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McKenzie Stephens
Solutions Strategist

How Employee Referral Incentives Build Employee Engagement

Companies with a strong organizational culture thrive, which is why companies that value their culture recruit new hires based on both qualifications and best fit with organizational culture. Because their current employees reflect that culture, many organizations understand that candidates referred by staff are more likely to fit with their organizational culture.

And there’s an added benefit to looking at candidates recommended by staff. When companies formalize a candidate referral program, complete with attractive incentives, they also are creating a new opportunity for deeper employee engagement.


How Incentives Strengthen Referral Programs and Build Engagement:

1. Current employees understand organizational expectations and culture. This valuable knowledge means that current team members are some of the best sources when it comes to finding quality talent. Their insights can help managers save costs by shortening the recruiting phase by as much as ten days.

Once part of the company, internally referred employees are faster to train and become integrated into the workforce culture more quickly. For example, instead of turning to their managers with every question during onboarding, new hires have other contacts within the organization who not only can answer questions, but also can offer sound insights into how the company operates.

2. A structured approach to referrals builds employee engagement. Leveraging the power of an incentivized referral program enables companies to integrate the program into their employee engagement tactics. However, to achieve this, rapid response to employee referrals is critical. This reinforces the value of making referrals and motivates team members to continue, deepening employee engagement.

A structured approach to referrals enables this. Companies lacking a structured approach may fail to respond to referrals for weeks, or worse, not at all. Rather than building engagement, an unorganized referral program can build negative feelings toward the organization and lessen engagement.

3. Incenting employee referrals is easier than ever, thanks to technology. Easy-to-use Software as a Service (SaaS) platforms have recently become available. The best allow organizations to distribute rewards and incentives almost instantly. This rapid response to a successful referral is a key builder of employee engagement and supports the ongoing success of referral programs.

As HR technology becomes critical to organizational success, companies should seek partners that are solutions-focused and offer products that have the flexibility to respond to rapid organizational changes. Understanding how technology can support successful recruitment efforts, and also create deeper employee engagement, is critical.

Are you looking for a way to disburse and distribute rewards instantly? MIFunds is new technology from Marketing Innovators that rewards employees who participate in your referral program awards with the American Express Serve® pre-paid debit card. Disbursement for administrators is quick and efficient, and employees receive their referral award in a timely, secure, convenient fashion. To learn more about MIFunds, contact a Marketing Innovators solutions experts today.

Sources: Here is Why Employee Referrals are the Best Way to Hire, Paul Petrone, August 3, journal: Engaging Employees: Big Companies Need The Most Improvement, Anna Marie Mann and Becky McCarville, January 19, A New Wave of HR Technology is Disrupting the Market, Andre Bourque, May 21, 2015.