5 Reasons Why You Should Never Accept a Counter Offer

In 2014 after a decade in recruitment, my candidates received more counter offers to stay than in any previous year in the industry and it looks like the trend is set to continue this year. I believe there is a famous statistic that 90% of candidates still leave employment after accepting a counter offer in the following 12 months. So here are 5 very good reasons why you shouldn't in the same circumstances:

Accept a counter offer and.....You will leave anyway!

Salaries (particularly in the software industry) pay far better than most industries. So when a candidate decides to leave employment their motivation is not always centred around remuneration but other factors such as skills versus value, working conditions, company culture and lack of new projects. Statistically if you accepted a counter offer from your current employer it doesn't get to the real issue of why you wanted to leave in the first place. Consequently most candidates will eventually leave their employment and all they have achieved is delay the inevitable.

You will lose trust in your own organisation

I have heard time and time again from many candidates who have accepted counter offers that their colleagues do not always treat them the same as before they handed in their notice. The situations of course are all unique but think about it, if you got a pay rise to stay; was that earned through merit of your work or because the company did not want to invest time and money in replacing you?

Think about the effect that will have on your team and indeed how Managers will perceive your worth. The sensible thing if you ever decide to leave for financial reasons is to ask your employer for a pay rise and back up why you should receive one before you look for new employment rather than afterwards.

You will impact your own network

The effect of accepting a counter offer doesn't just affect the candidate it also impacts the Recruiter, the prospective employer and your current employer and everybody involved in the process to draw you a job offer in the first place. In today's era the impact of social media and social profiling is that people work with people they recommend and your network's importance will decide how you are seen by others in the marketplace. This could impact you with hidden job vacancies i.e. the special ones which aren't advertised where Recruiters work closely with employers to find people through their existing networks.

Your Career is likely to stagnate

According to careercast.com 80% of survey respondents said that relationships with co-workers deteriorate and productivity falls among employees who stay. From a career prospective accepting a counter offer has the reverse effect and is more likely you will be put aside when the next promotion is up for grabs.

Listen to the advice of many and always revisit the WHY!

What is a counter offer? Well it normally is an improved financial package and/or a promise to fix things the candidate isn't happy with. So ask yourself why am I considering a counter offer? As the reason most people put themselves through a process is for a better job opportunity and not for immediate financial gain.

Finally all you need to do is Google ‘counter offers' there is a reason why there is so much advice ‘against' and very little ‘for' these. Ultimately most of the time counter offer's are a short term fix to a long term problem.

Guest Blog by Jamie Dillon, Lead Consultant – Mobile

Catrin Jones

Operations Manager

Catrin is a jack of all trades at Skillsearch, but she's master of them all too! The unflappable, enthusiastic face that will be your go-to for any questions - that's for contractors, clients and us in the office as well. She's always ready and willing to help and we haven't yet found a problem that she can't solve. She does have an Achilles heel though as she hasn’t yet worked out how to whistle, which would really come in handy when it comes to her new fur baby – Evie the Cockapoo! 

Europe: +44 (0)1273 287 007

North America: +1 (437) 887 2477


View all Catrin Jones's jobs