This post discusses the part the employee referrals plays in the Google hiring process.
Referral bonuses are typically an extrinsic motivator, but Google found that Googlers were making referrals for intrinsic reasons. The dollar amount of the referral made no difference, whether is was $2K or $10K. Referrals were only contributing to 5% of those hired. What mattered? What was the difference in referral rate AFTER Google changed their practice?
- Google drastically reduced the number of interviews each candidate went through
(7 months was way too long). A more typical timeframe should be 45-120 days max!
- White glove service for referrals, a call within 48 hours and the referring Googler is provided with weekly updates on the status of their candidate.
- Get VERY specific on the the type of talent you need. For example, "Who is the best developer in the Ruby programming language?"
- Less focus on hiring inbound candidates. Google rebuilt their staffing team to focus on passive candidates, those happily employed at other technology companies.
Note: This is a TIME intensive process and often there is not enough bandwidth at companies with recruiters doing HR work, team meetings, on-boarding etc, coaching, etc.
- If your company can't invest in this approach internally you might consider the "right 3rd party recruiter" that mirrors the strategic approach you want to take. A highly experienced recruiter will tightly screen and vet qualified "passive candidates" or those already happily employed but always interested in a great opportunity. Partnering with a top notch recruiter can lead to more effective hiring and increased productivity.