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Resignation and The Counter Offer

A sign of more prosperous times, but some points to be aware of

Whilst the rise of the counter offer is a sign of the market improving and becoming more candidate-led, it is littered with pot holes for both employers and employees.

As we all know only too well, recent economic challenges have had far reaching consequences for many in the property industry at all levels. With redundancies being rife, recruitment freezes and no graduate intakes there are now far fewer professionals at many levels. We are finding that in particular that there is a worrying decrease in the number of individuals with 6 years of experience or less – clearly this is down to companies not being able to recruit graduates due to a lack of work and/or confidence in the market and in some cases having to let junior people go.

Now that the market is showing some sustained signs of improvement and most companies have gained in confidence it’s a battle to coax individuals from a relatively small pool to leave the company they’ve worked with over the last few difficult years. And when individuals decide that in fact they are ready for a change, those companies will often break all of their own rules about salaries and bonuses in their bid to retain their talent and to avoid the considerable headache of trying to find a replacement.

If you are reading this and you’ve recently decided that it’s time to look at greener pastures, you are probably thinking “this is all well and good but why is it relevant to me I’ve decided it’s time for a move and that’s that”
We have seen so many instances where a candidate has said just that and then proceeded to accept a counter offer, it really is a much harder situation than anyone ever anticipates. Of course there are some situations where it would be seemingly impossible to turn down a counter-offer, it’s therefore important that you consider all of the options.

Let’s face it, counter-offers are always flattering. However, the reasons behind it being offered need to be addressed. Many employers will genuinely be sorry when their employee resigns and instinctively respond with promises of promotion, higher salaries, career progression, more exciting projects, better work/life balance and even guaranteed bonuses (sometimes slightly ironically referred to as “loyalty bonuses”). However you also need to think about the timing of these, as your company now has an unwanted vacancy that takes time and money to fill.

It is important that you think about the following points:

  • When you started looking for a new position what were the reasons behind this? Have those reasons disappeared? Will staying in your current position resolve these issues or is it likely they will crop up again in the future?
  • Your company now has to find a replacement, a process that costs time and money on training and developing a replacement for you. So when the counter-offer is presented, ask yourself the following question: is my current employer making me this offer because they have my best interests in mind or because it will be more convenient for them, for me to stay?
  • If the counter-offer includes a higher salary or position, you need to ask yourself if you are simply getting your next raise or promotion in advance. You need to think about how you will progress after this, will you have to accept yet another job to get the raise or promotion you deserve after that? Why did they not offer you this promotion sooner?
  • Statistics highly suggest that many of those who accept counter-offers leave within the year. Once you hand in your resignations your loyalty to the company may always be questioned and many employers assume that you will look again. You need to be aware that if you stay your relationship with your employer may change.
  • Think about the new job. Just as there are reasons for leaving your current company, you have seen significant opportunities in this new company or you would not have considered moving. Just because you have received a counter-offer these opportunities do not disappear.

If you intend to seriously consider a counter-offer, be sure to ask your present employer to confirm all the details of the counter-offer in writing before making any final decision. Keep your potential new employer (or your recruitment consultant) fully informed of the discussions your current employer is having with you as well as your thought process. This is admittedly easier if you have a good recruitment consultant as they should be able to provide a sounding board for the internal battle that you are probably experiencing! If you do ultimately decide to take a counter offer, make sure that you leave things on good terms with the other company and whatever you do don’t try to prompt both companies to enter into a bidding war over you. It is very obvious when a candidate attempts this and not only does it irritate businesses but it could also leave you without either of the positions.

When you are ready to make that move, it is important that before resigning you should sign a contract of employment with your new employer. This will not only help to confirm your decision with your boss but also make the transition easier for you.

The next step is the resignation letter which needs to be handed directly to your boss. This helps you maintain the initiative and remain in control. If a better opportunity exists elsewhere then hopefully your boss will appreciate this and you can leave with an amicable departure. The property industry is after all a small world and you never know when your paths will cross again…

“We wish we had known about KDH before we did. Since meeting the team that Kirsty has assembled and working with them to determine who are optimum candidates are it has also helped us focus our minds on our company structure and business model. To that end, we are continually amazed at who they are able to match us with. We hope to keep growing as long as they can help us to grow.”

“Kirsty provides an unparalleled level of service and candidates to us, her knowledge of the market and ability to get to know our business, and each candidate is a rare find in recruitment. Kirsty delivers only the most suitable candidates and secures them in her professional and friendly manner. She truly is our trusted recruitment partner.”

“Kirsty has revolutionised my view of recruitment consultants. She is professional and committed to finding the right people. Importantly, she understands Quod and the type of people that we want to be part of our business. Kirsty takes the strain out of the interview process, so that we are only seeing good people with the potential to meet what we are looking for, and has been successful in finding a number of valued people in Quod. She is also personable, fun and easy to get along with – something that is important to us in all the people we work with.”

“KDH have a highly professional approach and are thorough in all of their work. The integrity and personable nature of all their consultants make them both trustworthy and reliable. I have used them for a number of headhunting / executive searches for senior staff within Barton Willmore and due to their approach and securing us excellent results, I have recommended them across the Practice where they are now working on other senior roles. I therefore would have no hesitation in recommending them to others.”

