You have been successful in being offered a new job and you need to hand your notice in with your current employer. In the current climate I would assume that you will receive a counteroffer as they fight to keep hold of you.

Deciding whether or not to accept a counteroffer can be difficult and there are many factors to consider. Your choice is likely to have a significant impact on your career so shouldn’t be taken lightly.

Before you decide what to do, there are a few things to bear in mind….

Why do companies make counter offers?

Nearly 50% of employers will counteroffer when one of their employees resign. Counteroffers are even more common in candidate-driven markets like we are facing at the moment and the current skills shortage make it very difficult for them to find and recruit a replacement for you.

It can cost as much as 200% of your salary for them to recruit a replacement for you. If your salary was £30,000, this could amount to £60,000 when you factor in a drop in productivity and recruitment and training expenses.

I would ask you think about their reason for counteroffering you…. Is it because they don’t want to lose a really valued employee? Or is it cheaper to keep hold of you and offer you a pay rise, rather than recruiting and train someone else?

I would say that there are currently over 50% of people accepting counteroffers at the moment. At the time, you are flattered by your manager wanting to do whatever it takes to keep hold of you.

It is often easier to stay as you won’t have to learn a new role and meet new colleagues to try and befriend. You already know your current company and how to do your job, and their promises sound amazing when they talk to you about extra money or further training. Why not stay as its all so comfortable????

However, 80% of employees who accept a counteroffer will usually leave within six months and 90% within a year.

Money isn’t always enough to overcome the other problems you have at work that made you want to start looking at a new role in the first place. All it does it put a shiny plaster over your issues, but when this peels off, you realise that the culture is still the same, your manager who bullies you hasn’t changed and the fact that you don’t get any reward or recognition for the work you are doing is still overlooked all the time.

Why you shouldn’t accept a counteroffer

  • Only around 10% of employees leave a job due to money. So, there is a good change that the reason you are looking for a new job is something else that usually wont disappear just because they have offered you more money. Remember your reasons for leaving in the first place and there is always more than one. Think carefully think about your original motivations and whether the increase in pay compensates enough to make you happy staying at your current company.
  • There is a good chance that accepting a counter offer will damage your relationship with your employer. Remember that you handed your notice in and you are only staying due to their new offer. This will probably mean a lack of trust and they will probably question your loyalty in the future. They will wonder if you will accept a better offer else where again in the future.
  • Many employees that accept a counteroffer often end up feeling “pushed out” of their current organisation. And, sometimes, companies go as far as to create a contingency plan and start looking for someone to fill your position before you can find a better offer.
  • You probably started to look for a new job because you felt underappreciated and restricted. Maybe you were passed over for a promotion or simply weren’t given the opportunities to progress. At some point, you probably voiced these concerns to your employer, but they weren’t effectively addressed. It’s likely that these issues will continue after you accept the counteroffer and will eventually cause you to resign — this time for good.
  • After accepting a counteroffer, your job security could decrease. If your company needs to make redundancies, you’ll probably be at the top of the list. You had already expressed a desire to leave and are not as loyal or committed to the company as other employees. Even worse, your current employer may have only given you a counteroffer to buy them time to find a new employee to replace you.

Deciding whether or not to accept a counteroffer can be challenging. It’s important to think about your options and what I have covered here in detail.

You may find that you need more information about your potential new employer. In this case, it’s often best to speak to your recruiter, so you have all the facts you need to make the best choice for your personal and professional growth.

Being brave and turning down a counteroffer and moving onto a new company could take your career to the next level. Your new company might offer better career development opportunities or, at very least offer you a chance to tackle a new challenge and reach a new personal best. Are you ready for the next step in your career?

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