What is a Company Network?

Vinayak Ranade
CEO at Drafted

A company network is the collection of networks of all the people in and around your company. Your company network is made up of employees, customers, friends, family, and anyone that has some sort of a connect to your company. Each person connected to your company has their own network which then adds to your company network. This creates a compounding effect which allows you the potential to build a network of hundreds of thousands of people.

Here’s how to estimate the size of your company network: Let’s say your company has 100 employees. If each of them is connected to 500 people, then your company network size is 100 x 500 = 500,000.

Image of who makes up your company network
Your Company Network

Why is your company network important for sourcing talent?

It takes a village to build a great company and it starts with sourcing the right talent for your team. From the first day when the founders start, everyone is helping out. Friends, family, soon followed by investors and advisors. Not long after, there are customers, service providers, and partners. This is your company network and they all want to help you find great people. Use them!

Talent is central to building a great company. You can’t build something meaningful without a great team. Almost all of the talent you hire, is going to interact with your company network at some point along their journey.

Some of this will be employee referrals. Some of it will be external referrals. Some of it will be reference checks . Some of this will be reverse reference checks i.e. talent is checking up on your reputation as an employer. Investing the time to understand who is in your company network and how to leverage these connections will only help strengthen your sourcing efforts to find the best people for your team.

Company networks impact on employees

Once someone joins your company, your company network of employees is going to help them on board and get up to speed. Every person has mentors who are in the company network, and peer-mentors outside the company that are valuable for learning and development.

When someone on your team is getting ready to make a move, your company network supports them for a smooth transition to the next step of their journey - whether it’s an internal or external move. Happy alumni are amazing contributors of referrals and boomerangs.

The best way to source, retain, and develop the best teams is to invest in your company network. When leverage your company network for recruitment there is no limit to the return on your investment. The more invest, the better your return.

These are just some of the reasons why so many companies already invest in their company network, mostly through some sort of referral network to entice employees or others in their network to referral people they know. 80% of employers have some kind of employee referral program.

The most efficient source for hiring

What’s more important though, is that over 80% of job seekers say their network has help them make a career move. In fact, it's well documented that job seekers SHOULD leverage their network to get their foot in the door at a company.

But, only 29% of job seekers are hired through employee referral programs. This means the other 59% of job seekers are undeserved by your current employee referral program and you're missing out.

Here's some other referral stats to get you thinking - referral candidates only take on average 29 days to hire while job boards and career sites take almost double the time to hire. Better still, 45% of referrals stay at least two years at a job.

We know that almost all job seekers use their network to find a new job and referrals make the best hires. So what does this mean?

It means your company network is the most valuable, highest converting, and cost effective way to attract and retain the best teams and hire.

A critical business function

Most companies don’t even know how large their company network is or how to turn it into high quality referrals. They don’t have a picture of who is in it, how they can help, and which people in the company network are looking for their next opportunity.

What’s worse, is that unlike every other critical business function, less than 5% of employers track metrics related to their company network. They have no way to track their network activity, scale their network operations, let alone predict the ROI they can get from it.

Imagine if you had a company leader that came to you and said “We get customers from Facebook Ads, LinkedIn Ads, and Google Ads. The Facebook Ads are the lowest cost, highest converting revenue source, so we’ve decided to spend all our budget with Google.”

You’d think they are crazy! You might even think they should get fired.

Most companies spend a majority of their People Ops and Talent budgets on everything from recruiting agencies, outbound automation tools, sponsorship, career page designers, to job ads and premium subscriptions to dozens of services. Their lowest cost, highest converting talent source is their company network.

Scaling you company network with Drafted

The company network is not often viewed as reliable and predictable. You simply tack up a referral bonus on the company bulletin board and call it a day.

If you need to hire 100 headcount in a quarter you can’t guarantee you’ll get that from referrals, but you can guarantee to fill that by spending $25,000 per hire through an agency.

This is why we built Drafted. 

Drafted helps you make your company network reliable, predictable, and trackable. You can know exactly what your company network size is, the distribution of talent in your company network, and the activity in your company network. You can source external referrals. You can build your company community. Most importantly, you can continue investing in developing your company network, to create a truly evergreen channel for building the next stage of your business.

About Drafted

Your company network is your biggest competitive advantage when it comes to building best-in-class referral programs and making great hires.

Create your free account to join companies like Better.com and Karat who use Drafted to power their referral hiring.