What to do when job candidates take their sweet time

BVWireIssue #239-1
August 3, 2022

practice management and growth
business valuation profession, practice management

You’ve found a promising candidate to fill that vacant analyst spot and made an offer—but you can’t get an answer. The candidate gives you a date for an answer but then keeps delaying it. Consider an option that may not immediately come to mind, which is simply to retract the offer, advises John Borrowman (Borrowman Baker LLC), a recruiter who has worked exclusively in the BV profession for over 20 years. “The wiser course, obviously, is to avoid putting yourself in that position,” he says. “As the employer, you control the process up until the moment you actually make an offer. At that point, power tips to the candidate. Your goal is to strengthen your control beyond the point where you might ordinarily give it up.” Tactics include sharing a hiring timeline with the candidate and stressing that a prompt response will be needed if an offer is made. Also, give candidates everything they need to make a decision (such as a benefits summary) and make sure they know they can ask questions. After all this, if the candidate keeps delaying an answer, you’re justified in retracting the offer, Borrowman says. “Someone who consistently makes and breaks commitments is not likely someone you want in your practice.”

In his latest newsletter, Borrowman also explores remote work arrangements, how to smarten up your hiring process, and trusting gut instincts.

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