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Counter Offers on the rise

Employers are competing more than ever for talent, with an increase in counter offers over the last 12 months, according to research

Employers are competing more than ever for the top talent, as two thirds of finance leaders have seen an increase in counter offers over the last 12 months, research has shown.

Whilst the latest ONS figures suggest that hiring has returned to pre-recessionary levels, the level of suitably skilled candidates remains low across the UK.

200 finance leaders, surveyed by recruitment consultancy Robert Half, indicates that employers recognise that the talent pool is shrinking and to compensate the best candidates are now receiving multiple job offers and counter offers.

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Nearly two thirds of senior finance professionals are also more likely to offer a sign-on bonus to attract top candidates compared to last year, the report states.

The firm said that the research shows the war for talent remains fierce and the market is shaping up to be a job candidate’s market.

20 per cent of the respondents said that  the prevalence of counter offers had ‘increased significantly’ over the past year, while another 45 per cent said they had increased ‘somewhat’. Only 1 per cent of finance leaders said the number of counter offers had decreased significantly over the year.

The UK managing director of Robert Half said to CIPD that it was vital for firms to act quickly: “Those that are slow to get their offers out of the door will find they get left behind,” he said.

“Flexibility is also key – companies that are too rigid with their job offers may find they cannot secure their top choice of candidate. Remuneration expectations are increasing so businesses need to prepare to negotiate with their chosen candidate.”

The survey also showed that counter offers are not an effective long term strategy to retain staff, as those surveyed, when asked about how the trust between employee and employer was effected, 55 per cent said it was negatively impacted.

Sheridan added:” “Whilst counteroffers may appear to work in the short term, employers must address the underlying issues in order to retain top performers. If not, it is likely that the employee will leave, albeit in a more prolonged way and with a higher salary,”

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