OCTOBER 07, 2021


  • Manual referral programs can’t motivate employees. The progress of referrals can get lost in a manual program, leading employees to believe their work was for nothing and demotivating them. 
  • Manual referral programs are hard to organize. When relying solely on word of mouth for referrals, there’s a risk of lumping referrals along with other applicants and failing to update the people who made the referral in the first place.
  • New tech can upgrade referrals. With solutions like Recruitday’s Employee and Recruiter Apps, streamlining referral programs with tech can be easy.


Though referrals have been acknowledged time and again as one of the best tools for recruitment, it can be difficult. The traditional way of doing referrals—where employees are simply asked to spread the word about an opening at their company—is hard to keep track of, usually ends up disorganized, and fails to take advantage of new technology. 

For too long, businesses have opted to keep their referral programs strictly manual, relying on word-of-mouth and additional work by the Human Resources department. Yet thanks to the rise of employee referral software solutions in recent years, the manual way of doing things is no longer the best. 

Let's go over the reasons why manual referral programs don’t work and what the alternative could be.


Manual referral programs are hard to track

When employees are simply asked to refer people they know for an open job position, it can be hard to tell if the request was ever listened to at all. Additionally, once they do make a referral, many employees are kept in the dark by HR on whether the referral is scheduled to be interviewed, has been interviewed, or even already preparing to be onboarded. 

The lack of transparency over referrals can be demoralizing for employees. In many companies, many employees are already hesitant to participate in referral programs because they’re already too busy working. Withholding key information from employees will lead them to see referrals as a hassle not worth taking part in. 

Manual referral programs can end up disorganized

If a company’s referral program solely relies on hoping that an employee’s connection fills out a job application, things can get messy very quickly. For one, referrals run the risk of being lumped in with all the other applicants. This is a mistake because employers are three to four times more likely to hire a referred candidate than one sourced through other channels. Paying special attention to referrals could save a company a ton on recruitment costs. 

Another danger of failing to give referrals the proper attention is that it sends a message your company isn’t serious about recruiting. Not only do you lose credibility with the candidates, but employees also doubt how much their help in recruitment really matters. 


Manual referral programs fail to leverage new tech

Is your career site and employee referral program optimized for mobile? Manual employee referral programs rely too much on employee word of mouth and don’t realize that recruiting in 2021 needs to be optimized for remote work, mobile applications, and more. 

Consider that many telecommuters, remote workers, traveling workers, and in-house workers need to be able to send their applications on the go. A referral program optimized for mobile also lets employees generate leads away from their desks. 


Taking your employee referral program to the next level

The good news is that there are easy ways for businesses to upgrade their employee referral program and bring them into 2021. 

Recruitday’s referral products now utilize technology from computing giant Microsoft. The products are split into two main tools that make it easier for both employees and recruiters to streamline their referral program.

The first is Employee Referrals for Teams, or the app for employees, where employees get notified when a new job is available and can make referrals directly through the Microsoft Teams app. They’ll also be updated through Teams on how their referral is progressing (whether they’ve been interviewed, shortlisted, etc). It’s an easy and straightforward experience for employees that ultimately encourages them to participate in referral programs. 


The second tool is the Recruitday Employee Referrals for Recruiters, where recruiters can track key metrics and actionable insights about their recruitment program. The app acts as a one-stop-shop where HR personnel can stay organized and manage everything, even allowing itself to be customized to individual company needs without the need for code. 

Recruitday’s tools are proof that moving from a manual referral program to software-based solutions doesn’t have to be hard. In fact, the few minutes that it will take to set up Recruitday’s tools will be easily offset by the long-term benefits of having a referral program that is accessible, organized, and robust. 


In conclusion, no business should still have a manual referral program that fails to take advantage of today’s tech. The benefits of modernizing and upgrading your referral program with the help of new software and tools are too much to ignore. 



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OCTOBER 07, 2021

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