Breaking up is hard to do, and sometimes letting go is the hardest part. Because you put in so much time--so much compromise! You toiled over being so considerate of the little things your Candidate deemed so important to cementing the perfect fit. And yet, after all that glorious effort, they slipped through your fingertips. *Sigh*
But with every breakup comes the realization that it’s time to move on, and sometimes that’s when the lessons are learned; when you realize that maybe it really wasn’t because of you that the relationship ended… and there were those other little things - those habits you ignored - that should have made you break it off long ago.
Here are some examples of some of the little things Candidates do that should tell you it’s time to let go.
Your Candidate is vague
Communication is the key to opening the employment door for your Candidate, so when opportunity knocks, you need to know exactly what that Candidate is looking for before you answer – and “a better opportunity” isn’t good enough. How is better defined? If you’re pursuing a passive Candidate, what would be their motivator for a new role? Without this knowledge, you face the risk of losing your Candidate to a counteroffer or because they aren’t that serious about making a move. “People don't like to deal with issues, so rather than deliver the blatant message, they hope you will just read between the lines,” says Marnie Pertsindis, an Account Manager with Procom. “I think when you let a Candidate know how it will benefit them to be engaged with you while also letting them know that you will offer the same to them, you set the tone for better communication.”
Your Candidate won’t commit to numbers
They say money talks, and if you don’t have the discussion with your Candidate about their currency expectations before you present them with a role, it could leave you chasing someone the Client can't afford anyway. It isn’t strictly necessary to know what their current rate or salary is (although it can help); it's what they want to make that's the need-to-know info. "You have to confirm; then reconfirm with the Candidate that they are comfortable at the rate you have agreed to submit to the Client," advises Charles Liikson, a Technical Recruiter for Procom. "And always remind them that negotiating for a better rate after being presented at a certain rate can lead to instant disqualification and almost always is very frowned upon with the Client."
Don’t waste everyone’s time by chasing a Candidate all the way through the process to only discover the money isn't there.
Your Candidate is suddenly unresponsive
Hey, things happen and emergencies exist, but if your eager Candidate has suddenly gone quiet, it’s often an indicator that their interest lay somewhere else. Are they suddenly slow to respond to opportunities, not properly prepared for an interview, dodging post-interview follow up calls or declining offers without explanation? If you answer in the affirmitive, it’s probably best to walk away. “Having an unresponsive Candidate after submission is the worst. Telling the Client that a Candidate is MIA for interviews or offers looks bad on both parties. I had a Candidate go on a two week vacation after submitting their profile - not good,” admits Julian Lopez, a Technical Recruiter for Procom. It’s a common, unfortunate circumstance that can be avoided if you can be made aware.
Your Candidate is a player
There’s a distinct difference between the player and the game, and if your Candidate is transparent about working with other agencies, hey – honesty is a relationship pillar and you can figure it out. But if you find out he or she is playing agency against agency or is constantly on the market, it’s probably a problem. “When a Candidate who already has an offer from another agency wants to apply for your position because you are offering more money, chances are he or she will leave your contract as well for more money,” advises Bhawna Agarwal, a Recruiting Team Lead with Procom. “Similarly, if a Candidate who recently joined a company is ready to entertain other positions, they generally do not finish their contract tenure.”
Your Candidate has unrealistic expectations
Have you ever had a Candidate admit to receiving prior offers but he or she will entertain yours if they can be interviewed and hired within the next day or two? Has a Candidate ever required X amount of dollars at the new job because an old one offered some type of outrageous perk and they feel like they need to even it out? If you have, it’s hoped you moved on—because these types of unrealistic expectations (and the people who give them) probably won’t disappear once it’s time to sign on the dotted line. It's a problematic situation best avoided.
So, while breaking up is hard to do, it’s better to pull off the bandaid as soon as possible, so you're free to focus on the plenty of other talented Candidates in the sea.