Talent Acquisition

The 6 Stages of Closing a Candidate

When it comes to securing candidates into roles, it’s all about acting quickly, if not immediately! As soon as you have the initial conversation with them, you should be thinking about ‘the close’, even though it may seem far, far away. Throughout the entire recruitment process, recruiters should gather in depth information to gauge the level of interest and commitment from their candidates.

First Stage: Pre-screen

The earliest stage you should begin closing the candidate on accepting the job is the pre-screen. Here you find out the struggles they have in their current role (because let’s face it they didn’t really give up their evening for a nice chat) and of course what their dream role consists of. It’s this information that you can use throughout the process to continually check that the opportunity is in line with their best interests. Come offer stage, you can remind them of what was driving them to search for a new role in the first place!

Second Stage: Interview confirmation

It’s important to keep positively presuming every situation when delivering the interview confirmation. Let the candidate know just how excited your client is to meet them.

‘They are very excited to meet you, I take it you would accept the offer if you liked the business?’’

Third Stage: Interview preparation

Even when spending the best part of an hour prepping the candidate for the interview, the most important aspect is believe it or not, the close.

‘If it goes as we have planned tonight, you will get invited back, what does your diary look like?’ Don’t allow an ‘no’ option.

Fourth Stage: Feedback

Delivering feedback to a candidate is the prime opportunity to work towards closing the candidate. You do this by helping paint the picture of them working for the business, and explain the positive impact they’ve had on the people they’ve met so far. The negative aspects of the feedback can be positioned as a negotiation tool to make the candidate feel they’d be lucky to get an offer, and further mould the opportunity into an extremely desirable one! You can also use their negative pieces of feedback about the job and discuss how you can get around these.

‘I can negotiate the commission structure to be a lot higher which means it’s the perfect position for you’

Use the recruitment skills you have spent years building to conduct the close without even thinking about it. There are two main reasons why closing the candidate at an early stage is crucial in recruitment:

  1. You will see whether the candidate is truly committed to the role
  2.  You will see how much they want the position

Fifth stage: Offer

If you have followed the stages highlighted above there should be no surprise in presenting the offer and the candidate accepting immediately. This is because you have prepped well enough to know exactly what they want. You present the offer in a way which they believe your client can’t wait to have them on board and you have negotiated and tailored the package completely suited to them.

Sixth stage: Post-offer

From the offer onwards it’s still important to keep the close at the epicentre of all conversations as it bears with it a powerful mechanism that has the ability to guide the candidate through the resignation stage. It helps break the golden handcuffs that the previous employer can hold them back with.

About the author: Daniel Gostelow is a Managing Director at ion Search, a recruitment company in the rec2rec space. 

Image: Shutterstock

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