Recruit faster and better by deploying your own employees using Hunterz
Watch this interview with Vincent De Meerleer from Hunterz and find out, how you can recruit faster and better by using Hunterz employee referral program.
Transcript of the Hunterz interview:
Hi, I am Luc Bossaert from Adessa Group and today I will be talking with Vincent De Meerleer from Hunterz about employee referral programs.
Q. Can you introduce yourself?
Hello Luc, I am Vincent. I am the co-founder of Xpertize, which was the first Referral hiring platform in Belgium and also the co-founder of Hunterz, which is the first gamified mobile solution to bring Referral hiring.
Q. Could you tell us a little about yourself and your company?
I have always been a firm believer in the referral hiring, so I started doing business in that field, like 15 years ago where we launched the first referred hiring platform, it was in 2006, which was called Xpertize. Afterwards, we still kept playing in that field, and two years ago, we also launched another solution, which is called Hunterz and which is a mobile gamified referral solution.
Q. Can you remind us what referral hiring is?
Referral hiring is a hiring source that has been used for years by companies in Belgium or abroad. Normally with larger companies, but also more and more smaller companies tend to use it. Referral hiring is the use of your own network of employees to find the best new candidates that can apply for jobs open at your company.
Q. Why is referral hiring a hot topic again within companies?
When you have a look at the market right now, the market is very tense on the job side. We are really within what we call ¨the war for talent¨. What we have seen the last two years, is a rapidly increase further into that direction and so we are now sitting in what we call in our field the ¨candidate-driven market¨. It means that candidates that you are trying to reach and offered positions within your company usually have more offers on the table available. So, it is difficult to find the right arguments to convince them to join your client and so trying to find candidates outside those ways might increase your chances of finding the right candidates. That means you don’t pick Talent anymore. It is Talent that picks you and Talent that is referred to you by their own network will easier pick you.
Q. What are the benefits of referral hiring?
We can quote the four main benefits of referral hiring.
- The first is of course: Hiring costs reduction of 50 to 80% when we compare it to other classical hiring methods like job posting, recruitment agencies etcetera.
- The second one is: The retention rate. We can see through recent studies that 65% of employees who came to the company through referral hiring tend to stay for more than three years in the company, which is a much higher than the employees coming through job boards, were the number is 14%.
- Third the advantage of referral hiring is definitely the employee engagement rate. What we can see is that employees put their own reputation at stake, which in turn leads to higher quality of candidates hired through a company.
- And the fourth argument what we can put forward is definitely also the reduction in time to hire. We have seen through recent studies and our own experience, that candidates who come through their own friends are easier to get on board and then the sourcing of candidates has a positive impact of 40% in reduction time to hire.
Q. Why is it that referred employees tend to stay longer in the company?
For the very simple reason that when you come to a company that you already had a chance to discuss, for example, with friends or previous colleagues about the company culture, what the type of organisation is, the management style from the company, it is much more easier to make your choice. When you arrive in the company you have no surprise anymore in principle of course compared to what you will in practice see. It is really the opposite when you are a candidate coming from the outside because there you are totally in the dark. You have no comparison point within the company, you don’t know what the future is. So, it is much more difficult for you to find the right place in the organisation.
Q. What is needed for an Employee Referral Program to work?
To make it simple we can quote three basic elements that need to be found in every referral program put in place by a company.
- First of all, is obviously a clear communication on the objectives pursued by the company and what is expected from each employee into the referral program. That is the most important one.
- Second, you have to keep the employees informed along the way. It’s easy to ask them to find the right candidates and bring them to you, but the least they can expect is that you keep them informed about what is going on with the candidates they have presented.
- And then maybe the last point we can a quote here, is the fun aspect. I think in our view that if you ask people to make something that is outside the job description, at least you have to make it fun, beyond some compensation and give them the possibility to earn other gifts or rewards in any other way.
Q. How is this reflected in Hunterz?
What we put in place is very simple. When the employee gets its own Hunterz app installed, he will get a notification for each new job that is published and posted by the company and then he will get the chance to present candidates. That first part of the notification, but then he will also get notified each time one of these employees or one of the persons he has presented for one of the roles moves on in the process.
The second one is that we wanted to reward the employee throughout the process. Normally, what you see in referral hiring, is that the system is rather on-off. Either my candidate is hired, and then I get something. If he is not hired, then unfortunately for me I will get nothing. So we changed that process and now for each step into the process which is successfully passed through the candidate, I will receive some points, which are exchangeable in gifts or rewards in the shop that is embedded in the app itself, so that is really important.
Then the last element is the gamified aspect, which we already discussed about. Gamified, because we have five levels in the game. We would like to encourage the employees to run through different steps, levels into the game. So, the more they will do in the app, the more candidates they will present, the further they will go into the game.
Q. Does referral hiring have an impact on employer’s branding?
Well, I would say the answer is obviously yes, Luc. Well, when you look at companies nowadays, they spend a lot of money on their employee branding campaigns, on the press, on the internet etcetera, and the return is not always what they would like. Compare to that, if you ask your own employees to be your Ambassadors on the outside world, then the impact is much higher. If you can convince your friend that your company is the best place to work for, then obviously that is the best way to find the right candidate for your own company.
Q. Is Hunterz easy to deploy for HR managers?
Absolutely, we know how difficult it is for HR people to have different systems to manage when it comes to candidates coming through different sources. So, what we achieved, is a real integration of a solution within different ATS solutions. So, if it is a SAP, SuccessFactors, being Oracle, being TalentSoft, we can all integrate Hunterz with the solution, which makes it easy for people to use. So, you can post your job on one platform and then it is also published to all your employees on their own app and all candidates that have been presented by your own employees, get directly into your Applicant Tracking System (ATS) and you can manage all these candidates like you would have done for all the candidates coming from job boards or other means.
Q. Is there any minimum company size for which a referral hiring can work?
Not at all, what we have seen from our experience is that when a company puts in place a referral program, you can expect to have about 30% to 40% of your own population who is active into the referral systems. So, if we take a minimum company size of 100 people it means that you would have at minimum 30 people participating actively into the referral system. So, I would say a company like this, like hundred people, is certainly the minimum you should have, but we have companies running those programs which are bigger obviously.
Q. In which countries are you active?
For the moment we have active clients in four different countries, which is Belgium, Luxembourg, France and Switzerland, because the app is already available in four languages, which are French, Dutch, English and German. Based on those languages we can also expend our scope. We are waiting now for our first client to land in Spain, we develop the extra language, which will open other markets as well.
Q. What is the typical deployment time of Hunterz?
If you use Hunterz as pure standalone modus, we can deploy that in two days. If we integrate that into a solution it depends on the solution, but normally within two to three weeks’ time it should be pretty much okay to deploy.
Q. What is next for your company Hunterz?
Well, there are a lot of challenges ahead. First is of course to open new markets through other countries, that´s the first one. But then we would to have a deeper integration into other ATS Solutions on the market. We already have integration active through Adessa Group with SAP SuccessFactors and then we have a deep integration as well with TalentSoft, which is the fastest growing ATS solution in Europe.
Thank you very much for the interview Vincent. You are welcome, Luc.
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