May 9, 2019

Post-Acceptance Pro Tips: Don’t Lose The Candidate Before They Start

by Mary Newgard

You’ve poured a lot into the interview process. It’s been several weeks or months of interviews. You’ve spent a fair amount of money on profile tests and travel expenses. You’ve finally found your perfect new hire, made them a great offer and they accepted! Now what happens until their first day of employment? The length of time to wait- 10 days, 30 days of 90 days- is irrelevant. You have two choices:

  1. Tell the candidate you’ll see them on their first day. Show up at 8 am and don’t forget to bring ID for their I-9 paperwork.
  2. Stay in communication with the candidate. Go the extra mile to make them feel confident in the offer and excited to be a part of your family.

Most employers want to do #2 but really only carry out #1. You’ll lose candidates with a lack of communication and connectivity. Counteroffers, other employers and spousal influence create some serious renege situations.


1. Weekly Contact is a MUST

“It’s been a month since I accepted the job but I haven’t spoken with the COO in that time. Maybe something changed with him, the company or my position?”

Fears pop up for candidates after they accept jobs. If left unaddressed the concerns can spiral out of control and they decide to stay with their current employer. This is typical pre-start jitters and anxieties.  Don’t underestimate the power of weekly contact. It plants positive seeds and allows you to quickly address concerns as you sense them popping up.

2. Imagine Them In Your Uniform ASAP

“I wonder what it’s going to be like on my first day, week and month. The interview process went so fast I don’t feel like I know many of the people I’ll work with.”

Being the new kid on the block stinks. You need different topics for the weekly contact.  Try these:

  • Include a diverse group of employees in the weekly touch point calls.
  • Have coworkers send an introductory email with a few interesting facts about themselves. End the message with a request for a response to generate dialogue.
  • Connect team members with the new employee on social media. LinkedIn is the best.
  • Share company updates- newsletters, awards, recognition and agendas on the horizon.
  • Make sure invitations to upcoming outings/team building events are already on the calendar.
  • Outline a training schedule including carrier or client meetings in the first few weeks.

3. Convey Your Appreciation

“What if they don’t like me?” Interviewing is like dating. Working together is like getting married. That time between engagement and the altar is a scary moment of self-reflection for candidates.

  • Reinforce the momentum and energy about why you like the person AND why you think they will be a great employee for your company.
  • K.I.S.S.- Do something simple and totally unexpected. Send flowers (for them or their spouse). If the person is relocating, send an Amazon gift card to help buy something for their new place. Set up their desk before their first day with company gear, a new portfolio, a snazzy pen, etc.


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