How to make the perfect job offer for an IT specialist? | ITExpert

How to make an IT job offer nobody can refuse: 4+ life hacks and templates

Ann Paraskeeva 09.02.2023
ITExpert Blog Recruitment
How to make an IT job offer nobody can refuse: 4+ life hacks and templates
How to make an IT job offer nobody can refuse

At first glance, making an IT job offer seems like a simple task: a recruiter writes a letter with an offer, management approves it, and the offer “flies” to the candidate. However, few HRs and recruiters know how to make a truly memorable offer. That is why, according to Glassdoor, 17% of job offers are rejected at the offer stage. For Ukrainian IT, this figure is higher — up to 50–70% for various vacancies.

Do you want to “hook” a candidate from the first line? We’ve discussed with Technical Recruiter at ITExpert Anna Paraskeeva what a job offer is for, as well as shared some life hacks on how to make an offer that will be difficult to refuse.

How to make an IT job offer nobody can refuse: 4+ life hacks and templates

What is a Job Offer and why is it important in the IT field?

A job offer is an invitation for a potential employee to work in a specific position. A written job offer is perceived better than the words “you’re accepted.” A job offer is a kind of “transit point”, where you can still clarify points that are incomprehensible to the parties, agree on the nuances of cooperation that were missed during interviews, or emphasize special conditions. In the USA, Canada, and most of the EU countries, a job offer is a mandatory attribute for employment. 

Do not confuse a job offer with a counteroffer. The last one is the response given to an initial offer, making it obvious that the original offer was rejected. With it, the company tries to keep the employee on more favorable terms. The counteroffer is also used to fight competitors if they want to “hunt” an employee.

How to write the professional job offer letter

In addition to the full name of the candidate, it is important to indicate the main points and conditions of work. Let’s consider the main ones.

Tips for creating job offer

1. Job position

Specify the exact title of the position and a complete list of tasks. The candidate must understand what exactly he will do, since the same roles in different companies may imply a different set of functions, which means the necessary technologies and skills. 

If the candidate emphasized the direction he would like to develop in — and you can provide him with such an opportunity — this can also be written down in the offer. For example, further development in Lead, or development in automation for a Manual QA specialist. But! This should be indicated only if you really can provide such an opportunity.

I also advise you to indicate the main responsibilities of the candidate without vague phrases in the offer. It will help him to assess the workload and the main tasks that he will work on. Not everyone specifies tasks, although I think that this is quite important, and if you can specify them. Their indication in the offer will be a plus. Anna Paraskeeva

2. Work policy (remote/office/hybrid)

Candidates need to understand how the work will be structured — in the office, remotely, or in a hybrid format, and what will be the working hours — fixed or “floating”. It is especially worth describing it in detail if the schedule is tied to a different time zone or if you are working with a distributed team. Separately, you need to specify the duration of the vacation.

3. Salary

It is important to indicate compensation in gross (amount before tax) or net (after tax) as well as the type of registration. It is also worth fixing the frequency of payments and terms of salary review (whether there is a performance review or grades in the company), as well as pegging to the dollar or inflation. Overtime compensation is also an important aspect for IT specialists.

4. Perks and benefits

The compensation package usually includes health insurance (for the employee and his family), payment for sports and training + special benefits. For example, additional payments for volunteering, the 13th salary, or the opportunity to devote part of the working time to extra projects. All this should be added to the offer in the IT field to stand out from the competition.

5. Probationary period

Indicate the duration of the probationary period (if you have one) and the results that are expected from the candidate. Typically, in IT companies, the trial period lasts up to 2–3 months. At the same time, an additional period of 2–4 weeks is prescribed, when you can discuss expectations and adjust approaches if something went wrong at the beginning.

6. Estimated launch date

It is worth checking with the candidate when he can start working if he receives and accepts the offer. Notice period* may vary. Usually, it takes from 2 weeks to 3 months but the standard is below 2 months.

*Notice period refers to the period of “working off”, the minimum time that a candidate needs to work at the current place before leaving the company.

7. Deadline for deciding on the offer

The optimal time is a week since 1–2 days will not be enough to make a decision. It would be a mistake not to indicate the deadline, as the candidate may delay the answer, have time to go through another 10–20 interviews, and get other offers that may be more attractive than yours.

Even if the candidate has signed a job offer for remote work, a hybrid schedule, or cool conditions, we advise you not to lose contact with the future employee. If possible, send materials about the company, introduce the team, and send a welcome box in advance.

Creating an offer is one of the key stages of processing in the IT field. In my practice, some companies did not make an offer but sent a contract immediately (after successfully passing all the stages) to the candidate. In most cases, an IT specialist had a lot of questions, because it is important to first familiarize with all the conditions that are offered, and also so that the candidate could analyze, re-read the offer if necessary, and compare it with offers from other IT companies. Anna Paraskeeva
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Craft a job offer email that your candidate will love: extra tips

If your candidate is a professional, dozens of typical job offer letters can be made to him a week. And your task as an employer is to attract the attention of an IT specialist and “sell” the vacancy. We have put together some life hacks and examples to help you with this. 

