It can take months to find the perfect candidate but even after the acceptance letter has been signed and a start date agreed upon, nothing is for certain, until they are through the doors on that first day. This is especially true of a candidate coming to you from another company – typically a company that is now unhappy over the loss of a good employee.
Often times, these other employers, already have a strategy for handling this very type of situation and are likely prepared to counteroffer in an effort to change their employee’s decision to leave. And nowadays, employers are far more sophisticated about counteroffers than in days gone by. They used to be based mostly on compensation, but companies are now addressing these issues in a more global way, by looking at everything from different work assignments to title changes.
Understanding a candidate’s motivations for a career move is vital to fending off the threat of a potential counteroffer. If someone is leaving their current employer for money, they are likely to stay for it, too. If you want to avoid losing a new hire to a counteroffer, consider the following:
- Discuss the possibility of a counteroffer with the candidate during the interview process
- Find out more about any other opportunities a candidate is exploring
- Maintain regular contact with the candidate through their notice time
- Send links to articles or share a recently published annual report
- Share company updates and department developments
- Arrange a lunch with their new boss or colleagues
- Schedule “meet-the-team” meetings immediately
For you it might just be another hire, but for the candidate it is a life-changing event – a new route to work, new coworkers, new places and new routines. With this comes some degree of uncertainty, fear, and apprehension. Conveying a genuine interest in the candidate and making them feel like they are already a part of the team, even before their start date, can reduce the temptation to follow up with other recruiters or go on any remaining interviews.