How do you know if a job is right for you?
Sam Wilson, August 7, 2014
Getting a job offer is an exciting thing, all your hard work and preparation have paid off and you’ve fought off all the competition. However, just because you are offered a job doesn’t mean that you have to take it.
When considering a job offer it is essential that you establish whether the job is right for you, if you are going to be happy there and if it suits your needs. In this article I will discuss the important things to consider and what you can do to ensure that you have all the information you need to make the right decision.
Before accepting a job offer make sure you get all the basic information.
Never accept an offer without knowing the exact salary on offer, this should be discussed at the final interview before the offer is made but if not then you are completely entitled to ask before accepting. It’s important to make sure that the salary is fair and it is worthwhile doing some research on what similar companies offer for equivalent positions.
It’s also important to find out details such as working hours and holiday entitlement. You don’t want to accept a job only to discover that the hours weren’t what you expected and you don’t have as much holiday as you’d like. Obviously we’d all love shorter working days and more holiday time but it’s important that you’re aware of your entitlements and that they fit in with your needs and expectations.
It’s also good to get an idea of what benefits you will be entitled to, once you have a full picture of everything then you can make an informed decision based on what is important to you. It might be that the salary is lower than you would have liked but you have access to a gym that would save you a monthly membership that makes up for it.
Before accepting any offer it is really important that you get an idea of who you’re going to be working with. This should, at the very least, involve an opportunity to meet your manager. In an ideal world this would have happened at the interview stage but sometimes interviews will be done by a HR representative. In these situations it is completely reasonable to request a meeting with the person who will be managing you. Talking to your would-be manager gives you the opportunity to ask about the team that you will be working in and the working relationships that you will have. It is also the best way to get a full idea of the day to day duties that will be expected of you.
Sometimes you will have the opportunity to meet your potential colleagues as part of the recruitment process which gives you the opportunity to get an idea of the culture of the company and how well you might fit into it. This is very important as it will contribute significantly to your happiness at work.
Going into a job without a proper idea of who you’re going to be working with and the environment that you will be entering is an incredibly risky move. Any organisation that isn’t willing to help you get a proper idea of these things should be treated with a level of caution as they may well have something to hide.
You may well intend to stay in the job you’ve applied for for many years however it is always important to think about the future. Consider what opportunities might exist for you and whether the organisation that has offered you the position will support your continued development.
Organisations should actively invest in their employees and provide learning and development opportunities. This is a mutually beneficial approach as the employees continue to develop their skills and the organisation gains a more skilled and experienced workforce. Before accepting a job offer, you are well within your rights to ask about what training opportunities will be available to you. This is a good way to gauge the organisation’s approach and opinions regarding training.
It is perfectly reasonable to ask what the next step up would be within an organisation when applying for a position. You obviously don’t want to give the impression that you are going to immediately be looking for a promotion, however asking about the future shows that you are ambitious and also that you are willing to commit to the organisation for years to come.
So before you accept that offer take some time to think about the opportunity that is being presented to you and make sure that all aspects of it suit you and your needs. Accepting a new job is a big deal and you should be absolutely sure that it’s right for you before taking the plunge.