9 Best Employee Referral Program Examples for Quick Hiring

9 Best Employee Referral Program Examples for Quick Hiring-feature image
November 6, 2022 Reviewed By : Megha Sharma .7 Min read

Finding and hiring new employees is one of the most challenging tasks in an organization.

Well, there is a way in which you can reduce the time and money spent on hiring while engaging your existing employees – Employee Referral Program.

Yes, through internal referrals, you can hire suitable employees, and reduce your cost-per-hire and time-per-hire.

Let’s understand how these employee referral schemes work with the help of a few examples from prominent organizations. Further, we’ll also discuss how you can start an employee referral policy in your organization.

What is an Employee Referral Program?

What is an Employee Referral Program

An employee referral program is a referral scheme where an existing employee recommends a prospective candidate for an open position in their organization. For candidate recommendations, employees receive rewards in the form of an employee referral bonus.

An employee referral policy boosts employee participation and engagement, and it gives them an extra push to contribute to the organization’s growth. Furthermore, employee referral recruitment reduces hiring time, money, and other resources spent on regular hiring process.

Best Employee Referral Program Examples

Employee Referral Program Examples

Let’s check out how the leading organizations are using their employee referral programs to reduce attrition rates and their hiring costs to get the right candidate onboard.

  • Accenture Get Referred Program

Accenture, one of the largest service providers, has an employee referral policy named, Get Referred. Here, aspiring candidates connect their social media profiles like LinkedIn or Facebook with Accenture’s website. Next, the company scans their profile to find if the candidate is connected to any of their current employees, and that employee works as their referral.

  • Google Ask Questions Program

Google referral program is the simplest of all. Their employees are just asked a simple question like, ‘Who’s the best marketer you know?’ Employees think harder and dig deeper to find the best person’s name, and their name becomes their candidate referral. With this employee referral policy, Goggle gets the best candidates on board.

  • Intel’s Double Referral Bonus Policy to Award Diversity

To hire a diverse workforce, Intel has a double referral bonus policy. According to this, if their employees give an internal referral of a female, veteran, or a minority candidate, they get a double referral bonus as per the policy. It is a creative employee referral program that makes their workplace diverse.

  • Salesforce – Recruitment Happy Hours

Salesforce has a fun and innovative style of getting internal referrals for their employees. They organize a get-together where employees invite their friends and family they want to refer to. This employee referral program is known as the recruitment happy hours, where referrals get into an informal interaction with the recruiters. In addition to this, Salesforce also offers thoughtful gifts as employee referral bonuses to their employees irrespective of their future with the company.

  • Hewlett Packard – Public Recognition & Appreciation for Successful Hires

Hewlett Packard truly understands employees’ need and want for recognition and appreciation and has incorporated the same in their employee referral policy. The company publicly recognizes those employees whose referrals are successfully hired in the organization. The recognition and appreciation by the management motivate the employees to get more referral candidates.

  • PURE – Don’t Waste Time Approach

PURE is an American insurance company that hires a majority of its employees through internal referrals. Their employee referral scheme is based on the philosophy of not wasting time. PURE HRs ask for referrals from employees at the time of their hiring itself. In this way, they get more referrals in a short span of time.

  • Digital Ocean – A Win Win Approach

Digital Ocean’s employee referral program is a Triple Win approach that benefits the organization, employees, and society. Whenever there is a successful hire through internal referral, the company gives a part of the employee referral bonus to the employee as a reward. But also, the other half of the amount is donated to support a social cause. This way, the company keeps its employees happy while fulfilling a social obligation.

  • Distillery – More than Referral Incentives

Your employees might need something more than just a monetary employee referral bonus. This is what Distillery understood and replaced their financial incentives with the latest iPhones and Apple watches. The organization realized that gadgets as bonuses attract more referrals as compared to money.

  • InMobi – A Vacation for Successful Employee Referral

When InMobi faced difficulties in hiring the right engineering managers, they tried offering experiential awards. The company parked a Vespa is their United States office and a Royal Enfield at their India offices. So, according to their employee referral scheme, every time an employee gives a referral that turns into a successful hire, the employee gets to take a bike or a vacation to Bali as their employee referral bonus. This has encouraged many employees to give the maximum number of referrals to the organization.

Suggested Read: Best Employee Lifecycle Management Strategies for Higher Productivity

How to Start an Employee Referral Program?

How to Start an Employee Referral Program Infographics

Wondering how you can start an employee referral scheme in your organization? We have got you a few points that you should consider while drafting an employee referral policy for your organization.

  • Draft a strong employee referral policy

    Streamline employee referral policy to decide how you want to announce an opening position, you can do it through HR software or emails. Further, what will be your screening process and referral bonus policy. Do you want to reward employees with successful hiring or just for sharing recommendations?

  • Offer a tempting referral bonus policy for employees

    Show your employees the benefits they can get by giving a candidate referral. These benefits should be tempting enough so that employees research and go out of their way to find the right candidate for your organization.

  • Maintain 100% transparency in your employee referral scheme

    Maintain complete transparency while sharing your employee referral scheme. Mention eligibility, benefits, terms and conditions that will make a candidate referral eligible for the bonus. For instance, an employee will only receive the referral bonus on successful hiring or completion of probation period of the employee.

  • Keep everyone in loop for any progress in the recruitment process

    Keep your employees informed if there is any progress in the hiring of their referral candidate. This way, they will know about the program and how it works. Also, always be available to address your employees’ queries regarding your referral program.

  • Track and analyze data to know the success of employee referral policy

    Ensure to track the progress of the implemented employee referral program for your organization. Here, you can use your HR software to analyze the retention and engagement of referred employees and check if it’s working for you or not.

How Does HRMS Software Help Manage Employee Referral Program?

To design a successful employee referral program, HR software can be really helpful. You can publish the complete employee referral policy on your HRMS to maintain transparency. Even your employees can access the policy whenever they have any doubts.

Further, HR software analytics can help you understand the employee lifecycle in your organization better. You can check the retention rate and employee engagement for the ones who were hired through referrals.


These were some of the examples of an employee referral program that leading organizations apply in their organization. After applying these, companies have realized that their employees are more interested in giving candidate referrals. As a result, there is a major reduction in the hiring cost and employee attrition rates.

You can also take inspiration and start a similar employee referral policy for your organization or become a little more creative and find out what attracts your employees’ attention.

Suggested Read: What are the Unique Internal Sources of Recruitment for Quick Hiring


  1. How do I make a good employee referral program?

    To make a good employee referral program you need a fair and transparent employee referrals policy that serves both the company and employees’ needs while getting the best talent onboard.

  2. How much do employees get for referral?

    Employees may get different types of employee referral bonuses depending on the company referral scheme. It may be monetary or in kind, like a holiday or a bike. However, the employee referral incentive may vary from ₹5,000 to ₹50,000 depending on the company, candidate, and vacant position.

  3. What are the advantages of employee referral programs?

    The advantages of employee referral programs are that it increases employee engagement, gets better talent, increases employee retention, and save recruitment and hiring costs.

  4. Why do companies prefer referrals?

    Companies prefer referrals because it gives them direct access to the best talent in the industry and it also saves their recruitment and hiring costs and time, which is spent on hiring from third-party platforms or agencies.

Related Categories: Applicant Tracking System | Recruitment Management Software | Training Software

Written by Isha Lamba

Isha’s writing journey started way back in 2018 when she graduated in the field of Journalism & Mass Communication. Since then, she has been writing for all digital and print marketing assets including blogs, editorial reviews, landing pages, emailers, and more. She has contributed her writings to genres... Read more

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