Your star candidate receives an offer, you're sure they'll accept, but suddenly they start to drag their heels. You're certain you've done everything right, the candidate is perfect for the job and they wanted it too. But something has changed and the candidate is suddenly reluctant to sign on the dotted line.
Don’t give up yet. There’s still plenty you can do to convince them. Here’s how you convince a candidate that a job offer is the right one and turn them into a bright-eyed new hire.
Create some urgency
Your candidate might have been the first choice for the role but it doesn't mean they were the only good interviewee.
Remind your candidate there's a time limit on the job offer as other (more committed) candidates are still waiting to hear if they were successful. This way, you'll create urgency and remind your candidate that the job is highly sought-after.
Ask probing questions
Not every person will buy into urgency as a reason to accept a job offer, so put your detective hat on and ask some probing questions.
For many candidates, whatever is holding them back can be easily resolved but you need to identify problem first. Perhaps it’s the cost of the commute, or it could be a personal reason. The point is, you can’t resolve the issue if you don’t know what it is.
Use client feedback
We know you’re a charismatic, likeable recruiter and candidates love working with you. But what about the hiring manager? Perhaps the candidate isn’t quite as taken with them.
Talk things over with the client and get a good idea of what they like about the candidate - then pass that along. Often, things get lost in translation and people don’t make the right impression. You might find that some good, constructive feedback from the client is enough to push the candidate to pick up a pen, sign the contract, and accept the job.
Get to the bottom of the problem
You’ve asked some probing questions, you’ve shared client feedback with the candidate, and they’re still not convinced. Time for some tough love. Be direct and ask them: "What’s going on?" Tell them how frustrating it is to put all this effort in for someone who just doesn’t seem interested.
Ask them what changed? After all, they applied for the job, they’ve gone through at least one interview, and they’ve got an offer. A lot has gone right in that story, so what’s going wrong now? The likelihood is that the candidate knows the answer to that question, so push for some info that you can work with.
Know when to say goodbye
When all’s said and done, there are times when enough is enough. If your candidate is excessively delaying the process and preventing another candidate getting a chance, you need to pull the plug. Give them the the choice: take the job now or walk away.
Remember, a star candidate is only a star candidate when you can place them. Don’t become too invested with one candidate and don’t be afraid to move on either.
If you want more tips and tricks, our eBook will take you through how to manage a candidate job offer step by step: