What Makes Candidates Accept a Job Offer?

Are you guilty of reducing your job offers to a salary and a start date? If so, hang your head in shame! You’re doing your clients a disservice. What’s worse, if you boil it all down to salary, you run a serious risk of losing good candidates the moment they receive a higher offer elsewhere or a counteroffer from their current employer.

So, without further ado, here are 6 things to include in your offer that AREN’T money: 


Career progression is equally important, if not more so, than money. Candidates want to know that they’re not walking into something that’ll go nowhere (which is often why they’re leaving their current employer in the first place). Showing that your client is able to provide training opportunities and promotions – a future – is vital. Is there an appraisal system in place? Can you tell them about the career paths similar candidates have taken within the organisation?


I recently saw a stupid meme online that had a picture of a milk carton with the slogan “Job security – missing since Fall 08. If found, please return to everyone in country.” And while it made me chuckle, the issue itself isn’t so funny. Candidates who already have permanent jobs will be risk averse when it comes to taking a new job, which is understandable. Especially if your client isn’t a well-known company, it pays to take the time to assure your candidates that this is a solid opportunity. If you can reference positive news articles about the company or growth figures, that helps.


Here’s another classic-but-true cliché: people don’t leave their jobs, they leave their managers. Lack of respect and recognition may be what put your candidate on the market; they don’t want to end up with another manager who doesn’t respect them. That’s why it’s so important to talk about company culture. Describe the management style, the office, tell them about the team, how they celebrate achievement - give the right impression, that this is a place they’re going to find respect.


So many companies now offer flexible working patterns that the prospect of working for one that doesn’t can be a real turn off. The benefits of flexi-time and working from home, amongst other practices, can make a classic 9-5 day seem like a real burden. If your client offers any kind of flexible working, sell it! Whether it’s to make way for family time, social time or some good old relaxation time, flexible hours are a real consideration for candidates when contemplating a new job.


Everyone’s worst nightmare is dreading their job every morning. Even a good salary can’t compensate for that horrible feeling of sitting around bored all day, every day. Remind candidates who are swayed by higher offers that, initially, a high salary overshadows the opportunity for real challenges, but it won’t be long before the novelty wears off and they’re miserable again. Don’t underestimate the importance of offering interesting projects!


This might not strike everyone as so obvious, but a company’s ethics are becoming more and more important, especially for generation Y. They’ve got a poor reputation for being lazy and entitled, yet many will have done unpaid work experience, internships and volunteering. Why? Often because it’s for a cause they care about. Okay, so unless you’re recruiting in the charity sector, you’re not going to be able to sell a job on this alone. If your client does anything ethical though – keeps a low carbon footprint, does an annual run for charity - then mention it to your gen Y candidates. It could just be the thing that tips the balance!

How to manage a candidate job offer

Kara Shorthouse

Kara is a Digital Marketer based in Glasgow. In her spare time she loves a good gig, ponies and flattering Snapchat filters.

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