Referring Friends to Employers

12th November 2013

We came across an interesting article from Forbes recently, which looked at the dangers of referring your friends to your employers. Below, we have summarised accordingly.

It’s a common occurrence for friends to nag you for a referral or recommendation for a job with your employer, but putting in a good word can be dangerous. There are a number of things that you should consider before you risk your reputation for them.

Work History
How much do you know about your friend’s professional history? Are they a job-hopper; are they likely to leave after a short period of time? Make sure that you fully understand what kind of employee they are - it can be entirely at odds with what kind of friend they are.

Consider how your colleagues will react to the appointment of your friend, you risk embittering them unless the friend is a superstar at their job.

Your relationship with your friend can be very important to how the arrangement eventually works out. Don’t refer friends with whom you’re not on the very best of terms - it can lead to unnecessary drama and an overlapping of work/social boundaries. Also consider whether you would be able to work productively with your friend.

When talking to friends, we tend only to discuss the extremes of our working environment. Maybe you’ve given them a rosy-coloured view of your workplace; they might have the wrong impression of what it’s really like to work there. Make sure that you’re brutally honest about the environment and make an assessment on whether they would be compatible with the routine.

Referrals can do great things for your career, but they can also work in the opposite fashion. Unfortunately the same applies for the friendship itself. None of us can know the outcome, but you need truly to assess whether the referral is worth the risk and how it will impact your career, friendship and life. is an online agency offering low-cost, fixed-fee recruitment services in the UK.