Manufacturing Recruitment Advice - How to Make The Top Candidates an Offer They Cant Refuse

13 July 2018

LinkedIn ShareShare

Listen to Full Podcast Now!

Announcer: You're listening to Manufacturing Ignition Recruitment Advice, bringing you right up to date on the latest recruitment information, trends, and discussions to help you recruit the best people for your business. Sponsored by Bonfire Recruitment, helping manufacturing leaders across the UK to attract the best talent for their manufacturing company. Ignite your business or career today by vising Here's your hosts, Terry Mallin and Scott Buchanan. 


Terry Mallin: Moving on to the Recruitment Minute. In this week's episode of Manufacturing Ignition Recruitment Advice, we're going to discuss, how do you make the top 15% of people an offer they can't refuse? And this is following on from the couple of episodes before where what we've actually spoke about is how do you engage the top 15% of people in your market place. How do you then convince or attract these people to come for an interview, and now we're looking at actually making that person an offer.

Terry Mallin: So, if you've not listened back, listen back to the podcast, the Recruitment Advice podcast, episode seven, eight and maybe six. We'll go seven and eight.

Terry Mallin: Kicking off, before actually making an offer there's a lot of things to actually consider as a manufacturer and leader within your business. Before making your offer, what you want to make sure is that you've covered every aspect of the role and the requirements that you're looking for, for that particular person, with the candidate. Whilst they've been meeting you face to face at interview or getting a factory tour, you want to make sure that people are fully aware of what's expected from them. The last thing you want is someone to come in with 75% of an idea of what's expected and then once you're pushing the challenges that are there in the top 100, they decide it's not the right move for them and decide to leave the company after a couple of months.

Terry Mallin: So, get everything upfront, out in the open before we're even making an offer. Another thing, before we get there is, make sure that you've probed the candidate for any questions that they might have. You don't want to have any possible objections. Ask them face to face, "If we were considering making you an offer, would your company counter offer?" There's no problem asking that question, it's just having a conversation and hopefully at that stage there's enough of a rapport been built with the relationship at interview.


Scott Buchanan: Tying in with that Terry, I think specific on that point of the counter offer, whereby the reason that the candidate is sitting with the potential new employer, is because there's a reason. Whether it's from a career, aspirational perspective, or a frustration with their current employer, that actually that counter offer [inaudible 00:03:42] sealed. What's the old recruitment statistic? That the candidate that's brought back, 80% of them are back in the market within six months.


Terry Mallin: Yeah. Exactly, because the core objection is still the same. The core problem that they had, it's not a lot to do with money.


Scott Buchanan: What I found, certainly in recent years is that, at the end of the day as long as the candidate and the client have had a good, honest, open conversation, at some point, where appropriate, then both parties are joining the business with the same intentions, with the same objectives. And typically, in my experience, everyone's happy and does a good job.

Scott Buchanan: By doing that, that's half the battle. Sometimes there can be too much emphasis on the softer- Or the real reasons for looking. The companies, because of their rigid recruitment process and because of their [inaudible 00:04:35] strategies, which in fairness are actually very good but can miss out from the candidate's side. Which can make our job pretty difficult.

Terry Mallin: Yeah, and it's all about having upfront conversations. I'm always an advocate of that, there's no reason why you couldn't ask the person as well, just to make sure they're genuinely interested, have they had anything else on the go at the same time, if they're in any other interview process now.



Terry Mallin: Remember how we've got to this situation, you've approached this person directly. This is what we do every day, we approach people directly. So, a lot of the time they're not actually looking. They're not interviewing anywhere else which puts the business in a good position, where if they're looking to make an offer, there's nothing else on the go. But don't take that for granted. Make sure you're asking, because as soon as the cog turns in somebody's head that actually, "Do you wanna know what? I've been in a different manufacturing company, I actually could go with making a move now." Then opportunities start to arise, especially if you're good at what you do.

Terry Mallin: Other companies will start to cotton on, and then that person might actually be in two or three different processes within a week or two. It can happen really quickly, so don't-


Scott Buchanan: You're spot on Terry. One of the questions I always ask my candidate when were getting feedback a few days after the event, you know, how are they feeling about things. Typically, the best time to get that feedback is within the first day of them being back in their existing employer, having met with an alternative employer, because they'll see how it is and they'll appreciate that actually the real reason they're looking, whatever that is, is that they're keen to move on and you're right, that they will then start ramping up, maybe being a bit proactive themselves to see what's out there.


