In 2016, the Jordanian government began issuing work permits for Syrian refugees through the Ministry of Labor and cooperating labour associations. Despite its successes on some fronts, reliance on intermediaries and other aspects of the system have compromised access to meaningful work for segments of the Syrian refugee population. While nepotism, in particular, plays a functional role by matching employers and employees, weakened networks within the refugee population tend to lead to unevenly distributed benefits. Recommendations include policy adjustments to expand the types of work for which permits may be provided, strengthening the role of employment centres, and limiting the scope of control current employers exert over permit holders.