How to decide between multiple job offers
The job application process can often be daunting. You spend a great deal of time crafting and presenting the best version of yourself in the hope that one of the companies you apply to accepts you in a role. Few people consider the idea of multiple businesses being keen to bring them on board.
Yet, it’s a very real possibility, particularly in industries with significant skills gaps you can fill. While it’s great to receive multiple offers, it can also be quite overwhelming. After all, this new job may represent an important change in your life.
How can you make the right decision for you and your future? In this post, we’ll look at how you can decide between multiple job offers to make the best decision to carry your career forward.
Establish your priorities
Many people approach the job application process from a position of need. When applying for these roles, you probably focused on the priorities of the companies to tailor your resume to emphasize the skills and attributes they were looking for. However, when you have multiple job offers, the focus shifts. This is a chance for you to make decisions based on your priorities.
It’s important to solidify what these are. Are you most interested in the salary package being offered? Are you looking for specific perks and benefits? Do you see a job as a route toward loftier career goals and therefore want paths for development and progression? Perhaps a company culture that maintains high ethical values is among your most important considerations.
The easiest route forward here occurs if one of the companies that gave you an offer has all these attributes. Unfortunately, things are rarely so straightforward. In all likelihood, each company will have a selection of these elements to differing extents. Therefore, you also need to prioritize your needs. Rank your list in order of what is most important to you. This gives you a clearer basis on which to see how each company meets your requirements.
Do some research
Your list of priorities alone usually isn’t enough. While aspects such as pay and benefits will be outlined by the business in your offer, you may not have an understanding of their company culture and ethical standards. You might have had the opportunity to ask some questions about these during the interview process, but you’ll generally only get answers from people in leadership positions. As such, it’s worth doing a bit of research.
If you’re prioritizing ethical and social standards, do some online searches into the company’s history. Don’t just look at whether they’ve had scandals or missteps in the past. Instead, look at how they’ve responded to these issues. What have they communicated to staff and the public? Did they follow through on their commitments to change? A company’s reaction to its failures tells you more than the failure itself.
When researching elements of workplace culture, the best insight comes from employees. If you have friends or family that currently work in the business, this can be a great resource as you’ll get contemporary and relatively candid information. However, looking on employer review sites like Glassdoor is also wise, to get transparent and honest insights into what it’s really like to work with the company.
Formalise the decision-making process
It’s easy to get stuck in your own head when making big life decisions. There aren’t just priorities you have to consider, after all. There may be various emotional and practical components involved. You might need to move to a different city to take the job that meets all your needs. You could be experiencing some anxiety about an offer that places greater levels of responsibility on your shoulders. Moving all this information from your head to an external tool can help to clarify things.
Formalising the decision-making process in a step-by-step fashion can make the situation more manageable and practical. This allows you to see what needs to be achieved, the hurdles in your path, and the solutions you have at your disposal. You should make a visual list of each of the 7 steps: identify the decision, gather relevant info, identify the alternatives, weigh the evidence, choose among the alternatives, take action, and review your decision. Utilize decision trees to help you evaluate your options and the potential outcomes. This approach can help to make things less overwhelming, and give you guidance on what’s the best path forward.
Respond to everyone
Once you’ve made your decision, it’s important to remember that accepting the offer is not the end of the process. The other companies were enthusiastic about the idea of you joining them, too. Their leadership and human resources (HR) representatives took the time to review your application, interview you for the role, and plan what they felt was an appropriate job offer for you. It’s respectful to take the time to reach out to them and inform them of your decision, rather than simply ghosting them. You don’t want to burn bridges in case you want to work with them in the future.
An email or a phone call may be sufficient in these circumstances. However, a formal letter can reflect well on you as a candidate and a considerate human. Take the time to make a professional letterhead that creates a memorable visual identity for you, like a personal brand. You don’t necessarily need to design a logo, but an elegant monogram or just your name in an eye-catching typeface can be impactful. This can show you genuinely care about the response you’re providing and create a positive impression in the minds of these companies’ representatives.
Receiving multiple job offers is an exciting prospect, but it can also be overwhelming. Take the time to understand your priorities and research to better understand how each company fits you. Clarify things using tools like decision trees to make reviewing your options more manageable. When you reach a decision, don’t forget to demonstrate your respect and appreciation by responding to the other businesses that have given you offers. With some careful consideration and organization, you can make the best decision to take your career forward.
Featured image courtesy of Pexels
Charlie Fletcher is a freelance writer from the lovely “city of trees”- Boise, Idaho. Her love of writing pairs with her passion for social activism and search for the truth. You can follow her work at charliefletcher.contently.com