Making An Offer, The Do’s and Don’ts

It is easy to think that once you have selected your star employee all the hard work is done. But, there is one important and tricky task left and that is negotiating an attractive offer with the candidate. Done right and you get your star candidate, done wrong and you could lose them. In this article we provide tips on how to negotiate the  offer effectively and close the deal.

Making An Offer, The Do’s and Don’ts

One of the trickiest and frustrating areas of the recruitment process is not the candidate search, the shortlisting, the interviewing or even making the selection, it occurs after all this is done, it is the awkward process which we know as Making an offer of employment. The employer is trying to strike the balance between making an attractive offer, which entices the candidate to join but at the same time doesn’t over compensate, and which also does not upset the internal pay structures within the business – an action which could lead to unrest within your current employee body.

Of course, the offer process is a complicated process and can be an evolving situation which means that there is no exact recipe for the perfect offer negotiation but there are some clear ‘Do’s and Don’ts during the offer process and we have set these out for you below.


Never make an offer on the spot, no matter how amazing the candidates appears to be as this can appear like desperation or at least over-keenness which the candidate may exploit to their advantage by attempting to negotiate a higher starting salary.

Always, allow yourself some breathing space between final interview and offer – allowing yourself at least a night to sleep on it and a day to properly consider the candidate’s strengths so you can make an offer that is truly commensurate with their experience.


Don’t make the mistake of thinking that an interview is a one way process as those days are gone – and your business may be one of many options for your candidate and so they will also be interviewing you to see if your employer brand and culture meets their expectations.

At every opportunity, be that in the job advert, during first and second interview or even at offer stage make sure you are espousing all the positive and most attractive element of your employer brand offering so that the candidates see you as the Employer of Choice.


Don’t discard the second and third placed applicants as you may need to fall back on this option if your first choice candidate does not accept the job.

Always have a second and even third choice (where possible) as this will give you a stronger bargaining position as you will have a fall back position. So, stay in touch with your second and third choice candidates and do not reject them until your 1st choice candidate has accepted the offer and signed an employment contract.


Don’t avoid giving the candidate an honest appraisal of the role as research shows that Realistic Job Previews that provide candidate’s with a view of both the positive and negative aspects of the job lead to the hiring of more loyal and capable staff.

Do give employee’s Realistic Job Previews as the top candidate’s will be stimulated by a challenge and will be more attracted to the job which can make them easier to negotiate with.


Don’t make an offer until you have checked the candidate’s notice period and how long they would need to make a decision – as both these factors could have an impact of whether you make an offer. Because if you are facing urgent resourcing issues a candidate is more immediately available may be a more attractive option.

Do try and find out the notice period and the general enthusiasm the candidate has for the role before making an offer, e.g. do they have counter offers or competitor offers? The more information you have the more power you will have in the negotiation.
At Outfit, we have an exceptionally high acceptance rate when it comes to presenting offers to our candidates. For further advice and support, please contact our team on 03 9525 2440.