You submitted your resume, knocked out 2-3 rounds of hardcore interviews, waited a lifetime for a response, and finally, the offer letter comes rolling through… What next?
We know how electrifying your first job offer can make you feel… The cloud of excitement looms over and your insides gust with joy… Congratulations! BUT pause before moving further! Accepting a job isn’t exactly a walk in the park – it kind of is, but there are so many things to mull over before proceeding. If you’re new to this employer-employee situation, here are some last minute considerations to make before accepting a job offer.
#1 The Salary
Please please please make sure you’re not being low-balled. Have you done your research? If not, go now. Do a simple Google search of the salaries in your local area. What are people with the same job titles being paid? Do you fall in that range? Glassdoor and Indeed are excellent resources for salary information. Sometimes, the employer will give you the option of naming a salary… If you’re not confident, you can alway say something along the lines of, “Based on my research, it looks like salaries for this position fall between $XX and $XX, so I would expect something in that range”. If you’re experienced and you already know, a hard number will be fine. Don’t ever be afraid of rejection from naming a salary – the worst that happens is a counteroffer.
Bottom line: Do your research and maximize your worth.
#2 The Benefits
Many things fall into a compensation package. Things like paid vacation days, sick time off, retirement, health, and holidays ALL matter. If you’re being offered a lower salary, but amazing benefits (like 4 weeks of vacation and $1oo/month for health insurance), it might be worth it. On the other hand, if you’re offered a high salary, but minimal time off, you need to decide if you can live with that.
Bottom line: Salary doesn’t determine everything, but get this information upfront so you can make a sound decision.
#3 The Perks
Ask about flexibility – does your employer offer flex time or the ability to work from home? It’s becoming a very common (and compelling) offer. What about discounts? You’ll be surprised at the phone and insurance discounts companies will offer. You might even be given a car or paid gas mileage.
Bottom line: Perks aren’t always dealbreakers, but they’re good to know, especially flex time (we’re keen on this one)!
#4 The Commute
How early are you willing to wake up? Do you mind being stuck in traffic or does being idle drive you insane? Note that long commute times can take a toll on your health and lifestyle, so it’s an important consideration to make to early on. Another thing is travel – how much travel is involved? If you have a family and kids, excessive travel will probably require arrangements well before the job starts.
Bottom line: Commute can become an exhausting especially if you live in a high-traffic, congested area, and you’re not used it. You might want to drive the route both AM & PM before committing.
#5 The Culture
Think about whether or not this is a company you can commit to. Is the culture and environment amicable and comfortable? What are people wearing to work everyday? Are they going out for lunch or glued to their desks? What about annual reviews – do they matter? Are you eligible for annual raises and what does that process look like – how much are the raises?
Bottom line: You’ll be surprised at fast your work environment can build you up or break you down. Pick wisely.
#6 The Negotiation
After considering everything above, do you have room to negotiate? If you love the benefits package, but not the salary, find out if and how you can squeeze in a couple more thousands a year. If that doesn’t work, maybe you can ask for more time off… Again, the worst thing that happens is “NO” or a counteroffer. Never be afraid to negotiate.
Bottom line: If you don’t ask, the answer is always “No”!
Image Source Credits – Career Girl Daily