How Employee Referrals Actually Improved Diversity at Intel
Google CEO, Sundar Pichia stated that “A diverse mix of voices leads to better discussions, decisions, and outcomes for everyone.” Google, along with other tech giants, like Intel, recognize that diversity in the workforce can help to deliver better business outcomes. These companies also realize the power employee referrals have in improving diversity in the workforce.
Intel, for example, recently made a $300 million commitment to boost diversity not just at Intel, but throughout the tech industry. While a majority of this money went to creating engineering scholarships and training, Intel also committed to make diversity a priority in-house. Here’s how they did it.
Effective Referral Program
Intel already had a referral program in place, but they created a separate program geared explicitly at hiring women, minorities, and veterans. The company set a goal to increase the number of women, minorities, and veterans hired by 14 percent. They took several steps to make this happen.
Step One: Doubled Referral Bonus
The first step was to incentivize the workplace. They did this by doubling the current referral bonus from $2,00 to $4,000 for every qualified candidate that fell into one of the three targeted areas.
Step Two: Promoted the Diversity Program
Promotion of the program was an essential factor for Intel. Not only did the company promote in-house, but they also released several press releases to bring attention to their new referral program. Not only did Intel’s in-house material detail the guidelines for the program, but it also explained the reason for the additional employee referral program. An in-house promotional stated:
“We also recognize that we need to evolve to keep Intel competitive in the global marketplace and representative of our consumers and communities.”
Step Three: Simplify the Referral Process
Intel already had a referral platform in place to make it easy for its employees to make referrals from the desktop computer, laptop, or mobile device. This feature empowers employees to make referrals when it is most convenient for them.
Intel’s new referral program realized great results. The company was able to increase hires from the three designated unrepresented groups by 44 percent. Specifically, female senior executive hires went up by 33 percent, and minority senior executive rose by 6 percent in the first quarter.
If you want to improve diversity in your workplace and achieve better business outcomes, a new and targeted employee referral program could be the answer. Modernizing your program to provide a valuable employee referral program that makes it easy and convenient for your employees to make referrals can ensure that your new program helps to build diversity, not hurt it.