Constructing an offer letter​

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Creating an offer letter

An offer letter is often separate to the contract of employment. Whilst your contractual terms are a fixed document, your offer letter needs to be customised to that particular candidate's offer.

The offer letter should summarise the main conditions of the offer. In particular, make sure that you include the following key points:

  • The candidate's full name, as written on their passport
  • The job title of the role being offered, making clear any internal names the role goes by
  • An employment start date (and end if it is a fixed term position)
  • If you have one, the length of the probation period and any conditions linked to this
  • A bespoke list of the next steps the candidate needs to take. For example, providing their right to work if they haven’t already done so
  • Any conditions that the offer are based on. For example, acceptable references or a background screening check
  • Details of how the candidate should accept or decline the offer. For example, by signing and returning a copy

Alongside the offer letter there are a number of documents you may want to consider sending:

  • A summary of benefits and how to access each one
  • A pension opt out form 
  • Details of the pension scheme​*
  • The contract of employment
  • A document explaining your onboarding and induction process
  • Information about your pre-employment checks

*It is important that you don't encourage candidates to opt out of the pension scheme

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Offer Letter Template

To get started with offer letters, please download out template below. You will need to check that it includes everything required for your organisation by looking at the key pieces of information held in your employment contracts.

Can a candidate change their mind once they have signed an agreement?

If a candidate accepts an offer but then changes their mind there is action an employer can take. For example, they could sue them for breach of contract or make them work for the agreed notice period.

However, this is very rare and the effort is better placed in finding an alternative candidate. There is little to no benefit to forcing a candidate to join your organisation if they do not wish to do so.

At this stage a candidate can still pull out of the recruitment process so consider what you would do in this situation

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