So, you’ve found the perfect candidate. They have the skills you want, they interviewed well and they’re the right fit for your company. While hiring someone can feel like a formality as soon as you’re happy with a candidate, the offer stage can actually present a challenge and it’s not unusual for businesses to get caught out at the final hurdle. If the offer is misjudged, it can damage your relationship with a candidate and leave them with a negative impression of your organisation, so there are significant risks to avoid during this part of the process.
If you want to stand the best possible chance of landing your next superstar Auckland IT professional read on.
Making the Offer: Internal and External Factors
In my experience, two contexts must be addressed and matters unique to each must be considered when making a salary offer in a highly competitive industry like IT.
Within Your Own Company
One key place where organisations go wrong is not having a solid plan or process before they get to the offer stage. Globally, the hiring process is already known to be slow, taking 29.4 days on average, so avoid lengthy delays which test a candidate’s patience, especially if they’ve made it clear they would like the role being offered. Don’t forget to keep the lines of communication open too, especially if you’ve stumbled across an unanticipated delay.
Know your limits from the start. Be upfront and outline the salary you’re looking to pay for the role when you’re still in the recruitment process, be sure to secure any additional internal approvals in advance rather than delaying until you have a candidate waiting on a decision.
Ask yourself, what are your negotiables and non-negotiables when it comes to skills. While sticking to your budget is obviously best practice, it’s a good idea to scenario-plan ahead of time in case you find yourself in the position of identifying someone exceptional who can take on a bigger role and deliver more value. Are you prepared to lose this talent; do you think you will be able to find someone this good again?
Think about what else your company can offer in terms of financial and non-financial benefits too: can you include bonuses; shares; flexible working hours; or the opportunity for influence and progression?
Out in the Marketplace
Do your research. RWA’s Auckland IT Salaries Report is a great place to start; it’s a useful resource to help you set your offer apart from another company. Survey respondents revealed not only remuneration data but also provided insights into the non-financial elements that can help them decide to accept a new role.
While it is commonplace for recruiters to handle the salary negotiation and offer process on your behalf, knowing the average salary on offer in the industry is vital to combat the common mistake of over or under-estimating an offer. Having poor knowledge of what the going rate is for the person you’re hiring can result in you being either severely out of pocket or an insulting offer being put forward, thus potentially impacting your reputation.
To make the most attractive offer you can, consider not only your company; the IT sector in general; your location; your size; and what you need, but also the demand for the role you’re offering; how many competitors may be seeking someone for the same role; skill requirement; level of experience; and level of candidate quality. Taking all these variables into consideration will give you a pretty good idea of what you should be paying. If, after all this, you’re still unsure give me a call or send me an email. I can guide you through the investigative process using our IT Salaries Report which breaks down the ranges for specific role types, job level (for example from executive management roles to networks, systems and testing roles) along with reporting respondent job satisfaction estimations; their notions of feeling valued; willingness to move; plus, the nature and scale of incentives which can sometimes trigger movement between roles. The numbers and insights on value and happiness may surprise you; they certainly surprised us!
Presenting the Offer
Addressing the needs of an individual candidate is the best way to present a salary offer so be sure to take note of what they reveal in an interview, especially their motivations.
While money is obviously a driver for most jobseekers, be sure to highlight the non-financial aspects of your offer to a candidate as well. Taking a holistic approach and discussing not just the money side of things but, for example, the potential for career development and work-life balance shows a candidate you’ve listened to what they said in the interview.
When you come to a decision make an offer verbally, doing this helps cement the rapport you will have already cultivated with a candidate. It will also help keep you abreast of any counter-offers you may need to be aware of. Discussing and making an offer straight away ensures you can get early feedback and consider your next move if you need to make one.
As I’ve previously mentioned, our 32-page IT Salaries Report gives detailed insights into the IT industry and can be a great basis for coming up with the most competitive offer. If you would also like to have input into this year’s report click here to go to RWA’s IT Salaries Survey.
Getting over the final hurdle of hiring someone can be made a lot easier with the advice outlined above. Good luck.