For those who have never had more than one job offer in hand simultaneously, this topic may make your eyes roll. After all, who doesn’t want to be courted by multiple companies at the same time?
But those who have been there – or are there right now – know that juggling competing offers while keeping a level head isn’t as straightforward as simply picking one. You might be wondering, how do you keep one company at bay while you finalize things with the other? Should you tell the companies about each other? When? How? And if the offers are almost identical, how do you possibly decide between them?
Here’s what to do—and what not to do -- if you have multiple job offers on the table.
Express Your Enthusiasm Without Saying Yes
In the last few weeks, you’ve sent out dozens of applications, spent hours researching potential employers, and been through round after round of zoom interviews. You finally found two (or more) positions that could be perfect for you, and after a long and stressful job search, your first instinct might be to say “YES!!” to the first company that makes you an offer. But don’t commit just yet – especially if you have other options on the table.
If you make it through the final interview and a recruiter is prepared to offer you a job, express your enthusiasm for the company and the role, say thank you, and ask when they need your decision by. Then step back and breathe. It’s great to feel wanted in the moment, but after making a pros and cons list, doing a deep-dive into the contract, or maybe a little soul searching, you may feel differently about the offer.
If You Have Multiple Similar Offers…
It’s easy to make a pros and cons list if you’re trying to decide between two very different offers, but what if they’re both from two mid to large-size companies with similar responsibilities, benefits, and salaries? Should you flip a coin? And if not, how can you decide between them? This is where you factor in variables that you won’t find in the job description, like corporate culture, advancement opportunities, workflow differences, and even lifestyle factors (like commute time or wellness programs). If these topics never came up in the interviews, give your HR rep a call or send them an email, and use their responses to make your decision a little easier.
If You’re Waiting on Another Offer…
Let’s say you’re interviewing with two companies: ABC Unlimited and XYZ Inc. ABC Unlimited is your top choice, and you have a final interview scheduled with them three days from now. But you already had your final interview with XYZ Inc., and you woke up to a written offer from them in your inbox. They want a decision in 48 hours.
It’s appropriate to be honest with the HR rep or recruiter from XYZ Inc. – but only if you do so with extreme care. You don’t want to make it seem like you’re going to pit the companies against each other in a bidding war. If you need some more time to make a decision, say something like, “I am so grateful for the offer and excited about the possibility of joining XYZ Unlimited. I know you want my response by Thursday. I have one final conversation booked this week with another company, and I’d like to see it through. Would it be possible to have one to three extra days to firm up my decision?”
At Post Up, we can help you with all phases of the job search process – including navigating multiple job offers, salary negotiations, and helping you with your overall career goals to ensure the perfect job fit. Contact us here to schedule a career coaching appointment, and let us help you find, secure -- and accept -- the job you’ve always dreamed about.