True story. A recruiter at Agile was working with a candidate for a position at a client company. It was a terrific opportunity, and the candidate – let’s call him Chuck (not his real name) – wanted the job. Chuck had been unemployed for several months, so it’s only normal that he was anxious about closing the deal. The process was taking longer than he had anticipated, partly because the hiring manager was on the fence about Chuck. Although the recruiter worked hard to sell Chuck to the client while reassuring the candidate throughout the process that he still had a good chance, what ensued is unfortunate.
As our recruiter was working with the client in the decision-making process, Chuck neglected to inform her that another company had made him an offer. Fearful that our client might not extend an offer, Chuck reluctantly accepted the other company’s offer even though his preference was to work for our client. The following day, the recruiter called Chuck with great news – he got the job! Chuck broke the news that he had already accepted another offer. Knowing that our client’s opportunity was a much better fit, the recruiter took time to talk about and compare the two offers with Chuck. It was a mute point. He was disappointed, but a deal was a deal and Chuck wasn’t going to back out of the offer he had agreed to.
Poor Chuck. If only he had remembered the ingredients necessary for the right job offer: COCA. No, not Cocoa – COCA! COCA is a series of questions our recruiters ask throughout the interview process to keep abreast of what’s happening on the candidate’s end. By communicating openly and responding honestly to COCA, candidates enable our recruiters to expedite the hiring process when necessary and ensure we get them the best possible offer. Here are the questions that comprise COCA:
C - Has there been any changes in your job search since we last spoke? Where do you stand in the interview process?
O - Do you have any offers pending?
C - Do you have any concerns about this position? It is important for us to address any concerns now that you are interviewing so that we can get the best offer for you if it is extended.
A - If an offer was extended, would you accept the position?
Had Chuck informed the recruiter about the changes occurring during the interview process, the recruiter could have communicated with the client the urgency for making a quick decision. If Chuck had contacted the recruiter immediately before accepting the other company’s offer, the recruiter would have been in a position to counsel him and approach our client about the existing offer. The recruiter didn’t realize that timing was so crucial to Chuck because he had never expressed concern about his unemployment status. And it wasn’t until Chuck had accepted another offer that she learned how much he preferred the opportunity with our client.
So what happened with Chuck? He took the job he didn’t want, and realized after his first day at work that he had made the wrong decision. But there is a happy ending to the story. The following day, Chuck contacted our recruiter and asked her if there was anything she could do. Because she truly believed that this candidate was the right fit for our client, she was able to re-engage Chuck and he received an offer shortly thereafter.
The moral of the story? Don’t be like Chuck. When working with a recruiter during the job search, remember the recipe for a successful job offer: COCA.