Jan 26, 2022

How to Refer Someone for a Job

Job referrals are one of the best, most reliable ways to get a hiring manager to take a closer at someone’s resume. At some point in your career, you may be asked to write a referral letter for a friend or a colleague. Referrals help the employer learn more about the candidate not only in terms of their qualifications for the role, but also to understand the candidate’s work ethic. What is the importance of a job referral and what are some good examples of a good job referral? We are here to answer all these questions while giving you some helpful tips on how to ask for a job referral by making good use of your hiring network and job referral sites like LinkedIn or Refer HR.

The importance of a job referral and how to refer someone

Regardless of what industry you’re in, job referrals create an avenue for job seekers to have access to jobs that are not advertised, and it gives confidence to employers that they are hiring “high quality” candidates. Research also shows that referred hires tend to stay on longer at a company.

A referred candidate is a faster hire than a traditional candidate. This is because, rather than having to screen through hundreds of resumes or craft a job posting, you’re able to make the hiring decision faster by interviewing the referred candidate. It is also a cheaper way to hire candidates since you don’t have to pay traditional recruiting costs to source these candidates by advertising on a job board or going through a recruitment agency.

Job referrals are a great way to build employee referral programs within an organization and ensure that employees feel valued and can have a say in the hiring process. This not only instils a sense of loyalty within the existing employees, but it also creates an environment of open communication and mutual trust between the organization and its employees.

When you refer someone for a job, remember to keep a few points in mind:

  • Talk to your company about their referral policies and discuss about the various job referral reward systems that the company offers.
  • Ensure that you have all the relevant information about the person you’re referring before you make your referral. For example, it is vital that you ask them to share their resume with you so that you can highlight the relevant details in your referral letter.
  • In your referral letter, keep your tone professional and positive. Talk about how well you’ve known the person you’re referring and how long you’ve known them. Highlight their skills and experience that are relevant to the role and company values.
  • Always proofread your referral letter to make sure that there are typos or grammatical errors.
  • Remember to follow up with the hiring manager after you make your referral.

Why you should ask for a job referral and job referral examples

Asking for referrals is one of the best ways to get on the hiring manager’s radar. As a job seeker, one way for you to ask for a job referral is by reaching out to the people you already know in your network, via phone or email. Depending on the closeness of the relationship, you can then follow up with the referee for possible job opportunities

When you’ve been referred for a position, it elevates your place in the hiring process and earns you that little gold star which sets you apart from other applicants. If that were not enough to encourage you to ask for job referrals, we’d like to share some examples that will help you get over any awkwardness you may feel while reaching out to your network to ask for referrals.

When reaching out to someone to ask for a job referral, be considerate of their time. It can be awkward to ask someone for a favor, especially when you haven’t interacted with them recently. Here is an example of a job referral request to someone you may not very well, this person might be a casual acquaintance, an alumnus or even someone you’ve run into at a networking event.

“Hi [insert name of contact], [insert what you have in common with person you are reaching out to (i.e., “I attended UBC and recently moved to Vancouver.”]. I came across the [name of role you are applying to (you can also make it a hyperlink)] role at [Company name] and am interested in applying. Would you be open to sharing my resume with the hiring team, so they know about my interest in this role? Happy to chat more if you have the time. Looking forward to hearing from you”

To make things a little easier when you’re crafting that job referral request, here is a basic structure to keep in mind:

1. Remember to greet the person by name formally if you don’t know them well or with an informal “hello” if you know the person.

2. Include a line or two offering your well wishes and an acknowledgement that you have been following this person’s career.

3. Talk about your current job search efforts. Let the person know that you’re aware of an open position at their company, and that you’re interested in interviewing for the position.

4. Make your request depending on the closeness of your relationship with the referee. Keep it to the point and be considerate of their time.

5. A short statement informing the recipient that you have attached your resume and cover letter.

Don’t forget to attach relevant documents like your resume or a cover letter to support your message. The above example is to the point but does not come across as being too pushy or over-familiar. Requesting for job referrals through job referral sites like LinkedIn or Refer HR also opens doors for you as job seeker to land the right role and connect with the right people. Job referrals have always been number one on our list of creative ways to source candidates. The value of referrals surpasses the value of other hiring channels, by delivering high quality candidates that incur low costs to the company.