There was a time, when HR Managers conducted most of their interviews confidently in the belief that an offer of employment, if extended, would likely be accepted. Today, however, this once-bedrock assumption is no longer universally true. According to a recent study conducted by a leading recruitment firm, as many as 35 to 50 percent of all job offers are now routinely rejected.
What do you think happened? Well, the race for talented employees has heated up considerably over the past several decades. Due to globalisation, industry’s growth has exceeded all expectations, so that the demand for qualified workers often outpaces the supply of willing applicants and this happens despite the current credit crunch. Perhaps most importantly, today’s employees place much more focus on finding meaningful and fulfilling work.
It’s still possible to attract and recruit the right candidates – it just takes a bit more forethought and planning than it might have in the past. The challenge lies in figuring out what’s most important to your incoming hire – and then devising a comprehensive offer that meets those needs.
The old “one-size-fits-all” approach to job offers just doesn’t work in today’s hyper-competitive labour market. To win the talent wars, you’ve got to take a long, hard look at your organization from the outside in and figure out exactly what you’ve got to offer to today’s up-and-comers. As most candidates will check your websites, news paper or internet reviews to find out more about your organisation. They will even ask questions by calling the organisation and most would like to know, for example, if you were an organisation who were a holder of “An Investor in People Award”. Here are some guidelines to help you get started.
* Don’t make an offer too soon:
Overly-eager HR Managers who make an offer for a position too early in the process can scare off candidates who want to take their time and fully consider all of their options. Even if you’ve got a strong gut feeling that you’re looking at “the one,” take your time and really showcase all of your organization’s features and benefits before you extend a formal offer.
* Money’s not everything:
There’s long been a mindset among many HR or Hiring managers that increased compensation is the best way to ensure that a job offer will be accepted. Salary is a significant part of the equation, to be sure, but increasingly – especially among younger workers – it’s only one part of a bigger picture. Try to avoid focusing so much on salary issues that you overlook other factors.
* Position the job as part of their goals for career success:
During the interview process, you had the opportunity to learn a lot about what the candidate is looking for in a long-term career. Now it is your chance to emphasize the way that this role will fit in perfectly with their plans. Most candidates would be very happy to achieve the organizational goals as long as they achieve their own personal goals on the way. Don’t forget to mention the potential for future growth and career development opportunities, as well.
There are some benefits that can’t be quantified in terms of salary or status, but still hold enormous appeal for some candidates. Is your organizational culture tightly-knit and informal? Surely, I don’t expect to you to offer something to the incoming hire as an exception to others, but things like, health care insurance, Gym memberships etc are very common benefits. Instead of mentioning all the benefits, don’t forget to highlight the ones’ which overlap, confluence and will resonate with your candidate and emphasize them when you’re extending a formal offer.
It may not be as easy to find qualified, willing applicants as it used to be, but with just a little thought and preparation, it’s simple to devise a smart, targeted job offer that even the most selective candidate will find it hard to turn down.
Image Courtesy: Summit Hill Recruiting Inc