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​​How Startups Can Increase Their Candidate Offer Acceptance Rate

In my experience, talent acquisition is one of the most pressing challenges growing startups face. There’s just too much competition right now for the best talent, so emerging businesses are struggling to increase their candidate offer acceptance rate.

Good teams keep a business running, but to grow and develop, you need a great team. Since talent acquisition is a big struggle for startups, we put this guide together to help you secure better hires. We’ll cover tried-and-tested strategies that many fast-growing startups have already leveraged to improve their offer acceptance rates.

Why growing businesses struggle to secure offer acceptances

Unfortunately, fast-growing startups and emerging businesses have a hard time with talent acquisition. You’re competing with established brands and megacorps that have a significant edge in hiring, primarily because:

  • They offer better salaries and benefits
    If you’re bootstrapped or coming out of your first seed round, you won’t have the funds to compete with large companies. Established comes have lucrative revenue streams that allow them to offer higher salaries and employee benefits, making them more appealing to top talent. 
  • They have more presence and employer branding
    Megacorps have had years to polish their employer branding and make themselves appealing to the best tech talent.
    Many of them have established mentorship and internship programs to improve their talent sourcing, and every potential applicant has a good idea of the company’s culture. If your brand lacks employer branding, it can be difficult to sell top talent on your work culture.
  • They look better on candidates’ CVs 
    Employees value professional development opportunities greatly, and having Facebook or IBM on your CV undoubtedly looks great. Young talent, in particular, is attracted to companies that look good on their CV so that they can secure better positions in the future.

How growing organizations can optimize their candidate offer acceptance rate

So, the odds are stacked against you, but does that mean startups can’t hire good talent? Not quite. 

Initially struggling with your talent acquisition is normal – you’re not the first startup to face this challenge and you definitely won’t be the last, either. But there are ways to attract the best talent and increase your candidate offer acceptance rates. 

Here are some tried-and-tested strategies that can help you increase your offer acceptance rates significantly. 

Understand your strengths – and play to them

Before you begin engaging with potential employees, it’s essential to understand what you have to offer. You might lack the resources to offer the best salaries and benefits, but you can offer career development opportunities and positive work culture. It’s easier to climb the ladder in growing companies, which provides young professionals with a chance to accelerate their career growth.

Work on your employer branding

Yes, megacorps and large enterprises have exceptional employer branding. But that doesn’t mean yours can’t be good, too. You might not obtain the same reach as major brands, or offer the same appeal, but you can make your pitch to the right talent. 

For example, at WeCP, we use our blog and social media platforms to project our employer branding. We have a running series of ‘interns in the spotlight’ where we interview interns and showcase our healthy, close-knit working environment. Our team is made up of young, dynamic, and skilled professionals, which is the kind of talent we attract.

So after figuring out what your unique offering is, project your message loud and clear and let your ideal talent find you.

Optimize the candidate experience

Research shows that more than 50% of candidates turn down job offers because of poor candidate experience. If applicants feel that their talent, time, and value aren’t appreciated, they will not take your offer.

This presents another opportunity for you to stand out. By optimizing the candidate experience, you can secure a higher offer acceptance rate. A positive candidate experience is achieved through choosing the right testing methodology, establishing a frictionless assessment process, and creating a good interview experience.

For example, if you assess tech candidates with irrelevant questions, they may doubt the quality of work at your company. You can resolve this issue by creating role-specific job questions, instead of relying on generic test questions.

Streamline your screening process

A lengthy recruitment funnel ridden with friction can kill your offer acceptance rates. When candidates apply to work at your company, you should assume they have applied to organizations too. If your recruitment process is slow, candidates may accept a competing offer. And if your recruitment process isn’t streamlined, candidates may bow out due to a poor experience.

Also, remember that megacorps often have lengthy, comprehensive hiring processes. So if you can streamline your recruitment process and reduce your time to hire, you can beat them to the best talent. 

Nurture your talent pools

Creating and nurturing a talent pool is one of the most effective ways to improve your talent sourcing. A talent pool is your network of potential applicants – they may be aware of your company but not yet interested in joining you. 

Maintaining a hiring pool gives you deeper insights into candidates’ capabilities and their suitability for your company. And equally important, interacting with your talent pool strengthens your employer branding and company image. So when applicants from your pool are ready to change jobs, or when you start looking to fill a new role, you can count on them to apply.

When nurturing your talent pool, avoid being too ‘business-y’. Try to provide your network with value wherever possible, whether it’s advice, insights, or even valuable content. This helps you establish a powerful but professional relationship with candidates.

Choose your interviewers wisely

Interviews are one of the most important touchpoints in your recruitment funnel. Your interview should be well-planned, and it is perhaps more important to choose a good interviewer.

Interviewers represent your company’s image and influence an applicant’s first real impression of your brand. If your interviews do not carry or present themselves well, applicants may be discouraged from applying altogether. Just like the interviewer is evaluating candidates, they too are assessing your company and the interviewer. 

It’s important for your interviewers to present themselves professionally and to have the necessary experience and people skills to execute a successful interview. They should be skilled at evaluating applicants meaningfully, communicating the role’s requirements, and making the applicant feel confident in your organization

How WeCP helps improve candidate offer acceptance rates

I’ve highlighted some vital ways to improve your candidate offer acceptance rates, which include streamlining the recruitment process and optimizing the candidate experience. We built WeCP to speak to these needs and help recruiters create a candidate-first hiring process.

WeCP is an all-in-one tech recruitment solution for assessing candidates’ technical abilities and strengths through video interviews, skills assessment tests, and advanced evaluation criteria. Our platform also helps you hire faster and better, through:

Optimized technical screening

WeCP has not just helped us in faster screening but it has also enhanced our talent attraction strategy. Real-world problem statements and live demonstration of coding skills during interviews has set a better tech image of Ness’s engineering culture among candidates.
Talent Procurement Manager, Ness Digital Engineering

WeCP helps you assess candidates’ technical skills and track their performance across 12+ metrics. This streamlined evaluation process helps hiring managers make data-driven decisions and secure the best hires.

Fully integrated hiring solution

For the first time we could successfully introduce coding tests to screen our job applicants. The candidates that WeCP’s tool recommended are doing extremely well in the job. After deploying WeCP in the recruiting process, our customers noticed a significant hike in our team’s productivity and overall delivery growth.
Amodh Sinha
Senior TA Manager, Quinnox

WeCP’s coding tests seamlessly integrate with popular ATS and LMS platforms. You can easily keep track of the data and generate valuable reports with it. With a rich library of tech tests, video interviewing solutions, automated scheduling, and more, WeCP is a fully integrated recruitment solution.

Robust knowledge base

Using WeCP we have been able to scale our hiring by almost 500% across 15-20 universities in a single go.
Maitri Vohra
Talent Acquisition, Toppr

WeCP isn’t only known for our leading recruitment SaaS solution. We also offer world-class resources to help recruiters and hiring managers streamline their hiring efforts and optimize tech talent acquisition.

Schedule a personalized demo with us to increase your candidate offer acceptance rate and secure the best hires.

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