Delivering the search again when the appointed candidate doesn’t start

The Challenge

In this instance, we had appointed the outstanding candidate from our shortlist for a role as Director of Purchasing. His references checked out and he resigned from his post (after 15 years with the same firm) and a start date was agreed. Everyone was happy.

Two months later, with flights booked for appointments with key suppliers and his new company car due to be delivered the next day, he emailed the client saying that his circumstances had changed and he wouldn’t be taking up the new job.

The Result

Our client had to send back the car and cancel the flights and the meetings. We had to conduct the full search again, starting from scratch, to build a new shortlist both in the UK and the Czech Republic. The only silver lining was that we had all of the original candidates to benchmark our new candidates against.

We did the work again, identifying a new group of potential candidates. We approached 25 new candidates and built a brand new shortlist – two candidates in the Czech Republic and three in the UK. The new Czech candidates in particular were stronger than their predecessors, but once again another outstanding candidate emerged from the pack. Not only was she equal to the original preferred candidate in terms of experience and knowledge, she had stronger people skills and a better cultural fit with the team.

This time around she accepted the same job offer, resigned successfully, collected her car and turned up for work on the first day. The entire second search was conducted without charge but with great satisfaction.

We can’t guarantee that every candidate will accept every position that they are offered, or that they will commence in the role even if they accept the position, but in this instance, the delay and upheaval were soon forgotten when an even stronger candidate was ultimately appointed into the post.