If you’re hoping to get your boss to promote you by dangling a competing job offer, take heed: A number of factors — some outside of your control — could impact your likelihood of achieving your goal.
When a staff member decides to leave a company for a different opportunity, some employers will counter with an offer to try to get them to stay. LiveCareer, a website for job-seekers, surveyed both workers and hiring managers to learn how common counteroffers really are and what makes a hiring manager decide to extend one.
While a majority of hiring managers — 68% — said they had made at least one counteroffer at some point in their careers, the survey found that certain considerations can increase or decrease the odds of such an offer.
Why employers counter
Hiring managers gave a number of reasons for extending a counteroffer. The largest percentage revolved around the employee’s contributions to the team:
57% said they countered to retain talent
49% said they countered to retain an employee’s job knowledge
42% said they countered because the employee contributes significantly
However, for others, the decision came down to time and money:
43% said they countered to save time hiring a replacement
32% said they extended a counteroffer to save the money that would be spent hiring a replacement
19% said they countered to prevent the stress of hiring a replacement
Among the less-common reasons hiring managers gave for extending a counteroffer:
[list- 12% said they wanted to keep the employee from going to a competitor 11% said it was because the employee’s work was time-sensitive
Smaller companies were more likely to extend a counteroffer than large ones. In fact, 80% of companies with 10-49 employees had issued counteroffers to employees at some point, compared to 75% of companies with 50-249 employees, and 54% of companies with 250 or more employees.
Remote workers see mixed results
According to 61% of hiring managers, whether an employee works remotely — a situation far more common this year as a result of the pandemic — can affect the likelihood that a counteroffer is made.
What that effect is, however, is a matter of debate: 32% of hiring managers surveyed said working remotely decreases your chances of receiving a counteroffer, while 30% said it increases your chances.
Among all hiring managers surveyed, 35% said they had issued a counteroffer to a remote worker.
Offer size may vary
When it comes to the amount of a proposed pay hike, the most common counteroffer was a 10% raise, as cited by 36% of respondents.
However, some employees value other perks such as vacation time, so not all of the counteroffers involve a higher salary. Other popular counteroffers cited in the survey — both monetary and benefit-based — included:
More vacation time (31%)
5% raise (29%)
Role transition (29%)
The ability to work from home more often (26%)
20% raise (19%)
As for the employees’ view, the survey found 86% or employee respondents said they had received a new job offer before, and 54% said it occurred when they weren’t looking for a job.
Of those employees, 1 in 4 seeking a counteroffer from their employer received one, even though 37% said they had no intention of accepting the new job offer in the first place. However, 28% of employees who had received another job offer said they thought it pointless to ask their employer to issue a counteroffer.
Methodology: LiveCareer surveyed 1,161 U.S. full-time workers between the ages of 18 and 76. Among the employees surveyed was a subset of 212 hiring managers. The survey was published Aug. 6, 2020.