It seems the practice of trying shift momentum in the candidate’s favor by imposing deadlines for the hiring company started long before I got involved in the business. A candidate will create fake counter offers and tell the recruiter they have an offer when they do not. Ultimately, I have rarely seen this work out well for the candidate and most of the time it backfires. Companies have a hiring process that they go through because it has proven successful for them in the past. Asking them to shorten (disrupt) this process makes them uneasy, there is no good reason to do this unless it is absolutely necessary. After the deadline has passed, it is amazing how often this other offer did not materialize and they are still interested in my client. Unfortunately the candidate with the faux offer has now lost tremendous credibility. What we recommend is transparency. If you really have a competing offer, or are expecting one, share everything you know about it with the recruiter. Then we can manage our client accordingly and if you are truly very talented it is likely we can get them to make a decision more quickly than they wanted to. However there is risk they will not adjust the timing of the deal, risk you have no reason to absorb if you are not forced to do so.