How to Assess a Job Offer – Reading Between the Lines


Congratulations! The wait is finally over – the offer letter is lying on your table. You’re itching to say yes. But have you really thought it over, read through the fine print? Read on to know what you’re probably missing:

What’s your role? 1

Verify whether the offer contains the same title and position that you interviewed for. The key introductory elements of a job offer are the title, position, department, and business unit. Also ensure that the proposition contains a brief summary of your role and responsibilities. You don’t want to be teased into a role that isn’t adequately defined. If you are however joining a startup, more spontaneity and flexibility will probably be expected of you. So don’t hope to operate by your job description, word for word.

How much will you earn?2

This is probably the first thing you checked, but give it another look anyway – the compensation section. Make sure your cost to the company is defined right down to the little details, including your house rent and travel allowances. You’ll need these to plan your taxes, in addition to helping with your general budgeting. Find the going salary for the position in case you need to negotiate a better deal. To get an idea of general packages industry-wide, refer to websites like If the company feels you’re worth it, you may just seal a higher package.

What additional benefits do you get?3

Once you’ve checked the salary section, review your benefits schedule. Often, job seekers focus on the salary and ignore this key component. The benefits augment your overall package in the long run, especially as they add on considerably to the base remuneration. Are you part of a health plan? Does it describe retirement savings options, provident fund quotients, profit sharing, and employee stock purchase programs?

What’s your date of joining?4

Is your start date the same as you discussed with your hiring manager? Does it give you enough time to serve notice if you’re currently employed? Make sure that it is, and that you are comfortable with it. Meet all and any personal obligations you may have prior to this date of joining. Taking frequent leaves as soon as you start with your new employer may not sit too well with them.

What’s the exit protocol? 5

Check the termination and notice clause – can the employer end the relationship at a time of their choosing? Are you free to do the same? What is the notice period you will need to serve? You won’t want any surprises once you’re actually part of the organization.

If you haven’t already reviewed your offer letter with these points in mind, it’s time you do. A hurried and uninformed decision is the last thing you would want to regret. It’s great to keep the firm in mind, and you absolutely should – but also take a second and review whether the job is really for you.



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One comment on “How to Assess a Job Offer – Reading Between the Lines
  1. diya says:

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