Onboarding – How to ensure signed offers translate into starts

Offer to start Ellis Fox Blogg

The continuing high demand for specialist expertise such quantity surveyors is creating a hiring battleground. Even a signed offer is sometimes not enough to guarantee that a candidate will start.

Within the standard 1-3 month notice periods required for senior professionals a lot can happen. Candidates can be convinced to stay with their current employer through a counter offer or promotion or another company could make them an even better offer. This is why it’s so important to start the onboarding process as soon as an offer has been signed.

It’s about building relationships, letting candidates know that they’re valued from the minute they accept the offer. Giving them insight into the company and projects they’ll be working on. When a relationship has been established, it makes it harder to have a change of mind and walk away. It keeps the focus on future prospects and new opportunities rather than second guessing whether they’ve made the right decision.

Here are two ways to take onboarding up a notch and improve the likelihood of getting from signed offer to start, more successfully:

1 – Open the door not just a window

When companies are working to sign a candidate, they’ll often give them a small window into the workings of the company. Once they’ve accepted an offer, part of the welcome should include opening the door and broadening that insight.

An invite can be given via a phone call or email with the objective of getting them to come into the office in person. That way you can show them around. Introduce them to the various divisions and teams and talk through some of the projects they’ll be working on.

This helps remove some of the anxiety about starting in a new company and helps them look forward to the change rather than be nervous about it.

2 – Keep it relaxed

It’s common practice for work colleagues to meet in the pub after work for a drink. Invite new employees along as part of their onboarding before they actually start. This provides a more informal setting for them to get to know the people they’ll be working with.

If you discover they have a specific sporting or cultural interest, such as cycling, and there are others in the company that share this interest, make a point of including them in group events.  This is great way to build stronger working relationships.

Companies that are deliberate about their onboarding efforts, and start them as soon as an offer is accepted, increase the chances of a successful start.