Inside Tips From A Professional Recruiter: Counteroffers

Tips from a professional recruiter about the hiring process: counteroffers.

How Do You Avoid A Counteroffer?

As we start to wrap up the end of the year, starting today I will be sharing brief but poignant inside tips to help from a professional recruiter. Whether you are a candidate looking for a position, a hiring manager, or internal HR, all should find these tips especially useful and insightful.  The purpose of sharing these ideas is that if everyone (both the candidate and the hiring managers) is aware of them, the process should go much more efficiently with no surprises at the end of the process (i.e. They start!)

Our first inside tip from a professional recruiter will be centered around counteroffers.  The candidate pool of good professionals, either public finance bankers or bond counsels, retract for various reasons. The desire is to keep your current employees from leaving. Conversely, protecting a new employee that you have been counting on hiring from taking a counteroffer from his or her firm.

A Word From A Professional Recruiter:

“Preparation Looks Good On You.” 

Preparation for all counteroffer discussions is the key.  Many internal recruiters as well as inexperienced hiring managers are reluctant to bring up counteroffers. If they do, they bring the discussion around to them hesitantly and at the end of the hiring process.  A good, professional recruiter discusses the counter proposal early and consistently throughout the entire hiring process.  They will constantly discuss the potential of a counteroffer being delivered and counsel the candidate as to how to handle it when it inevitably comes up.

Check-Ins & Reminders From A Professional Recruiter

Professional recruiters use the tactic of asking if anything has changed since their last conversation, even if it was just a few hours ago.  After determining that everything is still looking positive, then they will again discuss the counteroffer. More importantly, however, they will get the candidate’s buy-in that he/she will not accept one or even entertain the thought of accepting one.  This is where the job of the professional recruiter comes into play: to consistently remind the candidate of why they first started entertaining looking for a new position.  

Communication Is Key

In addition, if there is a delay in time of someone resigning and starting, the hiring manager should definitely be in touch with that candidate throughout any garden leave or any other delay in the start date.  From a professional recruiter, I recommend at least once a week.  You can bet their old firm is still going to be working on them, hoping they will retract their resignation during this time.  If the candidate does not continue to feel the love and the desire of the new firm to get the onboarding process started, they may waiver in their decision.  Remember: just because someone has resigned does not necessarily mean they are going to start.  Communication during this phase is crucial.

Takeaways For Everyone From A Professional Recruiter

In conclusion, the way to avoid a counteroffer is to have consistent and constant communication with the candidate.  If you are the candidate, you now know what to expect so you can mentally prepare for a counteroffer discussion and stay with your initial plan – no matter what pressure will be exerted on you to change your mind.  Next week we will continue with more tips from a professional recruiter. 


You don’t need a resume to chat with us! If you would like to discuss your options, please reach out for a confidential conversation at 760-477-1284 or email at [email protected]. He can also be reached on LinkedIn. Harlan publishes a blog every Thursday here. Subscribe to our monthly newsletter here, which is a compilation of our weekly blogs, so you never miss one. You can find our listing in the “supplier and services” section of the Red Book under the title of “executive recruiting.”

About Harlan Friedman, JD & Founding Member, H. Friedman Search LLC. Harlan is a thirty-year veteran Public Finance Banker turned recruiter who specializes in the placement of all levels Public Finance Bankers, Healthcare Bankers, Municipal Advisors, Compliance Officers, Issuers, and Bond Counsels.