Offering a job to a great candidate is one of the great pleasures of recruitment. After the hard work you’ve put into your job search – from advertising the role to interviewing candidates and selecting your perfect match – the final step can be rewarding.
But a successful job offer requires more effort than might appear on the surface. Increasing competition for talent has added more urgency to the recruitment process, which becomes acute as you reach the job offer stage. In a tight labour market, the best candidates are likely to be fielding multiple job offers. Employers who can present a personalised job offer at speed will have a competitive advantage.
Delivering an irresistible job offer to candidates is made possible with good market research, communication and a level of operational efficiency that allows your business to strike fast while the iron is hot. Preparation can also place you in a stronger position to help a candidate avoid accepting a counteroffer from their current employer.
Read on to find out the key aspects of a great job offer that candidates will find difficult to refuse!
Prepare in Advance
Before a role is advertised, some essential groundwork is necessary. Start by working out the budget you have available for a particular position and secure approval for the salary from your leadership stakeholders.
Determine all the skills and types of experience that are non-negotiable for the role and make sure the official job description matches any job advertisement you make.
Completing these tasks upfront will save a great deal of time at the negotiation stage. Everyone will be on the same page, making the job offer process as fast and smooth as possible.
Going silent – even for a day or two – can cost you a candidate. A quality candidate will easily abandon the process if they don’t hear from you quickly enough, especially if they have more than one job offer to choose from.
To avoid this scenario, it’s important to have a strict policy of keeping candidates in the loop. Let people know when they can expect the next update from you, regardless of where they are in the process. If you’re working with an agency, ensure your consultant checks in with the candidate and relays your updates to them.
Reference checks can also drag out the process sometimes, so be prepared to make a verbal job offer to the candidate that is conditional on the outcome of those checks.
Understand the Candidate’s Motivations
Using the job interview to discover what matters most to the candidate will allow you to make a customised offer. In the interview, ask the candidate what non-salary benefits are important to them and make a note of their response. When the time comes to tweak the job offer for a chosen candidate, you will be able to give them a tailored package. For example, a junior jobseeker might prefer access to discounts or additional holiday leave, while an older candidate with family responsibilities might view flexible hours as the deal-breaker.
You should also seek to understand why someone is considering a new job. If a candidate isn’t happy with their current role or boss, this gives you some leverage to negotiate with them if they receive a counter-offer. On the flip side, if it’s because they are feeling challenged by their daily tasks or are struggling with work/life balance, you can build an offer that is more appealing than their current job.
Create the Best Possible Package
A powerful tool for preparing job offers is to research current salaries in the market, via internal and external benchmarking. While the specifics of benchmarking may vary depending on your business requirements, engaging a recruitment partner can provide your organisation with instant access to current market data and save significant time.
It’s also wise to create a package that includes perks such as flexible working hours, remote working, extra holiday leave, health and wellness programs, learning and development and access to discounted memberships.
You can also consider including a salary ‘buffer’ that is slightly higher than the standard offer, as this can make all the difference between netting an excellent candidate or a mediocre one.
Having a strong technical framework for the job offer is important, but the art of persuasion is often what gets a candidate over the line.
To make the offer compelling, present the offer first by phone. Explain why they’re the preferred person for the role and what you believe they will bring to the company. Articulate the reasons why you’re looking forward to working with them. Then, highlight how the offer is customised to their preferences. Follow up on this phone call with an email outlining the offer in writing.
As part of presenting the offer, get an agreement from the candidate on a timeframe for accepting it. We recommend giving the candidate no more than two to three days to consider the offer and respond to you.
Securing a new hire is an exciting moment and feels especially rewarding after a competitive recruitment process. To pull it off, keep track of all the moving parts that need to be working correctly especially before you enter the negotiations. Remember to incorporate the candidate’s preferences into the offer to win them over. With research and expert advice, you can tailor a job offer to a candidate instead of using a one-size-fits-all approach.
Seeking guidance from recruitment specialists with detailed knowledge of the jobs market and current salaries will give your job offers consistency and clarity. As a Queensland recruitment agency specialising in professional and trades roles, Your Resourcing regularly provides employers with tailored advice on how to make a winning offer. To find out how we can find your next hire, get in touch with our friendly and dedicated team.