“The KDH team have been a breath of fresh air for us. As a busy management team, we depend entirely on their judgement and intuition to send us only candidates who they feel will truly work in our business. They pride themselves on being different and we certainly feel that their service is without parallel. It is just a great sadness to us that they don’t operate in all of the fields in which we work, so that we could dispense with all of our other consultants. Fantastic job, ladies. Keep up the great work!”

“I worked with KDH trying to source a new assistant Landscape Architect and they were very professional and found someone for me with a short space of time. Sam is still with us and proving to be a great asset. Thank you. Would not hesitate to recommend KDH to others.”

“I have worked with KDH Associates since joining HTA Design LLP 2 years ago. They have assisted us with Planning, Architecture and Landscape roles. KDH are friendly, professional and extremely helpful and most of all they listen to our requirements carefully in order to introduce us to relevant, high calibre candidates who fit our needs well. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend KDH Associates to fellow HR professionals, as well as to those seeking employment.”

“KDH are our go to guys for recruitment. Their business has grown up with ours and as a consequence, KDH have a thorough understating of our culture, they think deeply about what we need to grow our business and this ensure the candidates they send are of the highest quality”

I had the pleasure of working with KDH. I would not hesitate to recommend them to anyone who needs an energetic and motivated talent searcher. We had specific requirements for our growing team and they not only went out of their way to understand our bespoke needs but also showed a phenomenal tenacity to find the appropriate individuals. Now I know if I need an experienced individual to join our team, KDH is my first port of call!

“I work as a consultant in Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and was looking for a new career challenge. I got the job I wanted through KDH. From the outset, the support I received from my recruitment consultant, Chris, was invaluable. He really went the extra mile to ensure that I was fully prepared for my interviews, was always responsive and chased up some job related queries on my behalf. I’m very grateful for all this support and would definitely recommend the KDH to anyone looking for a new career challenge or to fill a vacancy with the best candidates.”

“I have been so impressed with KDH! They were brilliant to work with, very personable, and provided results very quickly. I am so grateful for everything they have done, and would not hesitate to recommend them to anyone”

“KDH helped me through every step of the process, offering advice and support from the initial enquiry stage right through to the first few months of my new job. They were able to answer the difficult questions that you may not feel comfortable asking a new employer and gave me essential tips, advice and insight into the new role that was ultimately fundamental to me securing the job.”

“KDH approached me when I wasn’t actively looking for a new position. They provided a very clear overview of the opportunity and I was really impressed with all of the communication from them regarding the process and so appreciative of their advice ahead of the interviews. They facilitated a really natural first meeting with the company and made me feel really comfortable every step of the way.”

“I found KDH great to deal with. They are very committed, enthusiastic, and quick to respond to my emails (at whatever time of day they were sent). I really felt they had my best interests at heart throughout the whole process and even now I get the occasional email from them asking how things are going in the new job. I couldn’t recommend KDH enough.”

“I cannot thank the team at KDH enough for helping me find my new role in London. I was nervous about relocating from Australia to the UK, but working with KDH made the whole process much smoother. I was impressed initially when I first spoke with them via telephone while still in Australia and even more so when I met the team upon arriving in London. KDH are very personable, informed and their knowledge of the industry and various firms throughout London and further afield made me feel confident that they were identifying roles that would be a good fit for me.

They were hands on throughout the whole process, keeping me well briefed and informed before and after interviews. I am very grateful for their assistance and I would recommend KDH to anyone looking for a recruitment consultant in the town planning sector.”

“I contacted KDH Associates in December 2014 when I was looking for a change in role. As a town planning professional KDH Associates with their specific expertise in property and planning were an obvious choice for me, as I knew they had key contacts within the industry. My main point of contact was Lucie Cox who set up a face to face meeting from which we worked out what my key career goals were and to outline what I was looking for in an employer. The personal touch from Lucie ensured that any potential opportunity that was offered to me for consideration had been tailor-fitted to my needs. Lucie soon put me forward for a great role for which I was successful and as a result I would highly recommend KDH Associates.”

“ Thank you to KDH for all their efforts in securing me a fantastic job at Berkeley Homes. Lucie was by far the most conscientious, professional and foremost for me personally, caring of any recruitment consultant that I have dealt with. This made changing jobs an enjoyable experience as opposed to a chore.”

“I have found that very often recruitment consultants make the process of moving jobs feel transactional and impersonal. I have found that KDH have been totally different to this, they really looked after me, took time to get to know me as a person and as a professional and gave me all of the information to help me make a career defining decision. This is an approach many claim to have but fail to deliver. I will certainly recommend KDH to people I know.”

“KDH was a pleasure to work with. The professional attitude in which they work is truly excellent. They were always there to help out, whatever time of day and they always go above and beyond their job duties. The information and everything that they provided was just what I wanted and the transition to my new position was very smooth. Thank you KDH for everything, unfortunately I don’t think you’ll be finding me another job in a very long time.”

“ I wasn’t looking for a job when I was approached by KDH Associates. I found they made an effort to get to know me and with no pressure at any point, they managed to seize my attention for a job that they thought I would be a perfect fit for. I have now been at LDA for six months and I am absolutely confident that I made the right decision.

They were friendly, professional, reliable and very responsive. Their knowledge of the market is very good and their listening and communication skills are impeccable. I was impressed by their level of professionalism. All in all, a very positive experience dealing with KDH, a recruitment consultant who actually works with both the client and the candidate to achieve the best result.”