Terry Mallin: And if you're doing all that, do all this before You make the offer. There's no point making the offer to find out they've got another two offers on the table somewhere else, or the fact is that, there are companies that are going to counter offer and they're going to offer double what you're offer is, as a rise.

Terry Mallin: Make sure all that's on the ... Let's get to the point of actually making the offer. What you've got to remember is that you, as a business leader or a business, has approached them first. They might not have been looking, so you need to [inaudible 00:06:52] that as well, because they might actually have been happy in their role. What they might be looking for is something different, as Scott was mentioning, and that isn't always to do with money. With career driven individuals its more to do with what the opportunities are within a new business for them to progress their careers. How much investment within-



Scott Buchanan: [crosstalk 00:07:09] It could be absolutely anything.


Terry Mallin: - It could be education, it could be shares within a certain business or equity. There's a lot of ... Point the bases of, if you're a small manufacturer that's got a lot of potential and growing, you could offer somebody with a hell of a lot of experience from a bigger business, somebody with a greater deal of experience that could benefit your business, share options and equity is always a good option.

Terry Mallin: You as a business leader or a senior manager within manufacturing, you've obviously been very successful in your career, as well. You've probably been in this candidates shoes where you've been career driven, and you know the frame of mind that they'll be in. So just bare that in mind and put yourself in a candidates shoes and actually think, if I was making myself this offer, at that stage would I accept? And question that, and if it's a yes, great. If it's a no, why is it a no, and look at that.


Scott Buchanan: Yeah, it's exactly the case, especially when you're building the senior management team or when you're trying to attract someone to add value directly to the bottom line of your business, to have an impact on your business. It's making sure that you understand- And this is part of our job as well, is to make sure that this is very upfront here, but we need to fully understand the reason behind the hire, because if we fully understand the reason behind the hire, we can make sure that the candidate that's sitting in front of the client that's eventually getting the offer, is the right person that will bring that significant value to the business for the long term.

Scott Buchanan: I'm aware of a few examples where companies sometimes want to- “We want to see what the market's doing, we want to see what's out there.” But if you actually know what you're looking for, it's going to help you hire the right person and attract arguably a better caliber of candidate because they're joining your business because they know what they want to do and they know what they want to achieve. Likewise, it's tying in with what the organization's trying to achieve as well.



Terry Mallin: Yeah, it's not all painted positive and whatever else. Make sure you're upfront with the negatives of the business and the challenges the business might face, and the challenges of this role. Be quite clear on it, because when you're meeting somebody face to face, you can see in the whites of their eyes what their thoughts are and what their reaction is when you tell them the true picture. If somebody actually embraces that and thinks, “Bring it on!” You've got your-


Scott Buchanan: It's amazing. We recently ran a couple of campaigns that have highlighted that seeing a business from a financial perspective or financial footing, some candidates can look at that in a negative. But others look at that as an opportunity.

Scott Buchanan: It's amazing to see. This is the beauty of our job, whereby everyone's different when they look at a given role, and there again that ties in with the right candidate for that particular company, because the person that's looking at that company going, "Do you know what? Your numbers are maybe not where I want them to be, so you're not the right company for me." That ties in that they're probably not the right person for that company as well.


Terry Mallin: 100%, 100%. I couldn't agree with you more. The fact is, horses for courses. The long story short is to get the right person in for your company that's going to drive that to, whatever the strategy is, whatever the growth is, etc.

Terry Mallin: So, you're looking to make the offer itself, and you're making the offer now, just remember it's not all about money. With career driven individuals, there's a lot more behind it, as we touched on. You have to look at the overall package, people ... successful will look at the future, i.e pensions, and the detailed benefits that you get with that. Is it family healthcare? Is it individual healthcare? What's the sort of recognition for them doing a top job, is there a bonus on that? Is there a long term incentive for being within the company? You could set something for over five years, where if this person, say it's a sale person, they bring in x amount of revenue over those five years, then they'll be due a percentage of a chunky bonus at the end of it, depending on that specific value. That encourages long term retention, as well as that person feeling rewarded for the growth of that business.

