Countering the Counteroffer

You finally landed your A level candidate after spending tons of money on advertising, paying in-house recruiters, sifting through hundreds of resumes and months of interviews. The last thing you want to happen is for the candidate to take a counter offer. Here are a few quick tips I have gathered over my 35 years of recruitment.

It all starts in the initial interview with the candidate and their motivation for leaving their current employer. The question that nobody seems to ask…. Have you addressed these issues with your current management? 

The answer you want to hear is yes and there is nothing their management can or want to do about the situation. If the candidate says no they have not, I always recommend that they speak with their management and see if something can be worked out. My reasoning is I would rather have the candidate work out their situation first with their employer instead of looking for another opportunity. Once they have spoken to their employer and the situation can or will not be remedied, then the candidate can move forward and look for new career opportunities.

When your offer comes to the candidate, he or she cannot use the excuse that after giving their 2 weeks notice, their employer asked why they are leaving and the candidate brings up those issues. The employer tells the candidate we can correct those issues, hence the counteroffer.

You see, these days the counteroffer is not always about offering more money to the candidate or a promotion. It’s not about trying to keep a candidate until the employer can replace them. Today, it’s a very tight candidate market. It’s about not losing great long term employee because of issues or concerns that were not shared with their management.

I would rather lose a candidate up front after they discussed their issues and concerns with their current management than losing them to a counteroffer after months have gone by and multiple interviews have taken place.

Unsure how to counter that counteroffer? Contact me today to discuss the best approach for your situation.

By John Long, a Senior Partner at Career Development Partners and 35 year veteran of the engineering recruitment business and author of The Recruiting Minefield.

Ph: 985-710-5555


Travis Jones - CEO of Career Development Partners

Written By Career Development Partners

Career Development Partners is here to provide solutions and impact lives. We do this by serving others by being good stewards of all that is entrusted to our care. CDP strives to have a positive influence on all who we come in contact with and to serve our market with relevant talent management services: Search, leadership development, career transition and practical retirement coaching. Our team has a combined total of over 300 years in Human Resources and Recruiting. We believe that ‘People are Worth the Investment.’

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