I was recently hired in a rather famous company as a senior developer and have been working there for a bit more than 3 weeks now. Even if 3 weeks isn't a lot, I can already say this company is by far the best place I've ever worked at and not a single day has passed that wasn't better than the one before.

One of my closest friends is currently looking for another job. His profile is more QA related (so hardly similar with what I've been hired to do) and I've seen positions in my new-current company that would match perfectly his profile and goals. He is really interested.

The question is: should I recommend my friend to improve the chances he gets hired ? My main concern is that I don't want to jeopardize my career here would my friend completely mess up the interview. I was told already I was doing really good so far but I'm still on probation obviously - if that's relevant (and I believe it is).

I know for sure the guy is impassioned when it comes to work and takes it very seriously. While this is usually a good thing, I obviously can't know for sure he will do okay enough for the company (or for the interview). I didn't work with him and can't honestly speak of him as a coworker: I can only do so as a friend.

There is a bonus when you endorse someone and he gets hired. I don't know if that's relevant too and I honestly don't care about the bonus. I'm into it for my friend rather than for some money.

Is there a way for me to actually help/endorse him and to prevent any backfire in case it doesn't go well for him ?

5 Answers 5


Is there a way for me to actually help/endorse him and to prevent any backfire in case it doesn't go well for him ?

It depends what you mean by "backfire".

If you honestly believe your friend would make a good employee at your company you should go ahead and heartily recommend him. A strong recommendation from a current employee (even a new employee) carries a lot of weight.

If you are unsure of his abilities, you could still be a referral, but indicate to the hiring manager something along the lines of that you "know of a guy, but aren't sure how good he is professionally."

Unless you are recommending an individual that you know to be a poor performer, this is unlikely to reflect badly on you. I wouldn't consider that "backfiring".

  • 2
    I'd agree with this - recommend him on what you know, make it clear what you don't, and it's their decision to make but might give your friend a bit of a boost
    – Jon Story
    Commented Oct 15, 2014 at 20:48

Have your friend apply and state that he is applying because you went through the interview process, started working at the company and have nothing but nice things to say about the company.

Say nice things - if you believe that they accurate - about your friends if your management asks you about him. Don't say anything more than what you know about him, and stick to what you know.

I got burned once by an employee who recommended her friend, who turned out to be a bum - She refused to take any responsibility for her recommendation. As the Romans, who were not born yesterday - ok, they were born 2000 years ago :) - used to say: "Caveat emptor" aka "Buyer beware"


Respect in the workplace is earned capital, spend it wisely.

Frankly, if you have only been there 3 weeks, your recommendation probably won't mean much anyway since you haven't had the chance to really prove yourself. Also, if you recommend this friend, you are now linking your name to them for the journey, including if (s)he gets a job and then messes up.

If you can not evaluate him/her as a worker, do you really want to hang your name on that recommendation? The interview process will not be based on how great a friend this person is, and that is the only thing you are qualified to recommend on.


You should not. It is too risky, and in case he will turn out to be a bad acquisition, you will not have enough credit in your current position to back you up. If this friend will get too offended, tell him, your company just not hiring new people at the moment.

  • Hi Ariel and thanks for your answer. It is a bit brief. Do you think you might be able to edit it and flesh it out a bit more, perhaps backing up some of your statements? Thanks Commented Oct 15, 2014 at 20:55

You shouldn't hesitate to recommend your friend. Whenever I refer someone for a position with my company, I do so in one of three ways. If I worked with this person in the past, I will say something to the effect of:

"I worked with xxxxx in the past, and I professionally recommend him for the position."

You can then continue on to explain some of the desirable professional qualities that you witnessed from your referral. If I never worked with this person, but I know them personally, I would say something to the effect of:

"I never worked with xxxxx in the past, but I can personally recommend him for the position."

After this, you can provide information on the soft skills that you believe make them a good choice for a position. If you've worked with someone, and your friends with them, you can recommend them on both a personal and professional level.

By qualifying your recommendation, you insulate yourself, all while helping your friend.

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