Don't leave me this way... Dealing with Counter Offers

One of the hardest parts of recruitment is when a candidate decides to take a counter offer and stays put. All the hard work that you and the hiring client (not least of course the candidate) puts in evaporates in an instant. I always thought it was just the odd unlucky deal that falls through the cracks, but when I read the Loyalty Premium Report for 2018 I was shocked that it doesn’t happen more often.

A total of 1,002 UK employees were polled about the things that would make them reconsider remaining at the company and 45 per cent of respondents claimed a 25 per cent pay rise would do the job. That sounds like an eye watering amount, right? So, what else can companies do?

Changes to job titles were also effective in changing workers’ minds – as 1 in 4 (23 per cent) would be tempted to stay if offered a promotion. Meanwhile, 1 in 5 (19 per cent) would remain for a 10 per cent pay increase. Maybe offer working from home as the poll shows that 17 per cent could be won back with flexible working options, and 16 per cent with the promise of a bonus. 

Don’t forget it’s not just the person who has handed in their notice that you have to think about. 62 per cent of workers claiming that colleague departures make them feel unsettled, and more than 1 in 5 even having considered getting a new job themselves as a result, sometimes the impact of staff resignations can have on the wider workforce is damaging enough to warrant avoiding the situation altogether.

Other recent research released by One4all Rewards highlighted the clear financial benefit of fighting to retain staff, revealing that the value of the loyalty of a worker earning the average full-time salary in the UK stands at £6,335.31 – or 23 per cent of the average annual wage.

The Top 10 Things Employees Say Would Make Them Reconsider Leaving a Job:

  • A 25 per cent pay rise – 45 per cent
  • A promotion – 23 per cent
  • A 10 per cent pay rise – 19 per cent
  • Flexible working (e.g. flexi time / the opportunity to work from home on some occasions) – 17 per cent
  • A bonus – 16.67 per cent
  • Increased benefits (e.g. a larger bonus) – 15 per cent
  • Being given reassurance about job security – 13 per cent
  • Training and development opportunities – 11 per cent


Yes, it is strange for a recruiter to talk about ways for companies to retain staff. While it is easy to throw money at the problem and hope it stays, I think it is damaging to keep staff who are simply in it for a quick pay rise.

What do you think? Would a pay rise have kept you in your old job or would you have had the confidence to strike out and find a new career?

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