Smart Job Hunting: How to Recognise Red Flags in the Hiring Process

| 5 minutes

When you’re looking for a new job, it’s easy to put a lot of pressure on yourself to make a great impression with potential employers. 

But when it’s done well, the recruitment process can and should be a two-way street. 

Changing jobs is a big upheaval, and it’s important to make the right move. Almost a third of employees have quit a job within the first six months at some point in their career. 

But how can you tell whether you’re stepping up to your dream role or into a nightmare before you hand in your notice and sign on the dotted line?

Here are eight red flags to watch out for. 

  1. A Chaotic recruitment process 

Last-minute interview requests, rescheduling, or a hiring process that seems either rushed or very slow are all potential red flags. 

An interview process takes time and effort, and you want to see that reflected back in a structured, proportionate recruitment process.

Put this to the test by asking for details of the recruitment process and timings. Employers that are focused on finding great people will invest time in planning out the process upfront. 

  1. A lack of communication 

The way a company communicates before you’re part of the team gives a good idea what they’ll be like to work for. 

A shocking 75% of job hunters have been ghosted by a potential employer or their agency – even after an interview. 

Clear, friendly, and timely communication, as well as a dedicated point of contact throughout the process is a good sign. 

  1. A vague job description

Almost three-quarters of hiring managers say they provide clear job descriptions, but only 36% of candidates agree. Many employers don’t provide a job description at all. 

Hiring Managers or recruiters should be able to really clearly explain the role and its responsibilities, going beyond the published job description to paint a picture of what the role and company are like. 

In startups, a CEO or founder is often the one defining these roles and in many instances, there may be an element of the unknown for a new strategic hire or new team. As recruiters, our background can help to solidify what’s required and that finer detail. 

Delving into role nuances, immediate priorities, and cultural fit is essential for both hiring managers / recruiters and candidates. This clarity facilitates informed decisions, fosters trust, and aligns expectations for a successful partnership.

This allows both sides to figure out if you’re a good fit, avoiding wasting valuable time if not.

  1. No interest in your motivations 

The recruitment process is about much more than whether someone can do the job. It’s about finding a great fit, and 57% of candidates see a lack of shared values as a deal breaker. 

If a potential employer isn’t asking about why you want a new job and what you’re looking for from the move, that’s a red flag. 

Understanding a candidate’s motivations provides insight into their alignment with the company’s mission and culture. Ignoring this aspect can lead to mismatches down the line.

Effective recruitment involves mutual understanding and alignment of the opportunity to grow. Employers should demonstrate genuine interest in candidates’ career aspirations, ensuring a symbiotic relationship where both parties can thrive. 

  1. Reluctance to talk about pay and benefits

Only around 12% of job listings in the US include the salary, so it’s important that potential employers are happy to have an open, transparent conversation about remuneration once you’re in the recruitment process. 

This is especially true for sales roles, where different types of bonus structure can significantly impact the final take-home. 

  1. Not being open to questions 

Not making time for or half-hearted answers to candidate questions is a red flag. Getting different answers from different people can also be a warning sign. 

If a company makes time to listen to you and answer your questions as a candidate, it’s a good sign they’ll do the same with their employees. 

  1. An unprepared interviewer

Interviews are a time-consuming part of the recruitment process with candidates investing an average of 5-10 hours in prep time alone. 

There’s nothing worse than an interviewer that’s still reading your CV as you answer their first question or someone who doesn’t seem to know what questions they want to ask. 

If an interviewer hasn’t had time to read your CV and think about what they want to ask you specifically, it’s a sign that they might be interviewing too many candidates focusing on quantity rather than quality or simply not prioritising the recruitment process.

  1. Too many interviews

Whether it’s lots of people on the panel or just many, many rounds of interviews, an inflated recruitment process is a red flag. 

For senior roles, there’s typically three interview rounds, occasionally four if it’s a close call between two similar candidates. 

Wanting sign-off from lots of stakeholders could indicate a lack of autonomy within the company or indecision around the role and what they’re looking for. 

Look for an employer that’s respectful of your time with a clear idea of what makes a great candidate for their business. 

