Referrals—Why you need one and how to get one.
Anywhere from 20-40% of new hires are found through employee referrals. That number is only going up! Read on to find out why you could benefit from a referral and where you can find one!
Why do you need a referral?
Simply put, a company likes when someone they trust can vouch for you. Studies show that employees hired through referrals stayed almost twice as long as non-referral hires. Companies also see longer retention in employees who refer employees, given that they now have more people they know, like, and enjoy working with at the company. Employers want to keep employees around as long as possible. Using a referral process increases the chances of lower turnover.
Getting a referral allows you to have someone advocate for you and your words. They can back up your experience and skills.
How can you get a referral?
There are a few avenues you can travel down to get a referral. The most convenient can be used when you have a personal relationship with someone who works at the company you are applying to. This is quite self-explanatory.
Another way to get a referral is to use your LinkedIn connections! Search your connections on LinkedIn to discover if any of your connections work for said company. If so, contact connections to ask them more about the company. Be straightforward about your need for a reference. This could bring you both a company mentor and a job! You could reach out to individual contacts and see if they know anyone who would be a help to you.
Your alma mater’s career or alumni office is also a great resource when it comes to finding people for referrals. An alumni office has access to a massive network of people who are more than likely willing to help fellow alumni. Connect with anyone who may have a pull with the company you are applying to. You never know who knows who!
When asking for a reference, make sure to do so politely—give them a way to say no without making it uncomfortable. For example, you could ask, “Do you think that you know my work well enough to write me a recommendation?” or, “Would you feel comfortable vouching for my work ethic in a reference?” Don’t forget most employees also benefit from giving a referral!
Referrals make the job market go ‘round. If you are gunning for your dream position, get a referral—it will increase your chances of living the dream!
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