It has to be up there as one of the most frustrating pain points in our jobs. Here at GRB we have helped over 2,000 organisations recruit and keep the best graduates the UK has to offer so we know a thing or two about getting offers over the line! That’s why we thought we’d share over 20 years’ experience and reveal some of the most tried and tested methods our clients have used to guarantee their job offers are too good to turn down.
1. Be quick! Speed is everything. A graduate job offer that is made just after the final interview face to face is much harder to turn down and will show you mean business! If that can’t be done aim to get an offer out within hours not days.
2. Offer an automatic salary review. Often a major hurdle in your graduate accepting an offer is the salary being too low. If you can’t budge at this point why not agree to review their salary three to six months down the line. In this time you will have a clearer idea of their value and it can alleviate some of the fear that they will be locked into a lower salary for long period of time.
3. Go the extra mile. For top, top candidates that you cannot lose ask them to create a list of what their dream job offer would look like. The list might contain benefits like remote working? A car? Creating their own job title? These are just some examples than can seal the deal and add an unexpected wow factor. This action also sends the message that there may be many other positive surprises coming if they accept the offer. It will also provide them with a story that they will likely pass along to their family and friends.
4. Be prepared to match other offers. In-demand graduates are likely to get multiple offers. Plan beforehand how high you are willing to go in order to match their other offers. Remember it may be non-financial benefits that make the difference. Refusing to make counteroffers will cause you to lose many top candidates.
5. The future looks bright. Graduates starting out are keen to know which direction their career will go if they join. Whilst this should never be guaranteed you have a golden opportunity to illustrate the career paths of other graduates and how they have progressed over two years or more. If board members are examples even better – they can go right to the top!
6. Offer a delayed start. Sometimes a graduate may hesitate to accept a job offer as the timings don’t work. In this situation it may be beneficial to delay their start date in order to give them more time.
7. Use peer interviews as a selling tool. Because work colleagues live and breathe the job they can be the most effective at alleviating any fears or persuading graduates to join the team. Offer a candidate at least one peer interview with the team.
Finally. There will be situations where, despite your best efforts, a graduate doesn’t accept your job offer. Getting feedback on the reasons why can give you useful insights going forward. Also, check in with them after three months in their new job to see if the situation is the same – you never know!