Should You Ask for Time to Consider a Job Offer?

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Deciding whether or not to accept a job offer often warrants thinking time. Here’s how to give yourself more time respectfully and professionally…

While receiving a job offer can be exciting, there are plenty of situations where you might want to take a beat to consider it thoroughly before deciding on your next course of action.

Whether you’re unsure about the job or simply want the chance to explore other options while you hold onto the offer, there can be multiple reasons to request extra time.

In this guide, we’ll explain how you can decide whether to put in the request and provide you with our tips for how best to approach the conversation.

Weighing up the reasons why you want extra time

Understanding why you want to take time to assess a job offer is the first step if you’re at all hesitant or undecided.

There are plenty of valid reasons for wanting more time to weigh up your options. Here are some of the most common reasons for requesting extra time to consider a job offer:

–      Comparing other jobs: If you’re fortunate enough to hold multiple job offers, you might want some extra time to compare all your options.

–      The job requires you to make a big life change: From relocating to changes in your working style, any job requiring a potential lifestyle change should be granted an extended consideration period. This will allow you to consult family, friends, and anyone else it could affect, such as those you live with.

–      You require further information: Whether you want to do further research or have questions you want to ask, using the extra time to do this rather than rushing into a decision will do you and the company a favour.

–      You feel unsure about anything stated in the offer: You should feel confident in your decision. Remove any uncertainty by taking the time to think carefully about your decision.

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How to ask for time to consider a job offer

Although most employers will expect your decision to take a few days, any extra time might not be on their radar. Therefore, you must approach the topic carefully.

Below, we’ll delve into our top tips on asking a potential employer if you can have more time to consider a job offer.

Phrase your initial response carefully 

Most job offers are made verbally first, with a formal written offer coming later. So, you need to have in mind what you’ll say over the phone when the employer or recruiter reaches out to you.

If for whatever reason you intend to ask for extra time, ensure your initial response is positive. You should be ready to explain why you need time to consider their offer. Be honest and transparent here; a vague response may not wash with recruiters and hiring managers.

Ask about specific response times

When responding to a job offer, make sure you find out when the employer/recruiter expects you to respond by. Companies are looking to fill roles quickly and, make no mistake: they’ll still be considering other candidates until you accept, so it’s in your best interest to be as time-efficient as possible.

They won’t want you to feel rushed into your decision, but they also won’t want to be left without somebody to fill the position. If the amount of time you originally wanted doesn’t line up with their preferences, you can still try coming to a mutual agreement on a suitable decision-making period.

When you’ve reached a decision, let the company know as soon as possible. Yes or no, they’ll want to know how to move forward.

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Be thankful for the job offer

Although you aren’t giving them an immediate decision on the offer, you should still demonstrate your appreciation. After the initial phone offer, we’d recommend sending a follow-up email with a line or two about how thankful you are for their offer, as this will show enthusiasm for the role and towards the company.

Plus, this gives you an opportunity to further reiterate why you need more time to consider an offer.

Ask questions about the role

Not only do questions communicate your interest in the role and company, but they also demonstrate your willingness and eagerness to learn.

Use this opportunity to initiate salary negotiations, if necessary, or to clarify anything you don’t understand. Questions will ensure that the communication lines stay open during the allotted time, which keeps you on their radar.

Commit to the agreed deadline

Don’t deviate from the agreed deadline. If you ask for three days to consider the role, you should ideally respond before that deadline.

Responding late will show poor time management skills and suggests to the hiring manager that you don’t respect their time. Even if your final answer is a rejection, you should always want to stay on good terms with the people involved in your hiring process. After all, you never know which professional connections you might need in the future.

Disrespecting the agreed deadline will go against you in most situations, so ensure you stick to it.

To find out more about careers at SEFE Marketing & Trading please visit our homepage.

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