How do you make a job offer so the candidate wants to work for you and no one else?
Some employers might believe that once you’ve got to the stage of making a job offer, all the hard work is done. Well, you couldn’t be more wrong.
The highly skilled candidate you want to employ might have other offers on the table already, or you may not have impressed them enough – it’s a two way street! So, how do you make a job offer that wins out over all the others?
As a hiring manager or small business owner, you have to be quick. The talent that you want could accept another job offer any minute, so make sure you let them know that you’re interested within a week of their last interview.
Companies often let the candidate know that they are interested first via telephone. This is a powerful tool because you can express your interest as a person, not a voiceless email. You can also have a discussion about the terms of your offer and answer any questions or concerns the candidate may have.
Once you secure that verbal confirmation that they are interested, or better yet, want the job, you have to prepare the formalities: the Job Offer Letter usually sent by email, (or it’s built-in if you’re using the DigitalGrads platform!)
All the information
The Job Offer Letter is something you can stress over if you haven’t got a standard one, wasting time and resources on getting it perfect. There are hundreds of email templates out there, but we like our new free Job Offer Letter Template.
Make sure you let the candidate know their official start date, hours, and any entitlements such as sick pay or vacation time. If you’re hiring for a short-term internship with DigitalGrads, let the candidate know their pay and if there is an opportunity to extend their time with you.
If they have to come back to you with more questions, your job offer letter may not be giving them enough information.
Often companies write in an overly formal, stuffy manner when making job offers. This is an exciting time, so let your enthusiasm come across and save the formalities for the employment contract!
Don’t be afraid of expressing how much you’re looking forward to working with them, how great their skillset is and what a perfect fit they will be for the company. A good start, where both parties are excited will pay dividends in the long run.
We all have busy lives, so sometimes you have to give people a little nudge to get things done. Include a time limit on accepting the offer to bring about a sense of urgency in the candidate. Give them a few days to really consider what they are accepting, and don’t feel discouraged if they don’t get back to you immediately after your initial email.
We often advise employers to offer the candidate a phone call to run through the details once the offer has been sent out if you haven’t already done that.
Reject the rest 😢
This process is supposed to be fast so be aware that in these final stages there are candidates waiting eagerly in the wings and it’s not fair to keep them waiting for too long. Let the unsuccessful candidates know that you have made your decision – for guidance on how to communicate with unsuccessful candidates, see our How to give constructive interview feedback post.
Prepare for the worst
We’ve seen it many times at DigitalGrads, the strongest candidates are often in high demand and have been sitting many interviews for many companies, so it’s vital you have a back-up plan if the candidate politely turns you down.
Ask for their reason for choosing another position, ask if there is anything you could do to swing it your way, and otherwise, thank them for their time.
Ideally you will have another candidate waiting in the wings who is also awesome.
Think about the future
If your hiring process has been stressful and chaotic and you haven’t got a second candidate, evaluate it.
Have you got to re-run the recruitment process? Pay to advertise again? Spend hours sifting CVs again? Put work on hold that the new candidate would have started doing?
You may be wasting time and resources when other people could do the dirty work for you, (like us 😀 )
The DigitalGrads team are recruitment experts. We don’t just provide an innovative hiring platform, we also act as a recruitment service for hundreds of tech and media businesses across the UK. We post job advertisements, curate fantastic candidate shortlists, arrange the interview process and help issue feedback for you.
If your recruitment process has been giving you a headache, consider letting us help you.