When you’ve successfully recruited a new professional, the golden rule of start dates is:
“Get your candidate on board as soon as possible!”
By shortening the transition period, you decrease the opportunity for problems to arise, such as:
- Buyer’s remorse.
- Counteroffers from the current employer.
- Competing offers from other companies.
Understand that people don’t resign very often so they are unfamiliar with the process and don’t always understand what is acceptable, expected, or the best way to proceed.
They often need a little coaching.
While everyone wants to leave on good terms, explain that there’s never really a “good” time to leave an employer, and while it may be “nice” to give 30 days of notice, 2 weeks is generally accepted. Further, when they give notice, warn them that their old environment may change. There may even be hostility.
Help them refocus, stressing that your company has exciting projects waiting and that you would like them on board as soon as possible. Keep in contact with them. You want to replace any regrets they may have about leaving their old position with enthusiasm about the new challenges and opportunities that await them.
Sometimes, their employer will release them the same day as the resignation, so let your new hire know that if they want to bump up their starting date to an earlier time, you can get it done for them.
Delaying a start date has its risks! Always try to compress the time frame of acceptance to start.