As an employer, deciding whom to hire can be a tough decision. Not only do you expect the person to be qualified, but you also want him/her to be a good fit for your company’s culture. Once you have decided the best fit for your company, you must extend a job offer for acceptance. While extending a job offer can be a joy-filled task, careful consideration must be given to the process in which an offer is extended and the specific terms that are offered. A little planning can minimize the chance of creating any unintended employment contracts.
Here are some pointers to keep in mind the next time you extend a job offer:
• Be prompt—give the candidate a call and extend your offer over the phone. This conversation can touch on the employment basics. If your offer is accepted, a follow-up acceptance letter can provide more detail on the specific terms/conditions of the offer.
• If the candidate doesn’t give you an answer immediately, give the candidate a deadline for responding. Depending on the level of the job, anywhere from 24 hours to 7 days can be a reasonable time period.
• Pay attention to the details of the offer letter and don’t make promises that you cannot or do not intend to keep. Compensation should be given as an hourly rate or a biweekly or monthly salary. Annual compensation should not be stated in the offer letter as it may imply that you intend for the candidate to be with the company for one year and that you intend to pay them the annual salary, regardless of any extenuating circumstances that may arise.
• Be prepared to negotiate if needed. You may have three great candidates and if one doesn’t accept, one of the others might. But, if the candidate is worth fighting for and he/she wants to negotiate, be prepared. Research beforehand to determine what the major factors for acceptance are for that particular candidate. Maybe those factors are relocation assistance, helping his/her spouse obtain employment, more money or more paid time off. Regardless, always maintain sight of what is appropriate for your business.
Next time you have the opportunity to welcome a new employee, implementing these tips into your hiring process will make the experience an enjoyable one—for you AND your new hire!