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Are You Sure You Want to Refer a Friend?

March 30th, 2016

May 26

Referring a friend for a job seems like a win-win situation. You help someone you know and like find work while also helping an employer fill a vacancy on their staff. Plus, you could be eligible for a referral bonus or reap professional rewards down the road. Be warned, however, that there could be consequences for you if the person you refer doesn’t perform as well as promised. Always ask yourself the following questions before making a recommendation:

“What is Your Link to the Employer?”

If you happened to come across a random job listing and you think a friend might be well suited, don’t hesitate to let them know about it. You have little-to-no relationship with this employer, meaning that your friend’s performance won’t reflect on you. It’s up to the hiring manager himself to determine if this person is a good fit. If, however, you are closely linked to the employer or currently employed by them, you need to give the referral a lot more thought. Your professional reputation could take a hit if the person you refer doesn’t live up to expectations.

“How Close are You to Your Friend?”

There are different degrees of friends. Some people are merely acquaintances, while others are your oldest, best, and closest connections. For obvious reasons, you will be willing to do more and stake more on the latter than the former. Keep in mind that by referring a friend you also become a part of the recruitment process. You will likely be fielding questions from both your friend and the hiring manager throughout. It may be worth spending that time to help a close connection, but not worth it to help a distant relative or someone you barely know.

“Do You Honestly Know Your Friend’s Work Habits?”

As a general rule of thumb, don’t presume to know or understand a person’s work habits until you have worked with them directly. Everyone claims to be a smart, capable, hard worker, and no one is willing to admit that they are lazy, irresponsible, or unmotivated. If you haven’t actually seen your friend in action, you can’t accurately vouch for their credentials and character. It’s not inappropriate to ask your friend for a copy of their resume and to do some online research before agreeing to make the referral. Remember that you also have something to lose if this doesn’t work out.

It’s never a good idea to rush into decisions that impact you professional life. Find more advice, guidance, and resources to help you throughout your career journey by contacting our team of great recruiters at The Concorde Group. Partner with a leading staffing agency in White Plains today!

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