The technical recruiting world in the last few months has been eye opening. The truth is that the current job market, at least in technology, is as competitive as ever. If you haven’t hired this year yet you need to read this article because things have drastically changed.
Across the country, different markets typically have very different market trends for a similar type of skill set. As an example, it might be much easier to find a C++ embedded candidate in San Jose than it would be in Philadelphia because of the type of companies located in either city that attract a certain type of skilled workers. Today it doesn’t matter if there’s a plethora of companies that employ a certain type of candidate or there’s only a few, the same blanket of frustration is draped over every metropolitan city in their hunt to find an appropriate candidate. You don’t have to be desperate to know that it’s frustrating and damaging when a position stays open.
The frustrating part of this is that when you do find that candidate you usually have plenty of competition. Aside from moving quickly which a lot of your competition is already doing, the key to landing your candidate is to make the right offer first and don’t seek to make an offer that you know you can counter.
Yes, you’re right, in negotiating a price everyone knows the tactic of lowballing and countering. You never know, they might accept your lowball offer first or you can meet in the middle somewhere. When you’re hiring someone, lowballing someone can and will be taken personally so if you make someone an offer that’s lower than their asking price it will turn them off even if you intended to counter them at a higher price. Lowballing says that if the person doesn’t take this offer than it’s not a big deal to you. That’s how they’re taking it and if that’s what you mean by making that offer, why are you making that offer in the first place?
So that concept should be cemented into every hiring manager’s head before extending an offer. Now what do you do when you want to hire a candidate that’s interviewing at multiple places with a few final round interviews scheduled? Do you make the offer and have them shut down their search or do you wait until they finish those final rounds to potentially beat your competition’s pending offers?
Be the first because:
- There are candidates that know where they want to work before any offers get made and then there are candidates that will wait until all options are laid out in front of them. My thought is that if they’re willing to risk losing an offer to see the rest of their suitor’s offers then the first offer wasn’t their first choice anyway.
- You’ll know quickly whether the candidate is serious about your opportunity and you don’t risk waiting for them to get all their offers to extend yours only to lose out anyway.
- It shows confidence in your opportunity to be the first ones to extend an offer. Waiting to counter the candidate’s other offers shows you’re not a leader and not willing to take the first step.
- Making the first offer also shows your decision making abilities, when you make a decision to move forward you move. How a company hires is how they manage.
So how do you make offers? Do you put your best foot forward first or do you wait until you see what the candidate is getting before slapping together your offer?