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How Firstbird helped Caritas-CBT to implement a digital employee referral program resulting in 1 in every 3 referred candidates hired

Caritas – CBT, a social enterprise specialised in retirement and nursing based in Cologne, Germany, whose hiring needs are 30 employees per year, decided to automate their recruitment process in order to overcome recruiting challenges deriving from the lack of digitalization. Implementing the new digital recruiting tools to satisfy the workforce demand arose as a need to improve their recruiting strategy, reduce the HR team’s administrative efforts, increase the number of incoming applications and gain reliable and highly qualified hires by optimizing the tracking of employee referrals.

In particular, an employee referral program was part of the company’s recruitment strategies. Nevertheless, a manual employee referral program entailed a complex workload to the HR team due to the manual recordings of referrals that led to the lack of transparency. Furthermore, recruiters’ inability to track employee referrals would often result in data loss. Besides, employees weren’t offered any incentives to refer candidates.

Approach

Therefore, to change the course of their recruiting and provide their residents with the best-qualified nursing staff, Caritas – CBT implemented the Firstbird digital employee referral program together with an integration to the MHM-HR applicant tracking system. The company chose Firstbird primarily because it provides GDPR compliant data storage of employee referrals and total transparency in the referral activities for recruiters and referrers. Views of job shares, direct referrals, applications, interviews, and hirings can be tracked by recruiters and shown to the referrers. In addition, referrers are automatically informed of the status of their referrals and notified of open positions within the company that can then easily be shared on employees’ social networks via the Firstbird platform.

Another reason for choosing Firstbird’s digital employee referral program lies in its gamification approach to the recruiting process. To bolster employee engagement in providing referrals and thus register as Talent Scouts, the Firstbird platform allows administrators to set up both monetary and non-monetary incentives as well as referral bonuses through reward shops for each successful referral. For example, Caritas – CBT employees are offered both monetary reward of 400€ and non monetary incentive of additional vacation days after the referred candidate has signed the contract. An exciting further motivator will be the Firstbird Reward Shop, which will be introduced soon!

Hence, the efficient promotion of Firstbird’s digital employee referral program implementation to the company’s employees was a top priority. To ensure the success of their new digital referral program, the HR team personally visited all facilities where they educated and onboarded the major stakeholders of Firstbird. Following this, they then supported their employees in personally teaching and training them to register and use the new program. Furthermore, to back up the company in its promotion of the new digital employee referral program, Firstbird provided the HR team with workshops for training their employees. Indeed, Firstbird provides excellent consulting support in offering in-depth strategy workshops on the software features and creating the optimal reward strategy for the best-functioning referral program.

The customer service from Firstbird has provided us with valuable tips and tricks. Everything was understood easily and we feel very well looked after.

— Kathrin Hartmann —
Head of Recruiting, Caritas-Betriebsführungs- und Trägergesellschaft mbH

Results

Let’s take stock of what Caritas-CBT achieved with Firstbird’s seamless implementation to the MHM-HR applicant tracking system. Now referrals are stored digitally and in Firstbird. Thus, managing an automated employee referral program is efficient and easy. Firstbird platform provides all its users with full transparency: Talent Scouts are automatically informed about the status of their referrals without additional administrative effort from their HR team. Moreover, employees are motivated to provide referrals thanks to the reward strategy set up by the company. For each successful referral, employees are offered a monetary reward of 400€ and a non-monetary incentive of additional vacation days.

Alongside the efficient communication both online and personally to their employees on the Firstbird’s introduction, 102 employees registered as Talent Scouts. They are highly engaged within the Firstbird’s platform: the registered Talents Scouts shared the jobs 1,380 times and every 3rd Talent Scout has already referred a candidate. The optimized referral process gave the desired results: 100% of hires made through the Firstbird platform applied through a direct referral. CBT is hiring every 3rd referral received through Firstbird resulting in a highly qualified and reliable workforce.

Do you want to have your own success story by digitally optimizing your employee referral program? Get in touch!

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