Cultural fit & talent pools: Recruiting proactively with employee referrals

If there are no urgent vacancies to fill, companies also tend to do without employee referrals. But these recommended applicants, in particular, can be a good cultural fit and valuable addition to your own talent pool. When required, recruiters can then quickly contact these suitable candidates directly, without first having to incur significant time and cost in advertising the job. With smart solutions for referrals, recruiters can usefully combine employee referrals and talent pools.


If the chemistry is right, colleagues get on well with each other too

Birds of a feather flock together. This is not only a proverbial pearl of wisdom but also a well-established fact from studies in social psychology. That is why, in our free time, we meet with like-minded people in sports clubs, go with ‘Charlie’ to dog training or brush up our Italian in evening classes. For the same reason, we join Facebook groups whose members share the same interests or values; and look for the perfect match on dating websites. The more we have in common with someone, the more we enjoy their company. A fact that is also important in recruitment, where it highlights the importance of cultural fit for both the employer and employees.


Cultural fit – a win-win situation for applicants and organizations

If an applicant fits your own company culture, shares the same values, and has a way of working that is compatible with company processes, then not only is there an increased chance of attracting this candidate: that person will also settle quickly and easily into their new job. In an ideal situation, full performance potential will be reached in the shortest time and he or she will be an asset to the team, both professionally and personally. Cultural fit is therefore important for pleasant and productive business culture.


Employees recommend candidates that fit with company culture

It is no secret that your own employees often have a good nose for whether someone will fit into the team or not. When it comes to filling a vacancy in their own department, often they can judge the cultural fit better than HR. This ability is attracting the attention of recruiters and referral programs have already proved their worth in many organizations. When there are company vacancies, employees are encouraged to recommend suitable candidates from their personal networks, thus supporting the recruitment effort.


Referrals are valuable – independent of vacancies

Nevertheless, a lot of potentials is still wasted – because the concept of a ‘cultural fit’ is not only valuable when there is a suitable vacancy at hand. “Actually, you would fit in very well here, but unfortunately there are no vacancies at present”: it may be bad timing, but it doesn’t change the fact that the employee’s referral could be a useful addition in the near future. But it remains hidden from recruiters and, with each new vacancy, the search starts again from scratch. So why do many companies only push for employee referrals when there are vacancies to be filled?


Exploit the full potential offered by employee referrals

It would be smarter if you could recommend someone you consider particularly well-qualified and suited to the company not only for a specifically advertised position – but also independently of current vacancies. By no longer restricting our referrals to the ‘right time’, in the long term, it should be possible to find even more ‘suitable talent’ quicker. Because in addition to the talent that is a good fit, employee referrals bring a whole lot of other benefits that companies cannot afford to ignore. The time to hire is significantly reduced, which means the entire recruitment process is quicker. This reduces costs. Furthermore, employees that have been appointed through personal recommendation are often more loyal to their employers than other candidates. The result: a fall in staff turnover. Referral programs also encourage existing employees to become brand ambassadors for the company.


More than just proactive: talent pools with a ‘cultural-fit’ guarantee

Some companies are already successfully creating talent pools – with “runner-up” candidates from interviews, promising contacts from various recruitment events, and one or two speculative applicants. With referrals from their own employees, companies are in a position to grow their talent pools significantly faster and, when needed, can draw on a broad base of pre-selected candidates, filtered by employees.


Facilitate referrals with just a few clicks

The creation of talent pools with a “cultural fit guarantee” naturally presupposes that employees can refer their contacts quickly and easily without reference to a specific job. If an employee starts the Talentry Smart Referral Assistant, for example, it offers both referral variants right at the start and asks the employee whether they would like to recommend a candidate for a specific position or without a position. For the recruiter, these “general referrals” are collected in a separate and easily searchable Talent Pool. 

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