In recent years candidate engagement has become a major responsibility of a recruiter. Finding the talent and offering them a good package is not enough to attract a candidate. A recruiter’s job doesn’t end there. Until the candidate joins the company, the recruiter has to be on his toes. 

Once you offer, you try to call him on his date of joining and there’s no response! You try reaching out to him through all possible ways but no luck. A few days later, through LinkedIn updates you come to know that he has joined another company. There is no doubt that this situation has happened with each and every recruiter in their career.  Candidates backing out are a true nuisance for recruiters and employers alike.

Some of the consequences of candidates backing out are:

  1. Restart hiring process 
  2. Wastage of time 
  3. Not able to meet the deadline
  4. Costs of hiring shoots up
  5. Demotivates recruiters

So let’s discuss how we can stop candidates from backing out. For that we need to dig into the reasons why candidates back out in the first place.

Why do candidates back out from an offer?

  1. They’re current company retained them
  2. A personal emergency 
  3. They rethought their position on the job role
  4. They developed cold feet and aren’t ready for the change
  5. They’ve got a better offer in another company

Whenever a candidate backs out you hear one of the reasons mentioned above. Handling these situations in a timely manner can help avoid the seemingly inevitable event. Let’s take a deeper look at each of the given reasons and how we can tackle it.

1) Current Company Retained the Employee

Mostly we see that when a candidate puts down his papers their manager tries to retain them by agreeing to some demands of the employee which cancels out their need for a different opportunity.

Solution – In this situation try to understand why the candidate is looking out for job change. If the candidate is leaving for reasons like designation or better salary then it’s easier for his current organisation to retain him. On the other hand, work culture, issues with co-workers and location are harder for organisations to change.  It’s best to connect with the candidate as soon as he’s submitted his resignation.  Having a conversation immediately after the candidate as put in his/her papers will give you a better idea of the situation.

2) A personal emergency prevents them from joining

A personal emergency situation is very difficult to handle. Candidates give family reasons for declining the offer.

Solution-  The best approach in the scenario is to be supportive and see if you could extend the joining date by a couple of days.Personal emergencies are often used as an excuse by candidates who do not wish to join your organisation for reasons they don’t want to disclose. So try to be a little conservative when extending supportive courtesies towards the candidate.

3) They rethought their position on the job role

While job hunting, candidates may have accepted roles that they’re not entirely happy with.  When the joining date draws closer, it’s possible that the new job may not be as attractive to them as they initially thought.

Solution –Such scenarios can be contained through an effective interview process.  It’s important to gauge the willingness and excitement the candidate has towards the role. Asking the right questions at the interview stage can help you avoid drop-offs and help you avoid hiring poorly motivated employees.

4) They’ve lost interest 

To change companies  is difficult and for some candidates  they really don’t want to come out of their comfort zone. Sometimes it’s the fear of what lies ahead in their new role, may cause them to change their minds.  

Solution-  In such scenarios, a little reassurance might be enough.  Reiterating the benefits and the security of the job and also promising growth (if possible) might be able to get the candidate to rethink his/her decision.

5) Accepted Better Offer from Another Company

This is probably the most common reason for a candidate to back out. As a recruiter or an employer, you must accept the fact that candidates will look at other offers while they wait for their joining date. When we speak about a better offer we are pointing towards better pay, better working conditions (office, location, and amenities), a more reputed brand and better role.

Solution- To be very frank  there isn’t much scope to tackle these points in the short run.  In a situation like this the best you can do is to find out earlier than later.  Hence, staying in touch constantly with the candidate is a must. Candidates are more likely to join a company where they feel important so make them feel  important .