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Launching the Care Friends App

Hello and welcome! We hope you’re here because you’re about to embark on your Care Friends journey and you want to know how to get started. If so, you’ve come to the right place. Here you’ll find everything you need to successfully introduce and launch the Care Friends app to your staff.

We’ve done the research and it’s official: employee referral is the best way to get (and keep) brilliant staff. And it’s no secret that you need brilliant staff to be a brilliant organisation!

Please watch this 5 minute ‘quick intro’ presentation so you have a good background on why your company has chosen Care Friends!

If you follow this guide step-by-step, you will be on your way to:

Better quality candidates who stay

Tap into a new source of talent

A more engaged workforce

Let’s get started

We know launching Care Friends may seem a little daunting, but there’s no need to worry – we’ve created this step-by-step guide that will ensure success. Start by taking a look at the launch overview below, then scroll down to find out more. There are links you can click on to take you to specific resources too.

We’ve got loads of great resources in our library to support you before, during and after your launch.  I would suggest heading straight to our Launch Guide Calendar to get you started. This calendar separates tasks for the launch into marketing/comms and portal/admin to help you delegate jobs for the launch!


By now you should have done some housekeeping on your portal. Your Super Portal User will have received an email series directing them on how to set the basics up, it’s important to get this done before you launch to your staff. These things may not seem super interesting but they play a big part in helping your staff and candidates to get a more personalised and branded experience whilst maximising the efficiency of your referral program. Click here to find the Portal set-up guide.

If you have any questions you can get in touch with us using the live chat function on the bottom right of your portal screen, or by emailing [email protected] and we’ll be happy to help with anything you need.

Ensure your senior team and managers are fully aware of the benefits and excited to launch Care Friends.

Choose some Champions! These are a handful of enthusiastic, ideally reasonably tech-savvy employees, who have regular contact with Care staff and will start using the app ahead of everyone else. In doing this they’ll help spread the word, and become your app ambassadors. We’ve created a Champions PowerPoint to help you present to your chosen people.

Have a think about how you can incentivise your staff. You know them best, so you know what will work, but to get you started we’ve collated our incentive ideas that you can easily tailor to your team. We find some gentle competition always works well!  Ask your Customer Success Representative for more details.

Have a look at our launch toolkit and choose the comms you plan to use. There are some excellent email templates that you can send out to staff as well as quick presentation videos etc.

A figure to aim towards is to have about 50% – 80% of your team having downloaded the Care Friends app within a couple of weeks of launch.

We have some sites with 50% of staff using the app by the end of week one.

As a comparison, with other (non-care sector) companies, employee referral apps can be very successful with just 40% or fewer of employees participating (and that’s after an extended period). This is because the current baseline is low, with less than 10% of staff referring using a traditional paper-based scheme.

Pre-launch communication tasks

Use our toolkit to plan communications around your launch and decide which resources you would like to use and when. . You could also customise and / or make your own – just keep the content short and snappy in order to engage, and hold people’s attention.

Don’t forget to use all of your communications channels to post about the upcoming launch. It’s important to build as much excitement and intrigue around the app ahead of your launch as possible.


Are you ready?

I would suggest looking through the toolkit and write a quick calendar plan. Let’s go through the launch planning calendar, building up to launch day.


Week 1: Prep-work. Confirm your launch date, review this launch guide. Review the available comms. Choose which comms to use and adapt them to your business. Engage site Champions, Managers, Execs and other stakeholders who will be helping you before and during the launch. Source message/video from Exec(s) or CEO pushing Care Friends for Launch Day Comms. Decide on any incentives for sign up. Get everything ready to go.

Week 2:  Internal ‘teaser’ comms and introduction email/communications across the whole company. Ensure Super Portal User is ready to go with Launch day jobs *invite staff via the portal  * have jobs added

Week 3:  Launch week. Beef up the comms. Use multiple channels and provide more info about Care Friends than the teasers.

LAUNCH DAY: Send comms to staff with manager message, any incentives and ensure employees are invited to download the app.


Ask some employees, perhaps your Champions and all the managers, to download and use the app a couple of weeks ahead of the launch. It’s critical that they (and you) are familiar with it so they can encourage and help others during the actual launch. If you haven’t already done so, get to know the app yourself. Your Super User can tick whom you wish to invite early and push out the notification/invite to their phone, easy!

Customising our communications

Whether it’s an email or a poster you’re creating, keep these things in mind when creating content:

  • Time is precious so keep it short and sweet
  • Communicate on a ‘need to know’ basis
  • Titles and headers should be catchy
  • Explain ‘what’s in it for me?’
  • Speak their language
  • Make it visually engaging

Communication Channels

You’d be surprised how many different communication channels you could use to introduce the organisation to Care Friends. We recommend using a variety of channels. Here we list some options. Get creative!

