Close Counters OF THE WORST kind
We've all been there.....you've identified your 'perfect' candidate and you have your heart set on this person joining your Software company.
Months of work in searches, sifting through CVs, initial calls, face to face interviews, not to mention trying to get everyone who needs to be involved to schedule some time into their already hectic diary, to meet this person so that as many people can agree to the hire as possible. After all it's an investment and the cost of getting it wrong is huge.
Maybe 6 to 8 weeks later, you have your final 3 candidates. Almost everyone is in agreement, (well you can't please everyone), HR then spend time on putting the final package together and you make the offer. How exciting!
And then this happens.....they accept a counter offer from their current employer...
"Noooooo!!! " :-(
Your head hangs low, your frustration is obvious - you officially hate hiring!
So how can you avoid this happening?
Well it's never an absolute given they won't take a counter offer, candidates do deviate from the truth at times, but in most cases, you can avoid it. Here are just a few techniques you can use to avoid being in this situation again:
- Find out at interview the real reasons driving and motivating a candidate to talk to you. You can then remind them of these reasons throughout the process when you need to. If it's purely monetary, they are likely to accept a counter offer.
- Find out what motivates head-hunted candidates to be open to a move. It usually involves a change of direction, a wider leadership remit or a promotion. Increased salary shouldn't be a big driver for them.
- Talk to a candidate early on about the possibility of a counter offer and how it might happen. If it does, the candidate will be able to say you told them this could happen and any flattery they feel will have been denied. I generally like to remind candidates that their worth shouldn't only be perceived once they say they are leaving.
- Make paperwork turnaround a priority. Send the offer letter the same day as the verbal offer if possible. The time between acceptance and dispatch of paperwork is a danger zone - this is the time they can change their mind, receive other offers and secure counter offers.
- Keep up communication post offer stage. Regular emails, calls to keep the candidate up to speed on new initiatives, ask their advice or just say 'hello'. A lunch before the start date further reinforces your investment in them and their investment in their future.
There are more so please do get in touch if you would like to discuss this further.
Until next time,