For Employees: How to Evaluate a Job Offer

Too many job offers?

You got the opposite problem of most people.

Consider yourself very lucky-- or unlucky (depending how you look at it) since you still have to figure out which job offer is right for you.

The truth is being offered a new job is always a great feeling. Regardless what type of job it is, the fact that the employer wants you is very gratifying. The tendency to put in your two-week notice and start packing up your desk can be exciting. Even so, make sure that you know what you are getting into before you jump into a new job.

The terms of a job offer should be written out in black and white. When the offer is made, make certain to spend some time reading over every word and determining exactly what the terms and conditions of the job are. Salary, benefits and the conditions of employment should all be very clear before you accept the offer.

What was said in the interview might not be reflected on paper. And yes, written is more binding and the final truth.

This is especially common from sales jobs. That advertised pay rate might be what you make with commission NOT on an hourly rate. Or worse the commission percentage offered is after a certain amount of sales are made. This could be a major issue if your sales do not go well at first.

The hours you will be working is another issue you will want to figure out before you take the job. Find out specifically when you are expected to work. Maybe they want you to be oncall. Would you be okay with that? This could be tricky with people with busy family schedules or other obligations.

This brings me to another question: will there be travel? Many jobs post this in their advertisements but others are not so upfront with this information. Your spouse might not like that fact you will be miles away sleeping in a different bed.

The most overlooked mistake people make when evaluating if the job is a fit is not checking out the work environment. Have you met some other employees in the company? Also, why are they hiring? Did they fire someone? What was the workplace like before you? Try to get the story.

This brings me to the next point, which is the culture or the attitude of the company itself.

What will your job entail? Will you be surrounded by a corporate mentality that is concerned only with numbers? Or is it more personable? Do the people you're going to work with seem supportive? And does the job have a support system in case you get lost or you will feel like you're "all alone."

The number 1 "trick" to see if the job is good is to find out about the turnover rate of this position. There may be a reason why the employer is so ready to offer you the job. If it's "too good to be true, it usually is."