Correct Ways Companies Extend Job Offers to Candidates

As a functional leader, you’ve most certainly experienced the pain of having an unfilled position within your team.  Whether the result of growth, vacancy due to promotion or performance, that unfilled position has put an extra workload on you and every other member of your team for far too long. 

After posting the position internally and seeking out employee referrals, perhaps you’ve engaged with a trusted and capable recruiter to identify the perfect addition to your team.  You dedicate your time and team resources to diligently interview candidates, weaning down the pool until you have consensus on a finalist. Now you have to close the candidate!  In the current candidate-driven market, extending job offers is a process every bit as important as the recruiting and interviewing itself — there is no deal until the deal is done.

Know What Matters to Top Candidates

A 2018 Global Talent Trends study by Mercer revealed three key components that matter most to candidates. The study compiled data from 800 business executives and 1,800 HR leaders, including 5,000-plus employees throughout 21 industries and 44 countries around the world.

According to this study, three top things that matter to candidates include permanent workplace flexibility, a commitment to health/well-being and working with a purpose. Find a way to position your company by checking off those three essential components and get ready to welcome top talent to your company!

Quick Take: We’ve experienced clients selling the wrong reasons for candidates to accept an offer.  For example, don’t present health benefits to candidates who wouldn’t even be opting to use company health benefits. Do your research. Know the market, the area and what matters to the individual candidate. Make an offer that will appeal to the candidate based upon the research as well as their priorities.

Next, Make the Candidate Feel Wanted

This is an intangible, yet often undervalued and underused aspect to attract top talent. If your candidate’s already employed, you must make the candidate feel more wanted than their current employer does. Compensation means more than just a base salary. Explain to your candidate how they will benefit by taking an offer with you will benefit them in the long term.  Know how to explain incentive bonuses, deferred compensation, 401k matching and other retirement contributions. In addition, explain tuition reimbursement programs, paid holidays, paid time off, training, flex time, as well as future growth opportunities.

Quick Take: Money talks but making a candidate feel wanted can make them walk away from their current employer and into your office.  Let them know it’s more than just a base salary but how they will benefit long term.

Then, Offer Competitive Compensation

Research your market, your competition, and your candidate to ensure your offer is commensurate with their talent. Make a compelling offer, including benefits, perks, schedule flexibility, paid time off and more (see above Quick Takes). Don’t bother low-balling a top candidate because you’ve worked too hard to get them to the door: open with a top offer. Genuine, competitive compensation that recognizes top talent increases the odds they will accept the offer.

Quick Take: Game respects game. Know your stuff and make sure the offer recognizes the talent.  We’ve coached many clients over the years to make their best offer their first offer. If you don’t make your best offer, somebody else will.

Finally, Streamline the Hiring Process and Stay Connected

Offers should be extended to the candidate, accompanied by an HR Representative to answer specific details about pay and benefits. You should make your job offers by phone rather than waiting to get the candidates back into your office. This is your chance to make a final impression and explain why this is a good match and how excited you are for them to join your team.  Make a competitive offer to top talent, and stay in touch. Then, find respectful ways to reinforce your enthusiasm to help seal the deal.

Quick Take: Make the job offer swiftly, clearly and with enthusiasm.   With top candidates, even a short delay can cost you the best candidate. Communicate clearly throughout the interview process to keep top talent from escaping.


For more information on staffing, extending job offers and hiring a top qualified team, reach out to Quovis here!