Finding the right answers often takes asking the right questions.
With employee referral programs, the right questions can help you understand whether the program is helping you hire quality physicians and build a strong staff or is stagnating and serving no purpose.
Whether you’re considering a current program’s effectiveness or still deciding if a new program could benefit your recruitment strategy, answering these four questions can strengthen your referral program:
- What is the right incentive?
Determining the right reward can be a deciding factor between a program that motivates participation vs. one that hopes for it. Rewards are usually provided after a referred employee has been hired and stayed in the role for a set period of time.
Cash is a common choice, but there may be better options for your organization - whether it’s time off, a gift card to a local restaurant, a subscription to meal delivery or other services or the latest piece of trending tech. Another decision is whether all hired referrals receive the same reward or whether those for harder-to-fill positions should carry a greater reward.
- Where will employees submit referrals?
In addition to an intriguing reward, a referral program needs to be easy to use. The best process will differ for organizations depending on size and scope. Smaller practices might be able to manage with a process as informal as an email and form with HR tracking participation, while larger organizations might go as far as developing an online portal to facilitate and track submissions.
- How will you measure success?
Establishing goals and monitoring performance will help you know whether managing a referral program is worth the effort. Do you want to reduce time to hire? Are you seeking to have a higher number of qualified candidates? Are you wanting it to help with employee retention?
Define what you hope to accomplish - then track the program performance. If you’re not reaching your goals, it might be time to modify your program.
- How will you keep your program top of mind?
Rolling out an employee referral program is one thing; sustaining participation is another. Look for opportunities to remind the staff there’s a program in place. This might be as small as hanging a poster in a break room to adding a plug for the program at the end of a presentation to employees.
Also find ways to recognize referrers or successful hires made through the program. It’s the best way to remind staff that your organization has an employee referral program, peers are benefiting from it, and it works.