Money Isn't The Answer: How To Successfully Combat The 'Counteroffer Issue'​

Wayne Brophy

Jun 29, 2022

Money Isn't The Answer: How To Successfully Combat The 'Counteroffer Issue'​


It’s a common trend in this buoyant recruitment market: the client finally finds their ideal candidate, they make them an offer, then they discover the candidate’s current company has come back with a fantastic counteroffer.

Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as responding with a counteroffer yourself. Their existing employer holds a lot of cards, namely familiarity, and the potential to develop their role now they realize the employee could be resigning. You need to be prepared for a counteroffer from the first interview – and, more importantly, prepare the candidate too.

In this blog, we explain how.

Ask the candidate about resignation day

Put the individual in the frame of mind for resigning ahead of time, then question what their employer would do and say. For example, there’s a high possibility they’ll be offered more money. From their reaction, you may be able to tell whether this would tempt them to stay with their current company or not.

It’s important to present multiple scenarios so they can explore all avenues. This will help them realize for themselves why a counteroffer wouldn’t work, rather than feeling forced into a rushed decision, or as though they’re being lectured.

Of course, their employer’s counteroffer could persuade them to stay. In this case, the likelihood is they weren’t going to leave the company anyway, and were simply looking for a pay rise. But by carrying out this process you’ve saved time in the long run, as you wouldn’t take them through to the next stage of recruitment.

Consider other important factors

While salary is a key focal point, it’s not all about money. There are other critical factors at play, like needing a new challenge and not getting along with a colleague or boss.

Find out what would motivate the individual to accept your offer, and learn what would prompt them to reject a counteroffer. Get them to open up about their must-have benefits and overall career path too. Not only does this show you’re interested in them as a person, it will get them thinking.

After this conversation, they’ll be clearer on what they do and don’t want from a job – and so will you.

Promote your employer value proposition

When they’re talking about what motivates them to agree to an offer, or refuse a counteroffer, remember to mention what your brand is offering them. For example, if an individual is unhappy with their employer’s flexible working arrangements, explain why yours trumps it.

Promote your employer value proposition (EVP), from the company culture to your focus on social issues – after all, a holistic EVP is the way forward. When you do this, take it beyond the interview, but don’t just send over a few links by email. Provide real-life examples and go into detail about what makes your EVP better than anyone else’s.

If they’re the right candidate, you need to voice how they’ll fit in to your organization, and what working there would actually be like for them. By enabling them to envision this, they won’t be tempted by a counteroffer.

Gain the best talent with Cast USA

By implementing these steps, you can avoid losing the best talent to a counteroffer. But if you need help finding people in the first place, talk to Cast USA. We’re the ones to turn to for handling candidate offers, the negotiation process, and that tricky gap between someone accepting your offer and their first day in the job.

Plus, our Recruitment Solutions come with optional features including video interviewing and employer-branded advertising. Speak to us today to learn how we can benefit your organization.