What Is an Offer Acceptance Rate (OAR)?

The offer acceptance rate (OAR) is the percentage of accepted offers versus the number of offers the organization sends out.

Why Is Measuring the Offer Acceptance Rate (OAR) Important?

Understanding the OAR is an essential step in understanding the effectiveness of your organization’s recruiting process.

  • Measuring the quality of the interview process. Often when an offer is turned down, there was an addressed issue in the candidate’s interview process. Measuring the OAR can help your team learn to pick up on social cues and dig deeper to check with a candidate that a question was resolved. If you find that you have a high rate of offers being declined, you will want to dig into all aspects of your process including the interview process.
  • Measuring the effectiveness of the verbal offer. Did the explanation of the role at the verbal offer answer the candidate’s questions and help them see they would be set up for success? An initial verbal offer can either inflate or deflate a candidate’s excitement. If the hiring employee does not seem excited to be extending the offer, the candidate receiving the offer may not want to accept.
  • Measuring the candidate experience. A high percentage of offers being declined can be a sign that the candidate experience leaves something to be desired. You will want to dive in on the questions being asked, the timeliness of communication and the expectations being set throughout the process.

How Do I Measure the Offer Acceptance Rate?

The OAR is a straightforward calculation. You take the number of offers accepted and divide it by the number of offers given. You can track this in a way that works best for your organization’s needs, so make these calculations based on your organization’s normal reporting cadence.

If your organization normally reports metrics monthly, quarterly or semi-annually, you can prepare this number as one of the analytics to show the effectiveness of your recruiting process and your candidate experience.

It can be helpful to present one number that presents the overall measurement and another set of numbers to break it down between different departments to give a more complete picture.

Methods for Increasing Your Offer Acceptance Rate (OAR)

The main way to increase your OAR is to ensure that your candidates have a great candidate experience along the way. This includes researching competitive salary ranges, giving clear explanations of the recruiting process and what to expect, keeping your recruiting process as simple as possible, posting the job with the salary in the job post, and clearly defining the role and expectations.

Polish Up Your Job Descriptions

People will not accept offers when they thought the job was one thing and it ended up being something completely different. This can range from a change in responsibilities to a change of job title, or a misalignment of salary expectations. Being clear about all of these items is important from the first job posting to the sourcing emails and any other initial communications with prospective candidates.

Update Your Recruiting Process

To ensure clear communication between the candidate and the organization’s expectations, make sure you are asking the correct screening and discovery questions. Ensure that the salary posted in the job description meets the requirements the candidate is seeking. Look for their hopes with the position. See what their longer term career goals might be and help the candidate to see how the organization can help them meet those goals. If your recruiting process is not concise and clearly explained throughout the process, the candidate may not be interested when the offer is presented.