Hot Job Market Means Candidates Must Ask the Right Questions

Zeynep Erk, Founder and CEO

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TORONTO, ONTARIO, CANADA, May 2, 2022 / — With rampant talent shortages and the Great Reshuffle in full swing, it’s more important than ever for candidates to ask the right questions before accepting an offer. Candidates must make sure they have the relevant information before accepting a job, in order to avoid making a change they’ll regret, or one that could even damage their future career prospects.

“A lot of people are changing jobs, even careers, right now,” says Zeynep Erk, founder and CEO of HRH Talent Solutions. “Some of these changes aren’t well thought out, and they’re putting job seekers in the position of having to defend ‘job-hopping’ in future interviews.”

Job seekers’ resumes and online profiles can be marred by a series of rapid job changes, Erk says, but that damage can be prevented by asking the right questions during the hiring process.

Candidates should know the job title and should have a complete role description to review. Details of the compensation package should also be provided; not just the salary or wage, but any additional benefits the company provides. The prospective employee should also know who their manager is, and the rest of the team with whom they’ll be working.

The key, according to Erk, is to get all the important details in writing. “With more companies hiring remote and hybrid employees, and more steps in the hiring process taking place virtually, the onboarding process is changing.” Candidates need to know about the expected work arrangements and their schedule ahead of time, especially if they’re not going to be in the office every day. “If companies don’t provide this information, it’s the candidate’s responsibility to ask for it, and to get it in writing,” says Erk, who has over 17 years of experience in talent, people, and culture.

With more interviews being conducted by phone and videoconference, Erk sees more people accepting roles while still unclear about aspects related to their future in the job. This is likely because this kind of information is more readily shared during in-person interviews, which tend to be more conversational. Erk recommends that candidates should ask probing questions about performance expectations, future opportunities for professional development, likely career paths, and even whether significant changes are expected for the company or the role.

Candidates and hiring managers alike are making decisions very rapidly, due to the overheated labour market, particularly in technology and related sectors. This increases the risk of job seekers making a decision based on incomplete information. In turn, this can make another job change in the short term more likely.

“The market is moving quickly,” Erk notes. “It’s easy to overlook important details when you feel under pressure to make a decision, and end up feeling a kind of buyer’s remorse.” Job seekers can avoid making potentially costly mistakes, she says. “First, make a list of the factors that are important to you. Then, create a checklist of questions to ask the potential employer. Refer back to this list before accepting an offer, to make sure you’ve gotten the information you need. If you haven’t, it’s more important than ever to ask the question.”

Zeynep Erk, Founder and CEO
HRH Talent Solutions
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