Tags: industry-insights, career-guidance, Recruitment Advice...

So, you’re an employer, who needs to run your business.  You’ve decided that even though the Coronavirus (COVID-19) is causing major disruption, you need to focus on business survival and growth.

Perhaps you made a job offer to a vital team member who was part of your 2020 plan for growth but have had to put that job offer on hold. Or perhaps you were in the final stages of the interview process, and about to make a job offer.

You’re not alone.  1000s of employers have spent considerable time and money on recruiting, only to have plans stalled due to economic uncertainty.

In this blog, I’ll talk about why retracting a job offer could damage your business way beyond this downturn, how you need to manage someone under offer (and indeed your existing team), and technology ideas to help to bond your new and existing team mates together to strengthen your business.

Don’t react and retract the job offer 

It’s tempting to “pull out” of the recruitment process entirely.  But if you’ve made a job offer, retracting it could cause massive issues for your growth when the upturn begins. In some sectors, the jobs market is extremely buoyant – so retracting a job offer could simply open that candidate up to other opportunities. Plus, perhaps the employee has a 3-month notice period – do you really want to retract your offer, and hope that the employee will wait for you?

Remember why you made the job offer.  Think about the process you went through to find and accept that candidate (and vice versa).  Do you want to start this again as we come out of this crisis, or are you best having the start date as “pending” and instead focusing your energy on running your business, motivating your existing team, and keeping your new recruit focused on the positives of joining your company?

Tip: You can still make an offer to a candidate but have the start date pending.  This is a great idea to help you push through this phase of your business, stronger and ready to go once the upturn begins.

Secure your team

Communication is key is not a cliché – it’s critical. 

If you have someone under offer, keep focused on the reasons why you made that job offer.  If you are going through a recruitment process, there was, and likely will be, a strong reason for this job vacancy. Starting the process again when the upturn comes – and it will come – is not ideal.

Equally, your existing team (and your clients) will want confidence that the business is secure.

Note that 19% of workers reported, before the lockdown, that loneliness during remote work is one of their biggest problems.  So, you need to focus on ensuring that 1 in 5 team members are not becoming too isolated.

Whether you have someone under offer, a new starter WFH (working from home) or a team social distancing at work, I have some great tips for you to keep them focused, positive and secure.

You can also get some technology ideas on How to Manage Your Remote Team in another blog. 

In terms of your new starters who have not even set foot in your business, and their start date is pending, be sure to work to keep them engaged.

The normal route to “keeping a candidate warm” is a call a month from the recruiter, but these are not normal times. You need to take control and lead.

Candidates waiting to start with you are isolated, and likely focused on the bad news all around them.  Think weekly or bi-weekly touch points: phone and video calls, WhatsApp messages, even memes – to show that you are still thinking of them and are looking forward to them starting.

Keep them posted on what’s happening in the company, people, products, successes.

What sector news could be sent to them to review?

All of this is designed to keep them focussed on why they accepted the job, so that they continue to want to work with you.

Get your team involved

Putting yourself under pressure to keep everyone happy is not what you need right now.  Get your team to do some of the heavy lifting.  How can you involve them? 

Can they take it in turns to call new and existing employees? 

Group calls are a must to keep the team secure and focused.

How can the team help you keep under offer employees “warm”?

How can your team onboard new starters?

How can your team keep each other motivated?

Lead the team to self-manage where they can, and perhaps even strengthen their bond during this time.  What a great way for new starters to begin engaging with your company!

I have been with Search Accountancy & Finance  for 15 years in the  finance shared services market.  Most of my clients are well-known global brands who are no doubt feeling the effects of Coronavirus (Covid-19) on their business and their workforce. I’d love to talk to employers who are looking to hire during this period or need advice on how to make job offers to great candidates ready to start when the upturn begins.

Contact us today.