Bold applied for my emphasis.
The reality is that in the same week I get an e-mail from a stranger, I'm probably going to get a couple of e-mails from a FOAF (friend-of-a-friend). These are all known entities to me. I know how the person got my name. I know that if the friend gave out my contact info, the friend also did at least a nominal screening, since my friends don't just dish leads for fun. I know that I can follow up with my friend to get information on the applicant (although many times, a friend has contacted me first to ask permission or even to promote the candidate).
The simple fact that the candidate has passed these barriers has eliminated many questions. The candidates I talk to have been filtered. This saves me time and increases my chances of hiring a great worker.
I suggest you click through to read the full article here There are other good tips in the remainder of the article.