How Tech Companies Hire Top Talent

[fa icon="calendar"] Apr 7, 2016 2:08:49 PM / by Andy Wolfe

Andy Wolfe


Tech companies know that the best hires come from employee connections, but how do you make sure you get enough or the right ones in the door? Dropbox, Facebook, and Google have a ton of talented people joining their teams every day. If you want to hire top talent, do it like them. 

Rather than mass-emailing employees for referrals, they take matters into their own hands to make the process a lot easier (and fun). 

How Do They Do It?

Dropbox uses "Searchlight Meetings," which are informal get-togethers where employees can make hiring suggestions face-to-face. These meetings usually last between 30 minutes to an hour, and occur no more than once a month. They usually involve music, drinks, food, and giveaways. 

Prior to a Searchlight Meeting, all participating employees are alerted about which roles are looking to be filled, what each position entails, and any other details that would be necessary for the job hunt, like location. The employees then chat with hiring managers about recruiting goals and who they know that might be a good fit.

Facebook also proactively collect top contacts from employees using what they call the “Ninja Hunt,” a creative approach for identifying top talent. When Facebook is looking to hire an engineer, their hiring managers gather up their employees and ask them to think about their friends to see if any of them would be great engineers. Sounds pretty simple, doesn't it?

Google, like you've guessed, does the same exact thing, except they call them “Sourcing Jams.” During a Sourcing Jam, a group of about 25 employees get together with recruiters to comb through their social networks to see if anyone is a fit for any current openings. In addition, Google takes a “marketing-centric” approach to asking for these connections. Using certain questions to ask their employees like, “do you know any great software engineers in Boston?” rather than "who can you refer to us for this software engineer opening?" yielded more results.

What Do These All Have In Common?

The key to success in Searchlight Parties, Ninja Hunts, and Sourcing Jams isn’t just in their catchy names and internal marketing to employees. The reason these methods work so well is that: they’re easy, they're short, and they're fun.

By turning the sourcing process into a gamified activity designed around your employees, you'll increase enthusiasm and participation. If your employees feel like giving out contact names is easy, fast, and enjoyable, they’ll be more willing to help you out. More employee participation means more valuable job candidates coming in for you!



ROIKOI automates the Searchlight Parties, Ninja Hunts, and Sourcing Jams.

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Topics: Recruiting, Hiring, Sourcing

Andy Wolfe

Written by Andy Wolfe

I'm co-founder and CEO of ROIKOI, a smarter sourcing platform where you get your own database of candidates pre-filtered for talent and fit.