How to ensure a candidate says “yes” to your job offer

5 minutes | Ellisa Monk | Article | Recruiting Permanent hiring Temporary and contract hiring

People shaking hands

We are experiencing one of the hardest markets we have faced for years when it comes to recruiting the right people to work for your company. Candidates now have more choices and are capitalizing by conducting extensive searches for the perfect position for them. Many candidates are not entertaining sideways moves at all. They feel this is the market in which to capitalize and gain a promotion.  

As we saw in our 2022 salary guide, 53% of employers are looking to increase full-time headcount and 65% of the workforce are seriously considering leaving their jobs. The increase of jobs available as well as the movement in the market has created this extremely competitive market. This has been compounded by the fact that many candidates did not receive wage increases, bonuses or opportunity for promotion during the initial stages of the pandemic when many employers were understandably keeping a close eye on overheads.   

If you are recruiting right now, you may have faced a variety of situations such as a candidate interviewing at multiple places, accepting another offer, or the person you want receiving a counter offer from their current employer. This can be very frustrating and time consuming, making hiring the right person more challenging than ever. 

So how can you increase the likelihood of securing the person you want to hire and limit the chances of them taking another role over yours?  Re-evaluating how you interview could be the key. Our top tips on interviewing people to successfully hire in a competitive market are as follows:

1. Prior to the interview, prepare the candidate on what to expect 

Interviews are stressful and by giving the candidate information about what to expect beforehand will help lower their anxiety, allow the person to be their true self during the interview and give you a better picture of the person you could be hiring. Information such as details on who they are meeting and why, how to get to the interview, what the agenda of the meeting will look like and an idea of what questions to expect can all help lower a person’s stress levels and increase the level of interest in the role before you have even completed the interview. 


2. Take time to build a relationship with the candidate you are interviewing 

After the last 2 years, candidates have lost the connection they once had with their employers due to remote working and lots of change within their company. When deciding to take a job or not, people access who they will work for first before the company itself. So spend some time building rapport professionally by disclosing information about your role, your job and why you work there too – this will set a positive tone for the rest of the interview. 


3. Sell the job 

The ideal scenario whenever you are interviewing is that the candidate leaves the interview 100% wanting to work for you, regardless of if you think they are the right person for the job. So once rapport has been set and you have spent a short amount of time asking them some questions about their skills and experience, sell the job! Be upfront and honest with information and details about the job, the opportunity, and the pros and cons of working for the company. This way you’ll answer all the questions the candidate may have about the position before they even ask.  

Providing full disclosure builds trust and don’t hesitate to tell the candidate why you think their skills or experience would make them great for the role. This will make them feel valued and allow them to leave the interview with a positive experience and wanting more. Many candidates will be interested in understanding potential opportunities for career advancement so be sure to outline these during the interview.  


4. Consider the candidate’s experience and what they will require to make a decision 

Some people can make decisions very quickly about their next job. Others are cautious and need time to build the confidence to make the decision on accepting a new job. As the potential employer, it’s a good idea in today’s market to take this into consideration when going through the interview process. To attract people that change jobs regularly, moving quickly through the 1st and 2nd stage of the interview, with a direct offer is critical. You’ll also want to use lots of positive language, telling them how great they would be for the role, as this will likely impress the person to accept your job over others.  

On the other hand, if the person has typically worked at companies for long periods of time, they may need time and more touch points to gather the information to make a calculated decision. In between interviews call them, take them for coffee or lunch, show them around the office, introduce them to significant people within your company, and show them examples of what you’re working on if you can.  


5. When offering the candidate the job, do it yourself 

The offer is an important step in the process, and again an opportunity to build a relationship, sell the job and consider the candidate’s experience needed to make a decision. Book a meeting and let the candidate know you want to meet to offer them the job – ideally face to face if permitted. Booking a meeting to do this ensures the person is fully engaged in the conversation with no distractions, and is prepared on what to expect. Be ready with all the details of the job offer itself, as well as all the information they need about the role. Be sure to give them time to ask questions, and find out how they are feeling about the offer. Also ask them if there is anything that is making them anxious about moving jobs. This creates an opportunity to help them if they have any apprehensions about the process. 


6. After the candidate has accepted the role – keep in touch 

One the person has signed on the dotted line with a start date confirmed, don’t get too comfortable. Anything can happen with your prospective employee that could turn their head. A company they previously applied to could contact them, they could get headhunted by a company out of the blue, they could get a later counter offer from their current employer, or they could just get cold feet. 

 Your job now is to continue to build a relationship and trust to ensure the candidate is committed to your role. So, include them in team communications, send them information about tasks they will be responsible for, and introduce them to other people they would be working with. If timing permits this would be an ideal time to take the candidate for lunch in order to continue building upon the positive rapport while they work their notice. This way the candidate can start to feel informed and like they’re a part of the team so they are ready for their first day on the job 

About this author

Ellisa Monk
Senior Vice President, West

During Ellisa’s career, she has built and developed recruitment teams across various industries, business units and geographies. She is passionate about people’s careers and continuously improving performance, processes, and efficiencies. Presently, Ellisa’s job as Senior Vice President, West Region involves overseeing highly talented recruitment teams in Calgary and Vancouver. She is also responsible for the contract business strategy nationally and is a member of the Canadian Management Board.

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