Accepting a New Job Offer: The Basics
Successfully completing your interview process and accepting a job offer certainly is no easy task—and concerns regarding family, relationships and more can often make it even harder. However, when it comes to the efforts that can follow after the acceptance of an offer (especially when unprepared), it goes without saying that you won’t be all the way out of the woods just yet.
So, what can you do to fully prepare for the weeks to follow and more importantly, what will be the more important questions to ask before proceeding in order to ensure that you know exactly what factors to plan for? Below, we’ve compiled a definitive guide, made up of all of the key, important questions to ask, in order to cover an all-encompassing range of integral bases when preparing to accept a job offer. Read ahead, and make it a point to plan on asking any that are applicable before things move forward.
Confirm your required time frame for response.
Upon receiving a job offer, there will most likely be a time frame in which you’re allotted to respond with a definitive yes or no—often simply a basic formality in many cases, but for those with experienced personal careers, this can be a factor with significant influence. Ideally, you’ll want at least a few days upon being made an offer in order to fully review and assess the complete package of your offer. Longer periods of response time also mean you’ll have a greater window of time to reach out to your employer to be and clarify any significant questions or concerns you may have.
Review your benefits thoroughly.
Regardless of your field of employment, any full time employment contract will come with its share of benefits and options. These aren’t facts that you want to wait to find out after you’re employed. Knowing the ins and outs of your benefits offered will mean that you can plan for your financial future in the long term and not just in the next few months.
Review the time frame of your benefits.
Similarly, it’s important to note any mandatory waiting periods (generally 90 or so days) before certain benefits of your position kick in. Depending on personal needs, this can be something worth planning around in advance. Make it your goal to be aware of the specifics of your employment before your start date either way.
Ensure that a detailed written offer letter is provided.
It’s important to not put the cart before the horse when it comes to accepting any verbal agreements regarding your employment. Making an informed decision regarding the future of your career requires that you have the ability to carefully review any and all aspects of your future employment. So, before agreeing to anything, it’s important to have taken the time to privately go over everything in writing. It can also make it easier for you to draft up an official acceptance letter in response.
Salary negotiations are time sensitive.
It’s important to remember that the salary you agree to is almost always the salary that you can expect in the long term. Serious salary renegotiations generally don’t happen outside of major promotions and the like, which can take quite a bit of time and are uncommon. If the salary you’ve been offered isn’t quite up to par for your financial needs, it’s pertinent that you launch these discussions now rather than assuming it can happen later.
Obtain records of any negotiations in writing.
While it’s a minor step to keep in mind, you still will need to make sure that you obtain the most up to date written offer letter before signing on, in the event that post-offer negotiations have given rise to any changes in your salary or benefits. You don’t want to sign an offer letter that doesn’t include your most up to date offer, to put it simply.
Find out exactly when you start.
Having a concrete start date is a crucial factor in being able to accurately plan your next few weeks, especially for those relocating to a new city for their new job. Be sure to find out exactly when you will start in the event that you do accept their offer, so that you’ll know what to expect.
Ask what the average work day is like.
This tip goes beyond simply finding out your work schedule (though you should definitely know that too). Asking your potential employer what you can expect from an average day at work means that you’ll not only have a good idea of what’s expected of you, but will be more confident in knowing that you’ll be making the right decision by accepting their offer.
Have concrete plans for your relocation.
If you’ll be needing to move at all in order to start your new job, you’ll need to ensure that all of the aspects of your relocation are capable of being coordinated before agreeing. Inquiring into whether or not your employer offers any form of relocation assistance is extremely important before getting into the further phases of your employment.
Plan for your long term future, not your immediate.
It only makes sense to devote your time and effort to a company where the growth of your professional skills will be challenged and fostered. Not having strong reassurance from your employers that opportunities for growth will present themselves to you down the line is a valid reason to reconsider.
Find out everything that will be expected of you.
A wide range of companies and firms can often rate employee performance based on metrics, quotas, and general long term goals. It’s important to have an idea of what the majority of these are before getting started. Signing on for a position that you assume will be open-ended (only to find out that you have monthly quotas) is never a good feeling.
Try to get a feel for company culture and history.
Fitting into certain company cultures better than others will generally have an impact on your success in a workplace. For better or for worse, certain people simply work better in different environments. You should be confident that your new place of employment successfully falls in line with what you hope for out of work environment.