Crafting an Effective Employee Marketing Strategy for Stellar Referrals

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If your recruiting budget is $100,000 a year, where will you spend it? Many companies make the mistake of following the same playbook they used in the previous year. Hopefully, you were able to look at all your hires (and their first-year retention) and figure out what source they originated from. The majority of companies' top five sources are:

  1. Internal Talent- Talent you move up the ladder.
  2. Employee Referrals- People know people.
  3. Job Boards- Niche and general job boards.
  4. Your Career Website- It is hard to measure this since all your recruitment marketing should be pointed to this site.
  5. Past Employees- Boomerangs make great hires.

Missing from this list is social media. How can that be? It is missing because it is tough to measure it as a "source of hire." Unless you are a company like Google or Microsoft who, can tweet a job listing and get thousands of applications, your social media becomes your evangelist for your company and culture. It's not only your own Facebook, Twitter, and IG pages; it is everyone who works for you and can impact your recruiting success and potential candidates to apply for jobs.

Employee referrals are a goldmine for talent acquisition, bringing in candidates who are not only pre-vetted but are also likely to align with your company culture. To harness the full potential of employee referrals, you need to add an employee marketing strategy. Here are three key ways you can develop a strategy that encourages and empowers employees to become brand ambassadors.

Fostering a Positive Work Culture

The foundation of any successful employee marketing strategy is a positive work culture. When employees genuinely enjoy their work environment, they naturally advocate for the company. Prioritize employee well-being, provide growth opportunities, and create an inclusive atmosphere. Celebrate achievements, both big and small, and encourage open communication. A happy workforce is likelier to share their positive experiences on social media. If ten employees share a positive work experience and have 500 connections, your company employment brand will be put in front of a potential audience of 5,000 people!

Implementing a Structured Employee Referral Program

Develop a structured employee referral program that incentivizes employees to refer qualified candidates. Establish clear guidelines and rewards for successful referrals, ensuring that employees understand the benefits of participating. This could include monetary rewards, recognition, or even unique perks. There is great technology to manage the employee referral process that will make your life super easy. You can read this article to get the details.

Utilizing Internal Communication Channels

Leveraging internal communication channels is vital for spreading the word about job openings and the employee referral program. Utilize email newsletters, company-wide meetings, and internal collaboration platforms to keep employees informed about new opportunities. Highlight the benefits of employee referrals and use technology to make this fun and rewarding. Create engaging and shareable content about your workplace culture and success stories that employees can easily access and share. Companies who practice transparency with their job openings and often communicate with their current workforce get more applications and hires from this source. 

The bottom line is when employees are enthusiastic about their workplace, they naturally become advocates, making them an extension of your recruiting department without much additional cost. Spend the money on company culture, and the dividends will pay off hugely!

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