Red flags or not, sometimes it all comes down to something you can’t quite put your finger on. Are you excited by the role? Did you get that energy back from the employer? Is there chemistry?

At Finiti, we prioritise not just filling roles but ensuring the right fit for both candidates and clients. We take the time to advise clients on the recruitment process while deeply understanding a candidate’s real motivations and drivers for seeking a new role, ensuring these align with the opportunities presented.

As the only specialist Fintech sales recruiters, we often place candidates multiple times throughout their careers, and there’s a real sense of matchmaking behind successful recruitment. Our expertise lies not just in matching skills but in understanding the dynamics of the Fintech industry and the unique attributes that lead to long-term success.

Whether you’re on the hunt for your perfect match now or want to be part of our talent network for future opportunities, get in touch

Strategies for Maximising Job Packages: Navigating Salary Constraints

| 5 minutes

You’ve done it. You’ve found that next big hire for your Sales Team. They’re perfect for the role. Job done, right? 

Finding the right person isn’t the end of the recruitment process. Before you start planning their induction and forwarding meeting invites, there’s still the delicate process of finalising the job package. 

But what happens when you don’t have any wiggle room on salary? 

Here’s our five top tips for taking a more holistic approach to job packages that can make all the difference between losing top talent and making sure they sign on the dotted line. 

  1. Unlocking hidden benefits 

When there’s a lot to communicate in a job spec, benefits are often the first thing to get condensed or cut. 

Two-thirds say benefits are as important if not more important than salary, with a similar percentage saying benefits will be a key priority when applying for their next role.  

Whether it’s tangible benefits, like healthcare or an on-site gym, or culture-based benefits, like team events and remote working, make sure you communicate the full breadth of benefits the job package includes. 

  1. Tailoring bonus structures

There might not be any stretch when it comes to base salary, but there are many different bonus structures out there that can help attract and retain top sales talent. 

Think about which activities drive sales for your business and get creative with a tiered bonus structure. You could also add in activity-based bonuses for the initial few months to make sure the candidate’s take-home gets a boost right from the start. 

What’s great about generous bonus structures is that when they win, so do you. 

  1. Negotiating equity and stock options 

An alternative to a bigger salary in the short term is to offer new starters a stake in the company. 

The exact amount you’re able to offer depends on a number of factors, with the average equity share in startups hovering around 1%

Offering equity or stocks shows that you’re committed to both them as a team member and to the company’s growth in the long-term, even if the short term salary might not be what they had in mind. 

  1. Customising benefit packages

There’s much more to a job package than just the salary; the right benefits can be the deciding factor between two similar offers, even when the other salary is higher. 

Over four in ten employees don’t think their current company’s benefit package meets their needs, and half even say they’d accept a pay reduction for a more tailored benefits package. 

To use this strategy effectively, talk to the candidate to find out what they really value. If they have young kids at home, flexible working might be the benefit that wins them over, or if their family is overseas the ability to work from a different timezone for a month a year might suit them best. 

Take the time to understand the things beyond salary that matter to a candidate and create a benefits package that’s perfectly tailored to what works for them. This shows that you’re being as flexible as possible in the areas where you do have stretch. 

  1. Emphasising career growth opportunities

If you’re talking salaries with a candidate, chances are they like you as much as you like them. They’re picturing themselves as part of the team – they’re invested. 

Capitalise on that interest and a great mutual fit by painting a picture of what their long-term career with you could look like. 

Progression could mean a promotion, but it can include other learning perks too. A huge 86% say that they’d change jobs if another company offered more opportunities for development. 

Where possible, share examples of others who’ve joined your business at the same level and have progressed, as well as how you support learning and development throughout your business.  

Communicating your offer

Articulating the full range of what you offer as an employer is crucial to navigating that tricky final stage of the recruitment process. 

Taking a clear, proactive approach to understanding a candidate’s expectations at the start of a process can also avoid losing time or, even worse, a successful candidate at the final hurdle. 

We’ve been curating our network of top Fintech sales talent for twenty years, often placing top talent multiple times throughout their career. 

To learn more about how we ensure a smooth, successful recruitment process by getting to know candidates and their expectations, get in touch with the team at Finiti for a friendly chat.