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2015 dubbed “Year of the candidate” – but what does that mean for you?

2015 dubbed the year of the candidate

As we advance further and further from the dark days of recession so to do we move away from a time when employers seemed to call all the shots.

This new year signifies much more than simply a change in date. It’s about recognising that  - if you’re currently weighing up a potential job move – now more than ever, the odds are likely to be stacked in your favour.

So, what’s different?

Well, whilst it’s true that last year was also very candidate driven, a whole 12 months on has seen this sentiment heighten even further and as a result, you may find the following factors more prevalent than ever before. 

A time to revaluate your career goals?

If you’ve been contemplating a new challenge for a while now, 2015 could be the ideal time to make it happen. This doesn’t necessarily mean looking for a new employer, it could simply mean having a conversation with your manager about what your goals are over the next few years and identifying what may, or may not, be feasible in order to help you achieve them.
Whether you’d like more clarity on your career path, better training and development opportunities or simply a compromise on a more desirable work / life balance - with retention scoring high on the agenda for most companies, particularly when it comes to their most valued talent, now is the time to have that discussion.  The fact is, if it boosts your job satisfaction and makes you more motivated within your role, then it’s arguably a win-win situation for you and your employer. 

A significantly shorter time-to-hire

A change that is worth noting in the jobs market is the speeding up of the often long drawn out interview and decision making processes, which many businesses over the years have become so accustomed to. With increased confidence in the market and staff attrition on the rise, this is no longer a viable option, particularly if firms are to prevent integral departments being left understaffed and under-performing. 

As job seekers are now receiving multiple job offers, companies need to be aware that they’ll only secure the best talent for their business if they act fast. Whilst many candidates will rejoice at this development, if we were to pick faults, it does mean less opportunities to ‘wow’ that potential employer. That said however, if this didn’t occur from the outset, chances are it’s not going to be the right match for either party anyway.

The rise of the counter-offer 

For those who’ve already made the decision to move onto pastures new, particularly those considered high performers, what appears to be happening more and more is that your resignation letter will be met with a subsequent counter-offer.

This ultimately involves your employer offering you a more attractive remuneration package in a bid to entice you to stay.  If your reason for leaving was solely driven by salary then this could be an attractive proposition, however, if it was due to other factors then it’s worth questioning whether staying put is really the best decision for you. Often those who reconsider are just prolonging their inevitable departure and from a trust perspective, it’s worth recognising that you might not have the same relationship once your manager knows you’ve been looking elsewhere. 

If you do find yourself being presented with a counter-offer, the main thing is to remind yourself why you wanted to leave in the first place. If a salary increase is unlikely to make your current role more attractive then chances are it’s not for you. Who knows, sticking to your guns and going with the new job could be the best decision you ever made.

For more general interview tips click here.

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