What to consider before accepting a job offer

Receiving a job offer means you’ve made it through the toughest part of the job search. All your research, networking and applications have paid off – but you still have to decide whether the job, company and industry are the right fit for you. There are a few key things to consider before you accept a position and make the official transition into the civilian workforce.

1. What does the offer really hold for you?

This is perhaps the most important questions to address at this time. You have to consider whether this job will provide the lifestyle you want. Are you going to be professionally satisfied? Does the work match your interests and how will it make use of your current skills? Also, very importantly, is the position interesting and challenging?

2. Company culture

It is important to understand the company culture before accepting a job offer, because this will determine how well you fit into the team, company and workplace. Thanks to the internet, it is relatively easy to investigate a company’s website and social media platforms. This will give you a better picture of what to expect and whether the company values and beliefs are aligned with your own. It will be far easier to transition into your new role if you are enthusiastic about the organisation’s vision and goals. It is not uncommon for the OA to have ex officers looking for another role within a year so do think carefully about your values. For instance, how important is ‘decision making’ – some organisations can be very bureaucratic.

3. Salary and Benefits

Salary negotiations can be tricky – but if you don’t think the offer is fair, there’s no harm in having an open discussion with the hiring manager. If you have been networking you should have an understanding of your value in targeted roles. Also look carefully at similar advertised roles (but don’t be seduced by the job title, it is the breadth of responsibilities and decision making that should drive the salary). Try to talk to other ex officers at the Company if you can. Assess the benefits package and which benefits you are eligible for – a good benefits package often makes up for a lower salary. Many companies have a one-pager that outlines the benefits and perks – don’t be afraid to ask for it, or speak with the person concerned to get more details.

4. Training opportunities & professional development

As enthusiastic as you might be about accepting the job offer, it’s important to assess how this job will help you grow professionally (where will you be in 3-5 years time and how much will you have been able to grow). Are there new skills that you need to learn? Will the necessary training be provided to you? Also, it’s worth considering how well your skills and talents will be utilised in this position. Don’t hesitate to discuss this with the hiring manager, as it shows your willingness to learn and grow with the business.

5. The people

Ensure you know enough about your future boss or supervisor to decide whether you would be comfortable working with them. Ask yourself if your supervisor is someone you can learn from, and who can help you grow. Considering how much time we spend at work it’s important that colleagues are a great fit professionally and personality-wise. You may have had the chance to interact with others during your interview, and this could shed some light on what to expect. Ask yourself, would you be comfortable working alongside them? Would they be supportive? Do they seem happy?

Once you’ve answered these questions and made a fair assessment of the offer, you can make a well-informed decision. If you decide to take the job, you will feel confident and prepared to deal with any new challenges proactively. If you decline, you can feel assured that your decision was based on a thorough understanding of your options.

If we can be of any assistance during this time of transition, get in touch with us here.