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A job offer can be made in a number of ways. Verbally through a recruitment consultant or by the company directly, as a formal offer in writing or via a formal interview accompanied with a formal offer.
If you receive a verbal offer of employment, you will ordinarily receive a formal letter and contract of employment in the mail or on commencement of the first day of employment.
Sometimes, provisional verbal offers of employment are made subject to the receipt of satisfactory references, security checks and, possibly, health checks. If you verbally accept an offer, you are not bound by this until you have signed a formal offer letter and/or contract of employment.
Do not sign this until you are satisfied with what you are being offered; salary, benefits and conditions of employment etc. Always wait until you have had the chance to consider the contents prior to your formal acceptance. If the offer doesn't meet your expectations, identify what you need to do to bring it to a level you are satisfied with.
Once you have received the formal letter offer (contract), you should return a signed copy within two to three days, keeping a copy for yourself.
People are often so flattered by receiving a job offer, and dismayed with their existing employer, that they accept a new role without considering the offer carefully. Make sure you're not 'jumping from the frying pan into the fire'.
You do not have to accept the job offer on the spot! Consider the offer in more detail and say that you will get back to them as soon as possible or suggest an actual day.
If you are sure the offer is right for you, you can of course accept it there and then.
If you think the offer is not right for you, don't feel pressured into saying "yes". This move should be the next step in your career and you need to know that it feels right. Politely request a couple of days to think about it and follow up other potential offers you have considered.
When you receive an offer letter you are in the position to negotiate conditions of employment, including salary, benefits and a start date.
If you have a Recruitment Consultant representing you, salary, benefits and starting dates will be negotiated on your behalf since consultant's job is to enable you to get the best package possible whilst satisfying the company's needs.
If you are negotiating directly with an organization it is important to have a clear and realistic idea of what you want in regard to salary and benefits.
You will need to have done some research into market salaries to know what you might aspire to, and what you should not be prepared to accept.
Effective negotiation is all about creating a win/win situation for both you and the company hiring you. This means you get the salary and benefits you want and the company will benefit by hiring you.
One offer can be very flattering, let alone more than one. But before getting carried away, you will need to ask yourself:
If you decide to accept an offer, do so for the right reasons, and consider your skills, knowledge and attributes. Choose the offer that provides the best match.
To help you to map out your decision-making process, why not get pieces of blank paper, write the job title and employer's name at the top, then draw a vertical line down the middle. Give each of the 2 columns a heading "Pros" and "Cons", and then start to complete each one. Doing this exercise with your partner or friend can help your decision process.
Some people find this one of the most difficult aspects of changing job (although others relish it)! It can be emotionally difficult letting go of the organization you are leaving, especially if you have made good friends there and have invested a lot of time and energy in doing your job to the best of your ability.
Appropriate actions around the time of you leaving include the following: