Making the offer

Now, make a decision! Do not advise candidates that they have been unsuccessful until you have successfully negotiated with your preferred candidate. You may need to revisit the pool of applicants if you are unable to reach agreement with your preferred candidate.

Consider a second interview

If you are having trouble making a decision, give some thought to holding a second interview, or an informal meeting, to reassure yourself that you are making the right selection.

After deciding on the appropriate person, make an offer. Remember: do not make an offer of employment during the interview.

Use this Offer of Employment to draft one of your own.
You will need to include a copy of the Employment Contract and Position Description with the letter of offer.

Consider a phone call prior to a written offer

A written offer may be preceded by a phone call to ascertain whether the candidate is going to consider the position if it is offered. This can save time by not waiting for the post and the applicant to reply.

Make the right choice for your farm

Avoid employing ‘the best of a bad bunch’ – in other words, offering the job to someone who is not right because the others are worse. This often results in the process being repeated again soon at the cost of time, patience and profit. It is better not to appoint anyone and to fill the gap with casual staff until there are more suitable applicants. You may need to cast the net wider for suitable candidates. This can be difficult if the location is not ideal, if it is mid-season or if the technologies on the farm are outdated.

Workplace rights of prospective employees

Under the federal industrial laws, prospective employees have the same workplace rights as if they have been employed by the prospective employer.

This means, for example, that an employer cannot make employment conditional upon the prospective employee entering into an individual flexibility agreement because the employee must be able to genuinely agree to its terms.

However, employers can make employment conditional on an employee accepting a guarantee of annual earnings.

Employers must not take adverse action against prospective employees by refusing to employ them or discriminating against them when offering terms and conditions of employment.

For more information see General Protections.

For a number of reasons, successful candidates do not always accept an offer of employment. If this happens, it may be worthwhile asking them why they have not accepted the position. They may not tell you, and you need to be careful not to push the point, they are under no obligation to tell you.

Other candidates should now be notified that they have been unsuccessful.

Click here to help you start writing your own Letter to an Unsuccessful Candidate.

Hiring a herd manager for the first time

Brian and Marlene were employing a herd manager for the first time. It was a significant move for them, having only employed farm hands previously.

They arrived at a short list of applicants and asked each of them for names of referees. Factory field officers, bankers and local veterinarians were contacted for each applicant prior to the selection of the candidate for an interview. A number of phone calls were made, including follow-up calls to the applicant and referees.

By the time this process was completed, there was an obvious first choice candidate. This applicant was currently employed as a farm manager a considerable distance from the farm, so Brian and Marlene invited him and his family to stay with them over a mutually suitable weekend. He was given a chance to participate in the running of the farm for the two days, and met with the other staff. This aspect of the process was as much an opportunity for the applicant to check out the farm as it was for the farm owners to assess the applicant.

When the offer of employment was made, both parties were confident that they had a good chance of a successful match.

Ensure that the successful candidate signs the letter of offer and a written contract before commencing work. This is important. If a contract is signed after the person has started working, it can later be argued that the some of the terms of the contract are invalid or that other terms apply because an unwritten contract was already in place when the person started work. Any legal judgements could be made on the basis of that original contract.

Refer to the Employment and Reward module for further information on contracts and the conditions of employment.

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