What does intrusive behavior mean
Poaching employees: dos and don'ts in competition!
- Poaching employees - what exactly does that mean?
- Competition law limits: There is a risk of damages here!
- What does anti-competitive mean?
The shortage of skilled workers means that more and more companies are poaching employees from competing companies. Therefore, as an employer, you must of course expect a competitor to try to attract one of your talented employees. But is it even allowed to poach talent from competitors? When do you face criminal consequences? And how can the poaching of employees succeed in a fair way? In the following you will find important information, advantages and disadvantages as well as dos and don'ts in the competition for employees!
Poaching employees - what exactly does that mean?
The poaching of employees means nothing more than "stealing" employees from the competition and hiring them in your own company. In industries that are characterized by a severe shortage of skilled workers, as well as in large global companies, this is often done offensively and aggressively. Therefore, poaching particularly talented employees in competition can already be described as a recruiting strategy.
But is it even permissible to poach employees and when is the method considered anti-competitive?
Competition law limits: There is a risk of damages here!
The good or bad news is: In principle, poaching of employees is permitted. However, under consideration of certain circumstances or the use of unfair means, the strategy may be anti-competitive and therefore, in the worst case, have criminal consequences.
What does anti-competitive mean?
Anti-competitive behavior is the behavior of a competing company which, for the market participant concerned, has a negative influence on the performance competition and on a customer's purchase decision through deception or harassment. All actions that disregard the law against unfair competition (UWG) or the law against restraints of competition (GWB) are therefore unlawful.
Anticompetitive acts that can result in a claim for damages for the affected market participant include, for example:
- Deliberately poaching employees with the aim of harming the performance of the market participant or collecting secret data.
- Using negative or misleading statements to induce competitor employees to terminate their employment.
- Encourage employees of a competing company to breach a contract or to terminate, for example by offering to take over the possible financial consequences of spontaneous termination of the contract.
Poaching employees: advantages and disadvantages!
Every company is looking for the most talented employees possible. However, if conventional acquisition does not bring the desired success, it can be helpful to take a look at competitors. If one ignores any unfair means of poaching employees from the competition, there are general advantages and disadvantages. Here you will find the most important advantages and disadvantages so that you can get an idea of the recruiting strategy for yourself.
The benefits of poaching employees
1st advantage: win-win situation
Whenever a company decides to poach an employee from a market participant, it is advantageous if both sides benefit from it. In this case, poaching is more likely to be seen as the transfer of knowledge and skills from a talented employee to a growing and successful company. If the qualified employee has better working conditions, such as a higher salary, in their new job, then poaching is likely to mean a real win-win situation.
2nd advantage: increased productivity
Nowadays, companies have to deal with stiff competition, because competition is everywhere in the market. In all companies that are less productive compared to their competitors, it is particularly helpful to poach talented employees in the market. The new talents may increase sales and general profitability.
3rd advantage: redistribution of resources
Poaching employees means, on the one hand, facing the competition and maximizing the profit of your own company. Especially when less successful companies poach employees from particularly profitable companies, this means a healthy redistribution of workforce, and both participants can continue to survive in the market.
4th advantage: increased sales and earnings
The competition between companies is fierce and the desire to be market leader grows with the competition. It can be tough to assert yourself against other market participants in the battle for customers and the sale of products or services, especially when there is a lack of qualified employees.
The shortage of skilled workers makes the search for talent more difficult, so poaching employees is essential in some industries in order to ensure the success of your own company. Thus, under fair conditions, the strategy can lead to increased sales figures and higher turnover.
The disadvantages of poaching employees:
1. Disadvantage: ethical values
Quite apart from the fact that poaching employees from competitors is illegal under certain conditions, ethical values must also be observed. It only becomes dangerous when the former employer sues the employee and, in the worst case, the employee has to justify himself in court for switching to the competitor.
2. Disadvantage: loss of image
If you are considering poaching an employee from the competing company, you should reconsider this decision. Even as an employee, bad consequences can arise if the former employer feels ignored. For example, the employer can enforce legislation that prohibits the employee from starting with the new employer within a certain period of time. Also, finding new jobs in the future can be more difficult if the ex-employer makes the employee's name bad with the competition.
