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The Job Blog

Counter Offers: More than a little Counter Productive

Counter offers have become common place in today’s market, where talent is scarce and candidates are more cautious than ever about their careers and job security.

The fact is, finding a replacement for an employee leaving is a time consuming, often tedious and stressful process for a hiring manager. Further, for everyday that the replacement remains to be found, there are resultant costs incurred by the company.

Think about it, what is likely to run through your Manager’s mind, on receiving your unexpected notice?

  • This could not be happening at a worse time.”
  • “I already have one vacancy in my department, another one is the last thing I need right now.”
  • “We’re already working to full-capacity. Losing a team member is going to throw-out all of the project deadlines.”
  • “I’m already working to full capacity, how can I take on his / her workload now too?”
  • “This is a key member of staff. Letting him / her resign is going to cause a serious dip in team morale.”
  • “Perhaps I can keep him / her on? Just until I find a suitable replacement”

Now, think about yourself. It’s only natural to consider a counter offer. However, below are 5 definitive reasons why it is never a good idea to accept:

  1. A counter offer, by its nature, means that your employer will attempt to convince you to stay in your current position by matching the offer you have in hand. Although it may seem flattering and sound very attractive, remember the salary increase is most likely coming out the next bonus or increment. This increase was due to you anyway!
  2. Following the acceptance of a counter offer, the original reasons which prompted you to leave the company and search for other opportunities will remain and repeat themselves in future. The statistics show that 80% of candidates find themselves back on the job market within 6 months.
  3. Accepting a counter offer demonstrates your lack of loyalty. In a period of economic downturn and pressure to reduce costs, employees with inflated salaries and those who have shown a lack of commitment will be the first to go.
  4. Similarly, when promotion time comes around, don’t think for a moment your employer won’t remember who was loyal and who was not.
  5. Counter offers are typically nothing more than stalling devices, giving your employer time to replace you in case you decide to resign again.

Receiving a counter offer may sound like a very attractive proposition? However, do you really want to have to threaten to resign, before your current company will acknowledge what you are worth?