As a recruiter or hiring manager, there is perhaps nothing more frustrating than extending what you think is a great offer to a top talent candidate, only to have them tell you that they are considering other offers. While you think that this might be a bargaining chip to get you to increase compensation or offer another perk, very often, it is true. Add to this the fact that your other candidates might also be considering multiple offers - this essentially brings you back to square one.
Did you know that the process of closing candidates begins before the offer stage?
While shortening the hiring cycle and building good relationships with candidates are time-tested ways to close your top candidates, these processes might not always work in your favor. Here are some tactics that you can employ to close candidates with multiple offers.
Listen carefully to the candidate
Too often, recruiters and hiring managers are caught up in trying to find out if the candidate is a good fit for their organization. The result is that they fail to ask important questions about what the candidate really wants - what kind of managers they want to work with, the kind of benefits they are looking for, whether flexible hours or the number of vacation days in a year figure at the top of their list. These are aspects which make or break the deal during the offer stage.
It is critical to gauge fit both ways.
Try to garner as many details about the other offers as you possibly can. The key is to find out what really matters to the candidate and pinpoint deciding factors, while not being too intrusive.
Paying attention to these small but important details gives you something to work with during the offer stage.
Treat top talent well - like you treat your customers
Treat your candidates like you would your customers. Just like you entice clients by highlighting your value proposition, captivate your candidates by emphasizing all the amazing things that the position has to offer.
Maintaining good relationships in the conventional sense is not adequate in today's competitive market. What makes you stand out from other companies that have made an offer to the candidate? Apart from treating them like they are already a part of your organization, there are other ways you can achieve this.
Give candidates a tour of your premises. Show them their future workspace and introduce them to prospective colleagues. Let the managers take them out for lunch. Inviting a candidate to the Friday Happy Hour could be a great way to introduce them to your company's culture.
Every candidate has a few key deciding factors, and it is your prerogative to find out what they are and leverage them throughout the recruitment process.
Build your passive candidate base
Despite your best efforts, sometimes you might lose a top talent to a competitor which makes it necessary to have a backup plan. Knowing that you have something to fall back on gives you a sense of confidence that radiates in your negotiations.
Top talent is usually passive. Therefore, it makes sense to build a strategy to develop your passive talent pipeline.
Merely making connections on LinkedIn will not suffice. Try to meet prospective candidates in-person. Find out what career plans they have and what their next dream opportunity looks like. Keep them engaged by periodically reaching out to them with useful industry-specific information in the form of knowledge base articles and/or invitations to seminars or conferences.
Closing top candidates requires time and effort. It is vital to differentiate yourself from your competitors and successfully convey the value you can provide in furthering the careers of candidates.