Companies & Candidates: The 5 ground rules of job offer negotiation

As companies and candidates enter a fresh hiring season in 2020, the time will come where both parties stand at the door of a potential new partnership – arguably the most fragile period of the hiring process.

At this stage, when both have clearly indicated their interest in working together, there are certain rules of engagement which must be followed on both their parts to ensure neither snatches defeat from the jaws of victory, a leadership expert says.

“After the screening and interview processes are complete, sealing the deal becomes a delicate dance, where both employer and candidate must push for the best deal for themselves, without losing the goodwill established to date, and possibly jinxing the entire thing,” says Debbie Goodman, CEO of Jack Hammer, Africa’s largest independent executive search firm with offices across the continent as well as Los Angeles.

In her soon-to-be-released second book, Inside the Interview Goodmanshares insights and advice based on her decades-long experience as an executive search expert focusing on the sourcing and placement of top talent across the globe.

She says that the best time for candidates to negotiate for the best possible offer, is at the point where the prospective employer has indicated that they’re keen to make one and get the candidate on board.

“However, candidates need to bear in mind that just because the company has said they’re interested, doesn’t mean it’s a done deal, and so it’s really important to keep a balance between what you want, and not frustrating them or creating tensions over the negotiations,” she says.

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