  • Newsletter
  • Intranet
  • Weekly Team Meetings
  • “State of the Nation” meetings
  • One-on-Ones
  • Social Media
  • Internal Message system (Facebook for Business, WhatsApp, Messenger etc)
  • Text Message
  • Email
  • Screensavers
  • Posters in strategic places
  • Memos
  • Pamphlets in the lunchroom
  • Postcards to employees’ home
  • A letter with the payslip
  • Video messages
  • Direct phone call

There are several ways to add an additional incentive for your existing staff to download the app and register to use it:

  1. Time-bound launch bonus: Offer a small number of points for everyone who downloads the app and registers to use it. Include a time-limit for extra impact (cost effective, not all staff will refer so those free points may never be cashed in)
  2. Hold a sign-up prize draw: Put everyone who downloads the app into a hat and offer a larger number of Care Friends bonus points as prizes.  You could offer first, second and third prize at the end of week one, or draw one winner every week for the first month. There is a simple way to arrange this in the portal, just ask your Care Friends contact.
  3. Channel all future rewards via the app: Link Care Friends bonus points with other rewards such as employee of the month or annual staff bonus. This is a both a great incentive for staff to sign up, even if they’re not sure if they will refer, AND it streamlines your reward and recognition process. This is proving to be really popular.

Remember, as app users have to reach a minimum number of points before they can redeem, you will only pay out a launch bonus for those members of staff who go on to use the app for referrals or who earn rewards for other things. So staff can’t register and immediately claim just the launch bonus.


Things to keep in mind:

  1. Hopefully you’ve spent the week ahead of your big launch building interest and intrigue with your chosen teaser comms. Keep them coming today!
  2. Announce the ways you’ve decided to incentivise your team to share jobs and recommend you as an employer. Don’t forget, everybody loves a competition!
  3. Remember that face-to-face is always the best way to communicate and it’s critical for your success, so if there are some people that can’t make your launch meeting(s), take the time to follow up, ideally scheduling separate face-to-face meetings with them.
  4. Ask your boss to kick off the launch by attending the first meeting, or recording a short video for everyone to watch, for example. It means a lot to staff to see the head of an organisation on board, engaged and backing your campaign.
  5. Let your Champions know what you expect of them, target wise, and reward them for their hard work.
  6. Don’t forget to share your results and thoughts from the first day with a new incentive. This will keep people engaged!
  7. Ensure you are aligned with your Super User and their tasks have been completed, especially *invite employees on launch day  *have jobs activated in the portal.

Get the launch right and your staff will feel encouraged and incentivised to visit their app store and download the Care Friends app. This is a really important factor in the success of the app.

A figure to aim towards is to have about 50% – 80% of your team having downloaded the Care Friends app within a couple of weeks of launch.

We have some sites with 50% of staff using the app by the end of week one.

As a comparison, with other (non-care sector) companies, employee referral apps can be very successful with just 40% or fewer of employees participating (and that’s after an extended period). This is because the current baseline is low, with less than 10% of staff referring using a traditional paper-based scheme.


Ensuring Care Friends is a success takes a little work and needs regular reminders. There are some easy ways you can get some quick wins:

  1. Widen the net – inevitably you won’t get to tell all your staff face-to-face, so be sure to follow the live launch with a multi-channel awareness campaign, sharing early successes using your regular comms channels. You can get regular updates on the number of jobs shared etc. and this should engage your team.
  2. Be sure to send the ‘magic link’ out in your digital comms after launch. Ask your Super User for this. It is a link that employees can click on to register for the app without having to bother the recruitment team. Employees will need the link to be able to download the app after launch.
  3. Ensure you get feedback on the app from your team and look at ways you can incentivise your team further or add some fun elements to make it even more of a success.
  4. Monitor engagement with the app and respond to comments. We’re always here to help with ideas and we want to hear your feedback!

Don’t forget how important it is to keep reminding people that haven’t signed up about the app. It may be tricky to win some staff over, with some saying they don’t know anyone, or that they don’t use social media. Remember to remind them that the app isn’t just about referrals, it’s also a way for them to receive recognition for other good things they do and to get notifications about opportunities etc. Whether they like the idea at first or not, it’s definitely worth them downloading it and having a look.

We recommend asking new staff to download the app as soon as they accept the job, or at the latest, during induction training. There are a few ways that you can do this:

  • Allocating 10 mins of your induction time on their first day for a quick overview of Care Friends – imagine that new network you can tap into!
  • Sending them a personal invite to their phone via the Care Friends Portal, how could they resist earning cash!
  • If applicable let them know this is not just a referral app, that you may be using it for bonus rewards aswell!
  • Create a brochure with your companies unique ‘magic link’ to sign up to the app in your on-boarding pack.


For help or more information please email i[email protected], or use the live chat in the bottom right of your screen.