Have you ever found the perfect candidate?
If you have, you know the unsettling feeling that they might get away before you can hire them.
If you’ve never found the perfect candidate, you’ve probably found some that were so well suited for the position that you couldn’t image not hiring them.
You may not get to hire your first pick, but here are some key steps to take to ensure that you make the right offer from the beginning.
1. Move fast.
Remember, with a really good candidate time of the essence. It is likely that they are interviewing for other opportunities.
Best practice is to follow up with them on the same day or within two days.
We recommend calling them instead of emailing them so that you can get a sense of their enthusiasm for the position. By following up with them in a timely manner, you are reassuring them that they are your top priority and makes a positive first impression.
2. Be Clear and enthusiastic.
If you think that the candidate is your first choice, let them know that you are impressed by their skills. Don’t play all your cards, but it wouldn’t hurt to build up the excitement in the candidates mind.
3. Offer a raise.
If you think the candidate is really good, make sure you offer more than their current salary.
What will make them want to leave their current position and join your team if you don’t offer a little incentive?
If they are as good of a candidate as you think, you may also find that their current employer is willing to bump their salary to entice them to stay. Be prepared to up your offer if you’re serious about this candidate.
While you might not want to offer a significant increase in their salary, make sure you don’t offer something so small that it comes across as an insult to their worth.
Make the right offer, and make a good first impression.
4. Put the money where your mouth is.
On top of a salary increase, fully explain all of the benefits the candidate will experience while working for your company.
Explain everything clearly, from morale boosting bonuses like weekly lunches, to an incentivised bonus program and health benefits.
Remember to only make promises that you can keep.
5. Try and get a tentative commitment.
Many candidates will naturally ask for time before signing an offer.
Try to ask them what their initial thoughts are about the offer, even if they are asking for time to consider it.
Sometimes they will tell you what their objections to a particular offer are and you can try to find a work around right away. If the candidate hesitates, it might be because he/she is planning to turn down your offer.
The more you can learn about how your first choice of candidates react to your offers, the more you can tweak them in the future and develop the right offer for your specific niche.
6. Put it in writing.
After the interview process, make sure every aspect of your offer is put in writing.
For example, the official job title, base salary, benefits, vacation days, holidays, additional perks offered, etc.
7. Put them at ease.
We have seen many employees turn down offers because they were too scared or too stressed to resign from their current jobs.
We once had a client tell a recruiter that he really wanted to change his job but was worried that he would let his current manager down. Another one told us he didn’t know how to break the news to his boss. He had worked at the company for 5 years and it was his first job, the thought of resigning caused him a lot of stress and anxiety.
It’s usually good to extend a helping hand. Offer to help them prepare a letter of resignation, confirm that they are able to give a full two weeks’ notice to their current employer to tie up any loose ends, etc.
As we mentioned in last week’s blog, employee retention starts with hiring the right candidate. You may not get to hire your first pick, but use these key steps to make the right offer from the beginning.