So, you’ve found the perfect Java Developer, Technical Architect or Big Data Analyst, and furthermore the candidate has sailed through the interview process. It may feel like the hiring process is over, the critical role has been filled and you can focus elsewhere.
But the timing and approach (rights vs wrongs) to extending the job offer is crucial, particularly in a highly competitive IT job market. Do a poor job, and you may start the relationship on the wrong foot or lose the candidate to another opportunity.
Here are some tips:
- Don’t delay. After you make up your mind about someone, extend the offer as quickly as possible. Top talent will have other options and may begin to have doubts about your company or question your intention to make an offer if this is delayed for no apparent reason.
- Lay your cards on the table. Put together an attractive package that includes competitive pay, benefits and other rewards. Within the offer letter drill home the wider benefits, beyond just the financial, of joining your company. Where possible refer back to your interview notes as to what you gleaned about his/her drivers, what they particularly responded to in the role, reasons for wanting to move in the first place.
- Stay connected. Remain in touch while the candidate considers the offer, and after the candidate accepts it.
- Be prepared to negotiate. The market for IT professionals is especially competitive, and top candidates may have multiple offers and decisions to make. Determine in advance how far you’re willing to negotiate salary, financial benefits and other benefits, eg flexible working. Don’t lose sight of what’s appropriate for your company or miss out on a key employee over a minor negotiation point.