Don’t assume that the candidate will have talked to a partner / family members about your role.
You need to find the courage to ask them if they have had conversations about people who would also be affected by them moving jobs (or moving home!). And if not, why not?
Yes, it’s a personal question — but if you do it tactfully, it will deepen your relationship with the candidate.
Particularly if there is a relocation involved, this question needs to be asked as early as possible into the process. Forget to ask and you may find the offer gets dropped for an alternative and you’re left having wasted a lot of time with somebody who was never serious in the first place about your opportunity.
Consider the conversation a prospective hire has to have with their spouse about moving to another country.
No doubt he/she may be worrying about their career prospects in the new host country as a trailing spouse. As a recruiter, regarding job prospects in the new City — this is usually something you can give some high-level advice about. If you are not sure, ask another colleague, or maybe a refer the spouse to a reputable recruitment agency partner operating in that area or industry.
Remember, at this point you are not selling to the candidate, you need to be honest with them about employment prospects for the partner/spouse affected by a move.
3 reasons asking this question really matters
You will deliver a better candidate experience by asking about their family perspective on a job move early on, if you do it tactfully.
If you ‘go the extra mile’ and try to provide advice or even job leads to a partner / spouse impacted by a move, this can have very positive impact and influence the decision as well as the engagement levels of the new hire on starting their new gig with you.
Avoid unwelcome news about a job offer being declined or even worse, rescinded by being prepared and getting the facts upfront.
Context is everything
In recruiting, we have a tendency to focus on the candidate, not the context, when we are persuading happily employed and contented souls to consider alternative career options, sometimes thousands of miles from where they call home. Paying more attention to their circumstances, not just their skills, will yield big dividends, better results, and fewer mishaps.