Further to our previous post on using employee personal networks for recruiting, we’ve received the following tweet “good in theory, but I think too many ee’s don’t want to share their network. Separation of Work and Personal”. Well, Amy’s right.

And since all this discussion started with her story on employee referrals gone wild, we feel it’s time we explained in detail how our model of Employee Engagement in Recruiting actually works.

First of all, yes we know the idea of employee sharing their social networking and Outlook Address Book contacts in order to help HR (or Sales for that matter) is good in theory. However, we also know this: “in theory, there is no difference between theory in practice; but in practice, there is”.

And in practice, it’s true, employees wouldn’t want to share their network.

Why wouldn’t they want to share their network? Well, in developing the system, we could come up with two reasons: 1 – privacy & 2 – the obvious “what’s in it for me?”.

Well, we think we covered both of them.

First of all, regarding privacy issues, this is what we’ve come up with.

1. Each employee is the master of his own domain user account. The user is the only one able to decide how many contacts to share and how.

2. The user can choose between 3 levels of sharing:

  • visible – for example, if I want all other users in my company network to see that I know John, I select John as visible.
  • confidential – for example, if I want all other users in my company network to see John, but not see me as the connection, I select John as confidential
  • invisible – for example, if I don’t want anyone in my network to see John, I select his contact as invisible.

3. In all levels of sharing, contact details for John (e-mail / phone number / address) are never shown, which means anyone who wants to contact John will have to go through me, in the form of an introductory request.

Second, regarding “what’s in it for me”, companies can always come up with incentives for each successful recruitment. And this doesn’t only work in theory, because we’ve tested the theory in practice: one of our clients gives out week-end trips for two for each employee who manages to refer suitable candidates for the company’s open positions.

Hopefully, that covers it. What do you think?