can reward your employees for successful hires with Apple watches and iPhones. 

The idea is to find suitable rewards that your employees may find valuable and offer them on the spot to encourage more employees to refer potential candidates.

7. Offer Public Recognition

All employees want to be appreciated for the good work they do. Social recognition amplifies the effect by making it public. Praising your employees in public can significantly help to bring out the best in them.

Hewlett Packard understands this and has incorporated it into their referral programs for tech recruitment. The company publicly recognizes employees who bring successful hires.

Image via TalentLyft

Consider organizing events to recognize and honor employees who refer qualified candidates. Take it a step further and ask employees and new hires to leave reviews. 

You will get valuable insights into what’s working and what’s not working with your referral programs, and the organization in general.

Final Thoughts

Employee referral programs are incredibly important because they bring in qualified candidates. And, tech companies are always on the lookout for qualified candidates to join their teams.

Referral programs for tech recruitment also reduce overall recruitment costs. They streamline the hiring process and improve recruitment ROI.

Well-designed and well-managed employee referral programs boost morale and improve employee satisfaction. The biggest benefit is that referred hires tend to stay with the company longer.

We recommend using the above tactics for your referral programs for tech recruitment, and you will be able to improve your results in no time.

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