March 2021 – 15 min read
Congratulations! Your resume, cover letter and interview were successful and you’ve been offered a job. Or maybe you’re choosing between 2 job offers. Here are some ways to choose the opportunity that’s the best fit for you.
While you likely have an idea of how much you want to be paid, make sure you research local pay ranges for the same industry and position.
As well, you’ll want to understand how future pay raises and bonuses will be determined.
While a job is wonderful, eventually you’ll need to take some vacation. Find out how many days of paid time off you receive to start, and how much you can take at 1 time. As well, find out how long you need to work there before you get more vacation time. You may also want to ask if the company offers paid personal days or volunteering days in addition to your earned vacation time.
For many people, health, dental, pension and other group benefits are a very important part of their compensation.
If the employer doesn’t offer health and dental benefits, you’ll need to pay for those expenses out-of-pocket, or invest in personal health and dental insurance.
As well, if the employer doesn’t offer a group pension, profit-sharing or registered retirement savings plan (RRSP), saving for your retirement will be entirely your responsibility.
If you’re offered the choice between a raise in pay versus benefits, you should understand how much benefits are worth to you. In many cases, they might save you hundreds if not thousands of dollars.
Know what you’re bringing the employer – Education, related and overall experience, skills, licenses and certification, abilities.
Know the market, locally and nationally.
Know your expenses – costs to commute, moveOpens in a new window or for childcare, and any losses in benefits or flexibility.
Prepare negotiation points – Explain why you deserve the salary you’re requesting. Practice the conversation in a mirror or with someone else.
Know when to say no – While it’s important to be flexible, if the employer can’t come close to your expectations, then be ready to respectfully decline the job offer.
- Does the company offer flexible ways to work and good work-life balance?
- Is the company healthy or have any financial red flags?
- Do you fit the company culture?
- Will you learn and grow in this job?
- Are there other job perks like a gym membership, tuition reimbursement, etc.
While there’s no exact number of days, 1 week is standard. However, this is something you can negotiate.
If the employer is pressuring you to decide in a hurry, it may indicate how they might treat you as an employee.
Be honest with the employer about how much time you need to make your decision and why.
And while it’s tempting to accept the job offer immediately, you may lose your opportunity to ask questions and negotiate later.
You should never lose a job by asking for time to think about it or reviewing all the job details. This gives you time to check with any other potential employers and discuss the new opportunity with your family to ensure it’s the right move for you.
Now that you understand more about how to evaluate a job offer, you may also want to:
The information provided is based on current laws, regulations and other rules applicable to Canadian residents. It is accurate to the best of our knowledge as of the date of publication. Rules and their interpretation may change, affecting the accuracy of the information. The information provided is general in nature, and should not be relied upon as a substitute for advice in any specific situation. For specific situations, advice should be obtained from the appropriate legal, accounting, tax or other professional advisors.