How to Find Good Employees - Glassdoor for Employers

Where Employers Find Employees

If you’re going to find a job, it’s good to understand where employers think they find their new employees. Each year, the Career Crossroads Source of Hire Survey attempts to illuminate the question. They gather a group of big company recruiters together and try to harvest the data necessary to make a usable answer.

The authors are quick to point out that their conclusions are only as good as the input they get (and they’re not all that excited about the quality of the data). But, if you ask around the industry, the survey is regarded as a good approximation of the answer.

Here are the numbers:


You can see that almost 60% of new hires come from either referrals or a Job Board (including the company career site as a job board). Generally speaking, it takes 10 referrals to generate one new hire. It takes about 100 job board submissions to do the same.

In other words, finding a way to get referred is worth 10 resumes you submit to various online employment web sites. The other 40% of hiring approaches are either specialized (new graduates, rehires, recruiter initiated or 3rd party search) or a long shot. But, roughly 1 out of 100 times you walk into the place you want to work and apply, you’ll get a job.

Here are the five most important things you should take away from this data:

  • While Social Media is fun and entertaining, it’s currently a long shot for getting a job. Focus your efforts on other things.
  • In spite of what you might hear, people do get jobs from job boards. The odds don’t get better because you apply more often. So, devote about 20% of your time to looking for work on job boards and company career sites.
  • Almost 30% of jobs are given to referrals. This means work to get yourself referred. Put about 30% of your energy into networking in general.
  • You may get sold on the idea that temping is a great way to have your foot in the door. The stats don’t support the idea. Get a temp job if you want a temp job, not because you want a permanent job.
  • As always, the best jobs come from deciding where you want to work and relentlessly networking your way into the organization. Use the other 50% of your time to figure out what you want and then go get it.