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What To Do When You Have Multiple Job Offers

By The ZipRecruiter Editors

If you’ve pursued multiple positions, you might be lucky enough to have several offers from which to choose. It’s not unusual for talented people to have many professional options, but how does one decide? Should you craft a detailed pro/con list or simply opt for whichever offer pays the most?

We’ve compiled some dos and don’ts for those considering multiple job offers.

DO Get the Offers in Writing

It’s common for hiring managers to call you first and verbally make an offer. Express your enthusiasm, but don’t make any commitments yet, even if it’s your top choice. You must get the complete picture, including benefits, pay, start date, and work-from-home options. To truly compare different job offers, you need all the data in front of you.

Let the hiring manager know you’re excited and interested in the opportunity. Then explain that you’ll need to review the full scope of the offer before deciding. Ask when and how you can expect the formal offer.

DO Take Some Time to Reflect

Sometimes a particularly flashy job offer can distract us from our professional goals. Consider each offer’s potential to advance your chosen career path or support your objectives. Ask yourself—what am I hoping to get from this job? If your number one motivation is a better work-life balance, don’t accept the offer with the most dollar signs but the least flexibility.

Make a list of your priorities. Some examples might include higher pay, better benefits, more flexibility, or less of a commute. Use this list to catalog each offer’s capacity to meet those priorities.

DO Be Transparent

It’s okay to let one employer know that you’ve received another offer. Let them know you can’t immediately decide as you’ll need time to weigh your options. Be honest; you don’t have to dig into the details but don’t play coy either. Share what attracts you to the other offer on the table. They may be willing to match it.

However, If you aren’t interested in an offer, don’t waste everyone’s time. While options are exciting, don’t string an employer along unnecessarily. The hiring process takes time, so don’t stall to simply fan your ego.

DO Negotiate

One of the perks of juggling several job offers is your new-found leverage at the negotiating table. Let’s say you have two official offers, Job A and Job B. Job A pays more, but the position isn’t as exciting. Job B is a great fit professionally, but the salary isn’t what you expect.

Let Job B know you’d prefer to work for their organization but need more incentive to turn down Job A’s stellar paycheck. Can Job B up the salary? Could they offer you a work-from-home option? Are there other perks that would sway your decision? You’ll feel more confident negotiating for what you want since you have a firm backup option.

DON’T Drag Your Feet

As mentioned, don’t string along a potential employer if you’re not interested in the job. Be direct yet courteous. If you extend their hiring timeline and ultimately pass on the offer, you may accidentally burn a professional bridge.

If you’re truly interested in the various offers on the table, ask each employer when they expect a decision. Some employers need an answer sooner than others. If you aren’t comfortable making a decision at that time, it’s better to let the opportunity go. Trust your gut; if you aren’t ready to make a clear commitment, let someone else have the opportunity.

DON’T Second Guess Your Decision

Once you’ve accepted an offer, stick with it. It takes some time to settle into a new role, and your employer has invested in you. Loyalty and integrity are essential, so don’t let what-ifs cloud your experience.

Now, if you’ve accepted a job and a truly better offer comes along, you can technically back out of your initial commitment. Before making any decisions, read through your hiring contract for potentially costly stipulations. For example, if your employer invested in your relocation or provided you with technical assistance, you could be on the hook to pay those back.

DON’T Under-Value Workplace Culture

Salary is undeniably a major factor in your decision. But don’t neglect other workplace variables that could be equally important. Studies show that while most employees quit because of poor pay, many also cite a lack of professional advancement and feeling disrespected as motivations for leaving a job.

If possible, speak with some of the current employees who work at the companies you’re considering. Get a sense of the workplace culture. Do people seem stressed? Does the employer invest in employee-driven benefits like education or childcare? What is turnover like at this organization? The answers to these questions should give you valuable insight into your potential work environment.

DON’T Make the Decision Alone

Ultimately, you should trust your gut. But you might find valuable insight by discussing the job offers with a professional mentor, friend, or family member. People have different perspectives to share and may notice a red flag or a fantastic perk you didn’t consider.

Talk through your job offers with your support network. Let’s say Job A pays a higher salary than Job B, but you must relocate to a new city. Do you have a partner or any dependents that your decision might affect? What are the long-term impacts on those around you?

Trust Yourself

Ultimately, there is not an exact science for your decision. You can’t accept all the offers, and there isn’t only one correct answer. We’re faced with daily choices, and every decision is an opportunity to grow. If you have multiple job offers, the most important takeaway is to recognize your value as an employee and trust that you will do a great job wherever you end up.

The ZipRecruiter Editors

At ZipRecruiter, our mission is to connect employers and job seekers with their next great opportunity. On the ZipRecruiter blog, we use insider experience and data derived from our AI-driven jobs marketplace to provide advice and insights on topics such as the job search process, interviewing, and labor market trends. Start your job search or post a job today and connect with us on TwitterFacebook, and LinkedIn!

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