Managing the Job Offer
Congratulations, You Have Won the Job!
Take your time and consider
the job offer in its totally
A job offer can be tendered a number of ways. An employment offer presented by phone is generally followed by a formal letter or contract sent via email or post. If you verbally accept a phone offer, you are not bound until you sign and mail the formal offer letter or contract of employment.
And keep in mind, most verbal job offers are provisional, pending satisfactory references and background checks.
Refrain from signing a job offer letter until you are satisfied with the outcome of salary negotiations, the benefits package, conditions of employment, etc. Take your time. Consider the job offer in its totality, and if it falls short, negotiate further if you can. Once you decide to accept the job, mail, or scan and email, a signed copy of the offer letter or contract within two days, keeping a copy for yourself.
A job offer made during an interview does not have to be accepted or declined on the spot. Request a couple of days to consider it, and tell them when to expect your answer. However, if you are sure the job offer is right for you, and the terms are satisfactory, feel free to accept it there and then.
Negotiating Job Offers
Once you receive the job offer, salary negotiations can begin, and terms of employment can be determined.
If a recruitment consultant is representing you, your total compensation package will be negotiated on your behalf. It is the consultant's responsibility to negotiate the job offer favourably, getting you best possible package whilst satisfying the company's needs.
If you are negotiating directly with the organisation, have a clear and realistic idea of what you want regarding compensation and benefits. It is advisable to research salary ranges for roles similar to yours, so you know what is realistic and what not to accept. If you feel you are worth a higher salary, and the company has a range it must stay within, use benefits, such as additional holiday, further education, bonus opportunity and so on, to enhance the job offer.
Tips for Discussing Job Offers
- Allow the company to raise the topic of salary.
- If asked to name the salary you want, defer this discussion until the job is fully defined. If pressed to respond, provide a range. For example, “Without yet knowing what the job fully entails, I'm looking for something between $X and $Y per year.”
- You may wish to consider a lower salary than you currently earn if the job will advance your career in an attractive timeframe.
- Avoid discussing your personal needs.
- You are entitled to ask for a couple of days to consider the job offer.
Multiple Job Offers
If you are lucky enough to receive more than one job offer, compare the answers to these questions:
- What are the reasons to join the company?
- Are my values in line with those of the organisation?
- What opportunities for promotion and career development exist?
- What are my responsibilities for the first year?
- Will I do well in the role?
- What does the total compensation look like, including salary, benefits, etc?