You’ve spent hours of time reviewing resumes, interviewing candidates, and making hard decisions. You know who you want to hire and you’re ready to make them an offer—hopefully one you think they can’t refuse. Before you click “send” on that offer letter, here are some important factors to consider as you think about the job’s requirements, appropriate salary, and benefits.
1. Know how much your candidate is worth.
Whether you’re hiring an entry level Account Assistant or a Director of Marketing, you need to understand your candidate’s value. This means thoroughly understanding their skills, experience, and potential. We always say, “You get what you pay for.” Make sure you know what you can afford to pay and then look at candidates who are in that range. Don’t make the mistake of falling in love with a candidate that you can’t afford. Research the job description and know the going rates for your area—this will help you understand how your budget measures up.
2. Know your candidate’s “pain points.”
This means you want to have a firm understanding of why your offer would be appealing. Does your candidate have a horrible commute at his current job? Has he bottomed out opportunity-wise and feels like there is no room for growth? Maybe your candidate currently has a 60 hour work week and your company sticks to a 40 hour week? These are a few examples of non-monetary “selling points” that can be of real value.
3. Clearly outline the other benefits your company offers.
Benefits are a huge element of the hiring and offer negotiation process. If you have excellent benefits, don’t be afraid to use that as a bargaining tool when making an offer. If your sales team has access to company cars, this is something you want to be sure to outline. Maybe you can’t offer your candidate a raise, but you can offer him an extra week of paid vacation, company sponsored health insurance, and stock options.
Your offer letter should be about more than just a bottom dollar. Instead of discussing only the salary, be sure to outline all of the other perks that come with the position and ensure the value for those perks is factored in to your offer. You want your candidate to be excited about making a change and coming to work for you—and to feel like she’s getting more than just a paycheck. Showing that you’ve taken the time to understand the things that are important to her is a critical step in getting that offer letter back signed and sealed.