Four Mistakes Ruining Your Chances of a Job Offer
You’ve successfully made it through the interview stage and are feeling pretty confident that an offer is on its way. However, this is not the time to let your guard down. We’ve seen many candidates reach this point of the process, only to go and make critical errors that have cost them the role. Luckily, a bit of preparation can prevent a stumble at the last hurdle. Here are some common mistakes to avoid during the final stages of the Construction and Engineering job search.
Regardless of how well the interview went, most employers will still look for a second opinion through reference checks. It is important to be prepared for this, as it can be a huge red flag if the right people aren’t lined up to endorse your previous experience – whether that is onsite or offsite.
Choose referees from recent roles – information from your first engineering role a decade ago is not going to be able to provide up-to-date information on your performance. Managers typically make more effective referees than colleagues on the same level, as they can provide greater depth and context. Aim to use direct managers who can provide a quality testimonial, and your application will be better for it.
Finally, remember that with anyone you put down as a reference, it’s important to ask their permission (and provide warning) first. No one likes to be put on the spot, and giving some notice offers them a chance to prepare a good response and discuss your past performance more effectively.
Throwing a Curve Ball
When you’re this close to the finish line, now is not the time to mention the month-long holiday you have planned later in the year, or the fact that you need every second Monday off. Bringing up ‘conditions’ at this point will likely catch the employer off-guard, make them question your character, and even force them to think twice about whether they want to hire you after all.
We know that negotiation is a natural part of the process, but any major stipulations should be established long before the job offer stage. It can be tempting to take the prospect of a job offer for granted after an amazing interview, however adding in extra terms at the last minute often leaves the employer feeling blindsided. Being honest and upfront right from the beginning is the best way to build a good rapport and ensure you have adequate chance to negotiate before a formal offer is made.
Overdoing Salary Negotiations
While it’s important to be clear about your salary expectations and you don’t want to short change yourself, be sure to avoid sabotaging your efforts by taking negotiations too far and demanding a salary that is much higher than the current going rate.
One of our best tips on how to negotiate salary is to do adequate research on market rates ahead of time, and be realistic about the position of the company you’re looking to join. Once you know what you have to work with in your negotiations, make sure you’ve also got a clear idea of what is really important to you and where you’re willing to compromise.
At the end of the day, you need to weigh up whether a slightly higher figure is worth more to you than landing the role. If it’s a position with many opportunities for advancement (or something that gives you exposure to great projects), it may be more beneficial to play the long game. Each situation will be different, and chances are in most cases that you will need to meet them somewhere in the middle. Don’t forget to consider the whole package, either i.e. other benefits like a company vehicle, flexible working options and generous leave entitlement all come into play .
If you’re partnering with a specialist Construction and Engineering Recruitment Agency, they should have already discussed the salary range, represented you in negotiations, and will be available to provide further job offer negotiation tips.
Checking Out of the Process
If you’re left wondering what to do after an interview, then you’re not alone. Many candidates think their work is done once they’ve met the employers in person, but this is one of the biggest interview mistakes we have noticed.
With any good job search, it is vital to remain proactive throughout the entirety of the process. Even after you’ve had that interview, don’t make the mistake of going silent while awaiting an offer; you risk losing momentum, and the employer’s decision is not yet set in stone – it could still go to another candidate.
Whilst you don’t want to become a nuisance, you can still make yourself stand out by following up with the interviewer, responding promptly, and being available for any further questions they may have. Staying active in the process right up to the end will help you remain at the forefront of the Hiring Manager’s mind, and emphasises your interest in the role.
Waiting for a job offer can be an arduous experience for many candidates – but it doesn’t have to be this way. Be prepared and take care to avoid these four job search mistakes, and you’ll be on your way to your next role.
For more tips and tricks when it comes to job hunting and interviews, or support with your Construction & Engineering job search, feel free to reach out to our friendly team at any time.