There’s a lot of noise in the new category of “social recruiting” software, designed for large enterprises to tap their employees’ social connections to help find qualified, “passive” candidates for open positions. While there is a lot of promise in this space (worst case scenario it creates a new channel for company recruiters, best case it revolutionizes the way companies attract talent), it’s helpful to be realistic about expectations with employee referral programs.
The promise of software is always to automate human processes to make them quicker, better, more effective. Software that makes it easier for people to do their jobs, and makes them more productive, is, in most cases, going to be successful. However, software that expects new behavior from users, specifically behaviors they were not quite engaged in prior to using the software, is tricky. Employee referral programs are a perfect example. […]