1. Storytelling instead of the official tone of voice

Storytelling is a great tool. Its main task is to convey the necessary information through a story and interest the candidate.

However, keeping the main message and staying within the standard job offer format behind a beautiful and fascinating story is important. Your goal is to make it interesting to submit a job offer and tell all the important information at the same time. Therefore, it is desirable to combine storytelling with critical data, to adhere to clear and transparent wording about the working conditions.

Job offer example #1:

Tell a story about the team needing X and how they got there. Craft out a job offer then. There is a sample creative job offer for a web designer below.

Hello, [candidate’s name]!

This fight was difficult and long, but you’ve managed to get through it! 

Previously, we, a team of copywriters and marketers, did a good job with Figma. Today, among our clients are Netflix and Disney. We have grown up, we want a fresh look, new solutions, and a professional approach. We need the work of an expert! And we are sure that you can help with this.

We are pleased to invite you to the web designer position in the company [company’s name]. We offer such terms of cooperation:

  • work in the office at [city, street, building number, office number] from Mon to Fri. We have a flexible schedule: start work when you want. It is only important to work 8 hours per day and participate in team meetings;
  • probationary period lasting X months;
  • the salary level for the trial period will be $X (gross);
  • salary is paid __ times a month: in the period from __ to __, an advance payment is accrued, and from __ to __ — the main part of the salary;
  • [list of bonuses].

To say your “yes”, sign this document with an electronic signature before __. 

We expect you at the office DD.MM.YY. If you have other suggestions for the date and time — let’s discuss them together.

If you have any questions, we will be happy to answer them.


[Sender’s name]

Job offer example #2:

First, a story about the team, then a smooth transition to the problem: the lack of a person in the form of candidate X. Then, the proposal itself.

They say finding a soul mate is not easy. But it seems to us we at the company [name] have found it, and all we need is your consent.

Before you make a decision, you should know something… Our team already has a PO [name] who does backlog and estimates for the product with their eyes closed. There is also a development team of five people. They bring the product to life and embody the best client’s ideas.

Now our team lacks someone who could help ensure that the product is perfect to the smallest detail and finds bugs in the system where other specialists from the team would have missed them. In this role, we see you most of all.

We work on such conditions:

[main offer: its conditions, benefits, contacts of an HR specialist]

We hope you have already fallen in love with the team and will answer us with a signed offer before DD.MM.YY. 

2. A presentation about the company and corporate culture

Keep in mind the main thing: this is a presentation for the applicant. Adding dozens of indicators and analytics to it is not the best solution. Use only the most important data and arrange it in the form of a laconic infographic.

It is better to send the presentation as a separate file (for example, a pdf file) or as a landing/career page on the website. You can use this information:

  • office photo;
  • photo of the candidate’s workplace (you can make it cute — with a sign “Your name cup is already waiting for you”, or “We are looking forward to seeing you here”);
  • a funny story about colleagues;
  • funny working moments in the form of short videos;
  • a story about the mission and values of IT companies;
  • information about what the team does outside of work (for example, goes to orphanages, helps animal shelters, etc).

3. Video with the text message

The combination of formats may be different, but they must complement each other. The information there shouldn’t be duplicated. For example:

  • A text email is intended to describe official information (a more restrained job offer), while a video is intended to address a team or CEO.
  • The video is a cut of funny moments from the company’s life — corporate parties, extra-work meetings, birthday celebrations, and backstage events.

4. Corporate design and identity

Beautiful design + selling question = new employee. And it doesn’t matter if an employee goes to the position of a developer or a creative one — everyone likes bright pictures with information rather than just text.

You can make an infographic like “our achievements over the past year.” Add some funny achievements: “Alex, our office manager, organized fruit days on Wednesdays. And Max became No. 1 in terms of the amount of coffee drunk per month”.

In the end, ask an engaging question, such as:

  • We wonder what achievement will be next to your name.
  • We wonder what superpower you will manifest while working in our team.

Storytelling can make an offer unusual and distinguish it from others. But you need to be very careful with this, taking into account the domain and the projects in your company, how communication is built in your teams, and so on. The offer should fit your culture, not contradict it.

You can also add a few basic points that you hold in the values of the company, this can also win over the candidate and add friendliness.

But be very careful with gifs. Not everyone can appreciate them in an offer because gifs are associated with humor, and we are talking about a “serious” job offer. This may go against the core message of your employer brand if you are a large fintech or a bank, have previously checked with the security department, etc. Anna Paraskeeva

Last but not least: use a personalized approach. Placing a candidate’s first name and last name in an email title alone increases email open rates by up to 42%, according to a MarketingSherpa study. It will not be superfluous to make sure before sending the offer that the proposal reflects the preliminary agreements, as well as answer all the clarifying questions of the candidate.

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