Making a Decision on Job Offers

“Congratulations, our company is pleased to offer you the position!”

Receiving communication like this, whether via email or a phone, should be a time for celebration.  But those feelings of jubilation and relief can turn to anxiety as now you must decide on whether to accept.  

When that moment arrives, consider these tips to make the best decision for you and your career.    

Ask Yourself

After applying for a position, and before an offer has been officially sent your way, it helps to think about the fit of the role and the company you will be working for.  This will give you some early indications on how you might be feeling if and when you receive the offer.  

Don’t Accept Right Away

Take a breath!  It’s important to not get caught up in the moment and to give yourself some time to think of questions you have and what aspects of the offer you may want to negotiate before you say yes.  Also, accepting on the spot can hinder your ability to negotiate.  Instead, determine when their deadline is and draft a response.  But do so within a few hours, if possible.  You don’t want to leave the hiring coordinator hanging nor give off the impression you are not enthusiastic about working for the company.  Tell them you are grateful for the offer, are excited about the opportunity, and would like to take the next couple of days to consider the details of the offer and discuss it with your family.  End the communication by saying you will be in touch by (insert date, assuming they gave you one) and that you are happy to discuss further if they have any questions or concerns. 

If a deadline is not given, ask, “Is there a deadline date for me to respond to the offer?” This will buy you additional time to make a decision you’re confident about.  

Other Interviews/Offers In Progress

If your decision to accept the position is contingent on another upcoming interview and/or offer that is past the first company’s deadline date, be honest.  Let the employer know you have other interviews lined up over the next week and would like to follow through on them.  But express how excited you are about the offer and that this is your leading choice (if it truly is). Then, kindly ask if you can finish what is already in progress and follow up with them promptly afterwards.

The employer should appreciate the honesty and sense of responsibility to fulfill your commitments. However, they may keep to their deadline and request an answer before your other commitments are over.  If this happens, we suggest you go back to the other companies  you are interviewing with to see if they can expedite the process.  

Come To The Career Center

Take a look at the Career Center’s Evaluating an Offer and Salary Negotiation Page.  Here you will find useful tips like, Considering the Big Picture, How to Negotiate Your Salary and BC’s Job Offer Policy.  Or you can set up a time to make an appointment with one of our Career Cluster Coaches who can provide additional support and assistance.

– By Jonathan Rosenthal, Assistant Director, Career Education

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