Integrity in the Software Engineering Job Market?

I feel like my grandfather when I say “in the olden days” but I’d like to talk about a situation and would welcome any feedback and input. I know, speaking as a recruiter,  that recruiters can get a bad rap, but the truth is that recruiters are no different than software engineers and software companies in the sense that there are some great recruiters and well.. we won’t talk about the others J
Here is the scenario. We are recruiting for Company A, a start-up software company in the e-commerce space looking for a Senior Software Engineer with Web 2.0, Java, MySQL HTML and Javascript. After a lengthy interview process, where the candidate and the company invested substantial time, our client, Company A hired Candidate A. Candidate A accepted the offer, signed the offer letter and agreed upon a start-date.  After that event of offer and acceptance, Company B called and recruited Candidate A, knowing that he had already accepted an offer with another company.  Candidate A then decided to reneg on his signed acceptance at Company A and is now going to Company B.
In the olden days, there was an honor system. If you accepted an offer, it was assumed that you did your due diligence on the company and you also could have turned down the offer.  It was your choice to accept. You made a commitment to that company by accepting and signing an offer letter and you went to that company, no matter what. If the opportunity wasn’t a good fit after you started working at that company, that was a different story.  Also, if a candidate was approached by another company and said they had accepted an offer, the other company would typically say congratulations! and say let’s keep in touch.  They would not pursue that candidate any further. It was hands-off.
Here are my questions: Assuming there are no extraordinary circumstances, is it OK for a candidate to reneg on a signed and accepted offer or not? Is it OK for a company to convince a candidate who has already accepted an offer to reneg and join their company instead? Is this a question of Integrity and Honor or not? Please let me know your thoughts and opinions on this topic.

, , , , , ,

Comments are closed.