Most employee referral programs offer a simple cash reward for finding worthy job candidates. Change.org, a petition site and self-described “platform for change,” has come up with a pair of referral programs that are a bit more unique.
If you don’t work for Change.org and want to refer someone, the organization is offering a $1,000 reward plus $1,000 to the charity of your choice if your candidate is given a job. And if you do work for Change.org? You’ll get two roundtrip tickets to any one of the 18 countries where Change.org has staff–a benefit that has the not-so-hidden agenda of nudging employees towards connecting with colleagues.
One of Change.org’s strategic priorities is to support and grow a world-class team, explains Jennifer Dulski, COO and president of Change.org. Part of that, she says, is motivating people to suggest worthy candidates. “We took the standard referral program and tried to think about how we could make it more aligned with our values and mission,” she says. Plus, the added publicity from a unique referral program doesn’t hurt.
So far, hundreds of referrals have gone through the new external referral program (Change.org is hiring for about 20 positions at the moment). About 80% of referrals have moved on to the applicant phase. “The quality is quite strong,” says Dulski. She estimates that the company is now getting 10 times the number of referrals it received previously, before there was an official referral program.