3. Disadvantage: Compensation for damages
As already mentioned, in the worst case, there may be an anti-competitive situation that results in the payment of damages. This can happen when an employee steals confidential information or customers. As soon as it is discovered, the employee may even lose his new job and ultimately be unemployed, also have to answer in court and face heavy fines.
Poaching employees: dos and don'ts in competition!
By fair means, the poaching strategy can be a real career push for both you and your poached employee. If you decide to poach an employee from the competition, you should observe a few dos and don'ts in order to act ethically and avoid possible negative consequences.
1. DO: Professional approach
The core idea of poaching employees is to secure new workers for your own company who enrich it with their skills. You have to convince the potential new employee of yourself and your company. You should approach this as fairly and honestly as possible by sending the right message and formulating good job descriptions.
Under no circumstances should you force or persuade the potential new employee to work for your company. Try to convince him with examples from other employees in similar positions. Also show him any long-term career opportunities.
The right approach is crucial here, because false promises or strategies of persuasion usually have negative consequences. The future employee should be firmly convinced that he is in better hands in your company.
2. DO: Friendly demeanor
In addition to the professional approach, a friendly and honest demeanor is also necessary. Remember that the new hire has already worked at a high level and was probably happy at their job. He may also feel bad about changing jobs, so you should give him extra warm welcome.
For example, if you see a job profile on LinkedIn or XING that you like, then you should kindly inform the candidate that you would be very happy to get to know each other personally. In the course of this, you can talk about a possible employment in your company and possible positions.
A friendly and honest manner is very important if you want to poach an employee - give the impression of an open, nice company in which you can express your opinion freely and informally.
3. DON'T: Force decisions
As already mentioned, it is absolutely inadvisable to persuade or possibly force a competitor's employee to join your company. Often aggressive and offensive strategies can be noticed in the labor market, which ultimately do not bring the desired success with them.
You should realize that it is a matter of attracting a qualified and talented employee on a voluntary basis. If you are too dominant, you will struggle to achieve this goal.
4. DON'T: intrusive behavior
When searching for potential candidates, you may find yourself getting too obsessed with the hiring strategy. This means that if a potential new employee is not interested, then you should definitely accept this.
At the end of the day, it is up to the employee to decide whether they want to move to your company or stay in their old job. Do not be intrusive under any circumstances, but respect the decision-making power of the candidate and start looking again.
How you can protect your employees from the competition!
Rather than focusing on ways to protect employees from being poached by the competition, it is better to develop strategies for keeping your employees loyal to you and your company. We have put together some helpful tips on how you can successfully strengthen employee loyalty:
- salary: Offer your employee a competitive salary that makes it difficult for them to quit the job. He also feels valued and probably works even more productively and happily.
- Career: Give your employees the opportunity to climb the corporate ladder and grow professionally, otherwise they may look to the competition for opportunities for advancement.
- communication: Make your employee feel that their voice counts and that they can openly communicate any concerns or wishes. Also show yourself as an approachable and loyal superior.
- motivation: Let your employees understand that they are essential for your company and that their work is indispensable. Praise and reward him every now and then - this increases the work motivation considerably.
- Work-life balance: You should create a pleasant working atmosphere for yourself and your team, offer enough freedom and promote a balanced relationship between private and professional life.
Poaching of employees is often done in an aggressive and offensive manner, but under certain conditions it is perfectly permissible and legal. With our advantages and disadvantages you could get an idea of the recruiting strategy for yourself. In addition, with a view to the do’s and don'ts we have drawn up in competition, you can now attract qualified talents from other market participants for your company under fair conditions.
Lillia Seifert studied English and sociology and is currently studying for a master's degree in interdisciplinary media studies at Bielefeld University. She has already published her own texts and worked as a social media manager. With her knowledge of the various areas, she is particularly good at working with topics from multiple perspectives. At karrieretipps.de she can ideally use her skills in the creative handling of informative texts.Recent articles
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