Terry Mallin: That's all to be taken into consideration.


Scott Buchanan: Just on that point Terry, I think there's a perception that all people- The obvious one that comes up now, especially because of the cost of it, is medical care. You can have the individual that has the single membership medical care. You can also have the family plan, and I think there are various shapes and guises of that. But actually, if you're a single gentleman or a single lady who has no family, having a whole family scheme but coming out of- [crosstalk 00:12:03]


Terry Mallin: [crosstalk 00:12:06] A free spirit, a free spirit.


Scott Buchanan: - A free spirit. It's of no relevance for that person, but maybe they would rather have a bigger engine in their car, maybe they'd rather have a pink car. I think that the point here is having an element of flexibility, because everyone is different. What we're seeing now is that companies that are rigid, without an element of flexibility- I do appreciate there are consequences to other members within the organization, which is important and needs to be taken account of, but making sure that the right person is in the company for the right reasons and will stay long term because they're happy in their job.


Terry Mallin: Back to the long term side of things, you've got to make sure that when you're thinking of this person, you're thinking of making an offer. Question yourself, is there enough career progression opportunities within our company? Is there enough challenge to keep this person engaged within the business for the longer term?


Scott Buchanan: We say longer term, but actually you could have an agreement with a client that there's an element of change, they've got a period of growth that they need to implement and that they hire in a key operation's manager to make sure that happens. Although that's permanent, that can be for an 18 month period, it could be for a 3 year period. As long as both parties understand what the objectives are, then both will excel and both will do well for the longer term.


Terry Mallin: 100%. So covering all that off. Make sure you cover all bases, put yourself in a candidates shoes, would you accept the role? If you say yes to that, top job, let's get the offer made. However, if you're questioning any of that, think about it, sit back, think about what you would be looking for, put yourself in the candidates shoes and make the decision, would it be the right move or not to make this person an offer.

Terry Mallin: If you have any questions at all, phone myself or Scott, or any Recruitment Advice. Just drop us an email or a phone call. Visit, or email or


Announcer: Thanks for listening to Manufacturing Ignition podcast. If you've made it this far, we take it that you enjoyed the show. In return, we'd love it if you'd leave us a rating and review on iTunes. Subscribe while you're there and we'll catch you for the next episode.


Are you interested in pursuing new manufacturing career opportunities? Please arrange a 15 minute career call with us today




Helping Manufacturing Professionals across the UK to find their next career move



Currently there are no comments. Be the first to post one!

Post Comment


Featured Jobs

Managing Director / General Manager - Precision Engineering

Managing Director / General Manager - Precision Engineering  Bonfire Recruitment have a significant opportunity for a experienced Managing Director / General Manager for a truly unique opportunity at its retained metal finishing client based in Aberdeen.   Reporting to the...

Full Details

Managing Director - Engineering

Managing Director - Engineering  Based in South Yorkshire Bonfire Recruitment is retained in the recruitment of a Top Tier Manufacturing General Manager / Managing Director for its exceptional heavy engineering focussed client, a high value...

Full Details

Sales Manager - Flexible Packaging

Sales Manager - Flexible Packaging  Bonfire Recruitment are working with a market leading supplier and manufacturer of flexible packaging products to recruit an experienced Sales / Business Development Manager based in from home in the UK....

Full Details

Site Technical Manager

Site Technical Manager  Bonfire Recruitment are working exclusivley and retained with a leading food manufacturing company based in the North West, to recruit a Site Technical Manager. Reporting to the Managing Director, the...

Full Details

Head of Innovation

Head of Innovation  We are working with a well established food production business to recruit a key position, Head of Innovation based in Lancashire. This is a Leadership Team role, a great opportunity...

Full Details

Field Based EPC Project Manager - Minerals , Process , Chemicals

Field Based EPC Project Manager - Minerals , Process , Chemicals  Bonfire recruitment is retained with a UK multi-disciplined capital equipment manufacturer in the recruitment of a permanent field based Project Engineering Manager to focus the build of multiple high value...

Full Details