Employee referral programs not only translate to less time and effort spent recruiting, but they also are more likely to generate candidates who will be a great culture fit. Not to mention, including employees in the hiring process makes them feel more valued. (And the monetary incentives typically attached to these kinds of programs don’t hurt either.)
Long-term employees may be familiar with a program you have in place, but a friendly reminder of its existence and its requirements won’t hurt. Newer workers may have yet to learn about this initiative and may see it as an opportunity to prove themselves early on by introducing you to a superb candidate.
That’s where knowing how to write an employee referral program letter comes in. As you put together this document, you might assume everyone knows the rules. However, the reality is that even the more seasoned staff members may be unfamiliar with some of the company’s more intricate policies.
Needless to say, it’s never a bad idea to write an employee referral program letter that clearly communicates instructions for taking part in this program and also actively encourages participation.
How to Write an Employee Referral Program Letter
1. Consider tone. Everything from your opening salutation to your sign-off should sound friendly and approachable. Keep it on brand and in line with the company’s voice. You want people to feel engaged and compelled by your message, not alienated or surprised by the strangeness of it.
2. Drive home the value of your employees’ referrals and their opinions. Many people may not be familiar with such a program, so start by linking out to research that explains how and why employee referral programs yield great new hires. Then you can go on to praise the results of the employee referral program thus far and encourage everyone to consider participating. Don’t be shy about praise. Let your employees feel special. This will encourage them to take the time to find good potential hires for you.
3. Now it’s time to talk incentives. Though flattery may make your employees feel special, an incentive will truly encourage them to participate. If you can afford it, consider offering a cash incentive, and if you can’t, think about what other perks and benefits you can extend. Either way, when you write an employee referral program letter, make sure this information is clearly outlined toward the top of your letter.
4. Spell out the rules of engagement and the instructions for participating. This information should make up the bulk of your message, and it’s vital that it’s explicitly communicated in an easy-to-read format (consider using bullet points, for example). It’s also a good idea to review the rules and instructions for participating with your legal department before you write an employee referral program letter. Ask for the exact language to use. A miscommunication could land you in some legal hot water.
5. Speaking of which, it’s crucial to share names of team representatives who will act as resources throughout this process. This eliminates confusion and prevents you from answering countless questions outside of your domain. Besides, naming specific team members simplifies the steps for employees. If the task is easy, it’s more likely to be completed. Your best workers, therefore the employees most likely to introduce you to exceptional candidates, probably don’t have time to ask the wrong people for help.
6. Following that, write the requirements for the job position (or positions). Including the necessary attributes improves communication. Your employees know exactly what you need, and they can share this with their network. Sure, you could link to a job description; although, you risk your employees losing interest if you involve extra steps when you write an employee referral program letter. This section should include the years of professional experience desired, the type of work accomplished, as well as a comprehensive list of hard and soft skills.
7. Make it social. While it might seem obvious to you that a great way for employees to tap into their networks is to post your job opening on their social media pages, others may not be so quick to cotton on to this idea. For this reason, it’s never a bad idea to remind employees that it would be great if they could share the details via their Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. communities.
8. Now it’s time to edit your message. As you read over your work, look for possible legal snafus, anticipate questions from your employees, read over the bonus discussion, ask yourself if the offer sounds intriguing enough for your purposes, and, of course, look out for spelling and grammatical errors.
9. You sent the message. Now what? Wait a few days for referrals to come across your desk. If no one responds, ask a trusted colleague why this occurred. It’s okay to reach out again, but you will start to sound like a broken record if it becomes a pattern.