How to Respond to a Job Offer

August 15th, 2010 by lewis

Alison Green wrote a great article on titled “5 Things to Do When You Get a Job Offer.” Out of the 5 tips, my two favorite tips are:
It never hurts to negotiate. Who knows? You might get what you ask for.

Ask for the offer in writing
Verbal offers, while helpful, do not offer all the details. Always insist on a written offer by paper, fax, or email. A written offer allows you to consider the offer in its entirety.

In addition to Alison’s 5 points, here are two more tips that I’d consider when responding to a job offer:

Do your salary research
Get a sense of what the company is paying other candidates for a similar role. is a great resource for corporate salary information. During negotiations, you can use salary calculators from and PayScale to help establish your market value. Lastly, if you need a refresher on negotiation, my two favorite negotiation books include Getting to Yes and Bargaining for Advantage: Negotiation Strategies for Reasonable People.

Ignore the pressure

Before receiving a job offer, you are chasing after the company. Once you get the offer, the employer is now chasing you. They’ll be very aggressive in pursuing you. You’re the one for them! Not only is there an emotional attachment, but also finding a replacement candidate is quite costly.

With this in mind, the employer wants you to accept the job offer as quickly as possible. Don’t succumb to the pressure. If you need more time to assess the offer, ask for it. Finding the right job takes time. There’s no reason to rush your decision-making process, only to regret it later.

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One Response to “How to Respond to a Job Offer”

  1. August 16, 2010 at 1:33 pm, preludia said:

    #1 recommendation: be upfront and honest with the companies you have offers from. Worst thing you can do is play one company against another, especially if you already know you're going to accept one offer and not the other. It's not fair to the company you will be turning down, and it shows poor character as well. Do all the negotiating and such, but in the end, don't be a jerk about it.