The offer stage is the beginning of the final stages in a hiring process. When you’ve arrived at this point you are eager to wrap up all the loose ends and get your newest employee up and running. It’s easy to want to rush through this final stage. Don’t. It’s critical to be just as thorough at this point as you were with all the other stages in the hiring process.
Consider the following scenario:
From the very beginning of the interview process the chemistry and culture fit were spot-on between the hiring manager and the candidate – we’ll call her Mary. The hiring manager’s entire team all agreed, Mary would be a great fit within the organization. Follow up meetings confirmed the competencies and character pieces were also in alignment with the objectives of the role and company. Mary was definitely the ONE they wanted and needed on the team.
One might think the hard work is done. Arguably they may be right. The hiring team found their candidate and she seems eager about working with for them. However the work is not done. The deal is not sealed. Emotions run very high during the offer stage and believe me, the details count!
8 Mistakes That Can Ruin a Job Offer
As an Executive Recruiting firm we help facilitate and negotiate an offer. We start with verbal agreement and then provide a written agreement to the candidate from our client company. Unfortunately we’ve gained first-hand experience about how the offer stage can be spoiled. Here are some mistakes that can make an offer less than appealing .
- Not expressing excitement to have them join the team – It is good and right to make the candidate feel really welcomed.
- Getting the contact information incorrect on the offer letter – Double-check the spelling of the candidate’s name, address etc. Careless mistakes send a message that your personal information really isn’t important.
- Forgetting to add the start date, who they will report to, title of the position – All the details should be clear so the candidate feels you are truly prepared for him or her to join the organization.
- Not using company letter head – This is a professional document and should represent the company well.
- Not providing a date and time that the extended offer expires unless signed – Don’t leave it open ended. Set clear expectations.
- Adding any contingent factors of employment such as drug test, reference checks, background check etc. – It’s very awkward to get this information after the offer letter is signed.
- Not attaching benefit information and costs to the employee – Don’t make the candidate ask for such important information.
- Forgetting to add who to call along with contact information regarding any questions – Make it easy on the candidate to get his or her questions answered. You want this transition to be as smooth as possible.
Details to Include In an Offer Letter
There are many other details that should be outlined in the offer letter, depending on the level of position. These details become even more critical if there are legal counsel requirements. Here is a list of recommended terms to include:
- Position title
- Cash Compensation, exempt/non-exempt
- Bonus / Commission potential
- Employees Benefits and when the employee is eligible for benefits
- Stock and other possible benefits and how awarded
- Employment “relations,” i.e., how to handle proprietary information and company property
Don’t rush the offer stage. Despite your certainty about a candidate, there are many details that can be a big turn off if missed. The candidate’s opinion of the company should only heighten as he or she gets closer to joining the organization. Don’t blow it by skimping on the details.