Well done! All your hard work job hunting has paid off and you now have an offer, but are you going to accept straight away? The excitement of being successful in obtaining a new role can often lead people to rush into saying yes. However, just because an employer thinks you’re right for the job doesn’t always mean that the job is right for you.
Different people have different needs and now is your final opportunity to think about what it is that you want and need from your next role. You will spend a large portion of your week at work, so before you sign on the dotted line, you need to make sure that any new job you take is going to fulfil your needs. You have a small window to think over the opportunity again and to make the right decision about whether to accept or not.
Here are a few points to consider when reviewing your job offer before you make that all-important decision:
When you applied, you will have read about the role, but the whole recruitment process should have given you a much better idea about what the opportunity and the company are really like. You should make sure to ask any questions you may have about the role during the interview stages. However, if you haven’t been given the opportunity, now is your last chance to get any important questions answered.
You need to ask yourself some key questions: Will this job satisfy me? Will it give me enough responsibility/challenge me? Is it something I will enjoy?
The Work Environment
Your physical surroundings at work can have a big effect on your job satisfaction and everyone’s preferences are different. There’s not much point in accepting a job in a huge, loud office when you’re looking to work in a smaller, more subdued environment.
Where is the office or branch located? If you’re the type of person who wants that time at lunch to go out, stretch your legs and grab some food, you need to make sure there are amenities nearby.
What about the people? Hopefully, during your interview(s), you will have had the opportunity to meet some of your potential colleagues – Are these people that you will be able to work alongside day in day out?
The Salary and Benefits
Everyone has their own salary expectations, but you should always be realistic with the figure you’re hoping for and sometimes you may have to be willing to compromise. This, however, by no means suggests that if a job offer is well below what you want, and the market average, that you shouldn’t discuss and negotiate the salary.
If a significant pay drop would have a noticeable effect on your lifestyle, then saying yes, no matter how much you may want a new job, may not be the best option. That being said, don’t be blinded by a shiny, generous salary if none of your other job needs are met.
If this is something you’re interested in, consider what else the company offers you: training, professional development, discounts, pension packages, on-site facilities (such as a cafeteria or a gym), child care support – these are all benefits that could make your life much easier, and even, in a way, supplement your salary.
It’s time to get a little bit selfish – what do YOU need? If you have commitments outside of work that you simply can’t change, then you need to make sure that the hours, flexibility and the demands of the job will fit in with those commitments.
Your journey to work is also a big factor. Some people are quite happy to commit to a long daily commute, whereas this would drive others mad. If you have a car, is there free parking available within the vicinity? If you rely on public transport, are there regular, reliable and convenient links between home and work? These aspects should be considered, and if you will need to make a change or compromise, you should be certain that this is something you are prepared to commit to for an extended period of time.
Career progression is another important aspect to think about. If you’re keen to develop and progress in the business then make sure that you can see a clear progression path before you commit.
Still unsure? Do your research: why is the position open? Meet the people. Look into the company’s history, reputation and financial situation, get your job description and offer in writing so that you know the details. Also, don’t discount any counter offers from other employers, take a bit of time to weigh up all of your options.
It’s unlikely that any job offer is going to be completely perfect, so don’t be disheartened if every box isn’t ticked by a new role, there are always likely to be some things you will have to make allowances for. Only you can decide what you want and what is important. Different things will contribute to your happiness, or unhappiness, at work – so know what you want and ensure the opportunity is a good match before you accept.