Every organization wants to hire the very best candidates it can, so they can turn those great candidates into great employees.
However, in order to do that, you must “get inside the head” of top candidates in the marketplace. Remember, top candidates are already employed, performing at a high level for their current employer, and probably not conducting an active job search.
As a result, it’s more difficult to know what motivates top candidates. It’s not just the prospect of a job. It’s the prospect of a better job. But what constitutes a “better job”? As might be expected, it’s not one thing, but rather a combination of things.
Below are the five things that top candidates consider in a job offer:
#1—Opportunities for career growth
This is typically at or near the top of all lists of this type. It’s not money or compensation. It’s the opportunity for growth. This includes individual growth in terms of skills and also overall growth in terms of career trajectory. Top candidates want to know that there’s somewhere for them to go and somewhere for them to grow at your company. If they don’t know that or if they’re uncertain about it, then they’re less likely to accept your offer.
#2—Culture and core values of the organization
This is especially important for the Millennial Generation, and it’s yet another reason why your organization’s core values should be clearly communicated (and also listed on your company website). If candidates do not feel comfortable with what they perceive to be the culture or core values, then they will shy away from the company. And it does not fall upon them to make themselves feel comfortable with these things. It falls upon you as the organization to make them feel comfortable.
#3—Salary, benefits, and other compensation
Sure, top candidates want more in this area. Why wouldn’t they? However, it’s rarely the number-one consideration when they’re analyzing job offers. That’s because since they’re top candidates, they’re more than likely receiving multiple offers. In addition, these offers are usually close in terms of overall compensation. That means the candidates involved will be looking at other considerations to help them determine which offer to accept.
#4—Work-life balance/schedule flexibility
Top candidates are accustomed to tackling a big workload. That’s one of the reasons they’re (usually) valued at their current employer and are top candidates in the first place. However, they know the dangers of burning out, and they prefer to “work to live” and not “live to work.” That’s why offering a flexible schedule with plenty of paid time off (PTO) goes a long way to convincing a top candidate to choose your organization.
Nobody wants to be stuck in a car for two to three hours per day. This might seem like a small consideration, but it can often serve as a “tiebreaker” of sorts if a candidate has two offers from competing companies. The flexible schedule referenced above in #4 could very well include the chance to work from home on occasion. A candidate is more likely to choose an offer that provides that kind of flexibility, allowing them to cut down on their commute time.
How does your organization stack up in terms of the above considerations? Is what you offer to candidates attractive enough for them to want to work for you? In what areas are you lacking, and what steps can you take to strengthen those areas?
If you don’t offer what top candidates want in a job offer, then you will NOT attract, recruit, and successfully hire them. It’s as simple as that.
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