Amid sluggish economic conditions and an equally stagnant job market, it might be tempting to accept any job offer that comes your way.
For young jobseekers, being offered a job right after graduation may also be a source of validation. Unfortunately, many make the mistake of jumping on a job opportunity without seriously considering how it might impact their future.
We list several factors for you to give thought to when you are offered a job.
Salary and Benefits
Your monthly paycheck and employee benefits should not be the only consideration, but it is an important deal-breaker. You do not want to mull over the fact that you are getting rewarded less than what you feel you are worth.
With that said, remember not to pay too much attention to the monetary prospects and too little to what the company or employer has to offer. Money does not necessarily rank at the top for job satisfaction, and there are other important variables to look out for.
Your Career Goals
Whatever your career goals are, your contract should outline what you need to feed your success. Ask all the questions you need (more specifically, what the job entails), what your responsibilities will be and how they expect you to contribute to the company. Some employees might find rotation within departments a catch, while others are drawn to the prospect of a promising climb up the corporate ladder.
No matter how exciting the job prospects may have seemed at the interview, make sure that the recruiters were not merely painting a pretty picture for you to hear. You should delve deeper into the background of the company by exploring its corporate website and talking to people who have been in the industry. Ask yourself if you would take pride in associating yourself with the company and if you are comfortable with telling others about it.
Company Culture and Environment
After having sat through an interview or two with the company, you should have observed some aspects of the company's culture. Was the atmosphere relaxed or fast-paced? Did the employees bury their heads in work or were they jovial? These are only subtle clues as to what the company's culture is like, but they can help you decide if you would be able to fit in.
You should consider if your personality is a good match with the company's culture. For instance, if you are outgoing and people-oriented, you might not enjoy working in a silo environment. Likewise, reserved personalities might feel out of place in an environment that promotes gregariousness.
In addition, take a tour around the office building or even workspace if possible – inspect the neighbourhood of the building; every shelf, every nook of the office – to get a feel of what your future workplace will look and feel like.
As much as you would like to be thorough and fuss over what the company is offering, there is a similar need to project these considerations inward and consider if you are capable of living up to the company's expectations. Reflect on your abilities and consider if you are able to comfortably fulfil the objectives and requirements of the position. Be sure to ask the hiring manager about the key performance indicators of the job to ascertain how your success will be measured.
Moreover, you should also feel comfortable with every aspect of the job scope. Enquire about what your day-to-day work truly entails, and read through your job description in the contract carefully.
Location, Location, Location
Location is a VERY underrated consideration. Think about it – if you live far away from your workplace, you might have to spend a considerable amount of time commuting. Spending more time on commute means that you might have to sacrifice precious sleep. If you resent the thought of pushing your way through a sea of scurrying commuters twice a day (and for long periods at that), you might be better off choosing a workplace that is nearer to your home. After all, your morning encounters often set your mood for the rest of the day, and an enviable work location hits this pedal with a good start.