When you receive a written job offer from an employer, it can be tempting to accept right away, especially given the competitiveness of today’s IT job market. However, you should never accept a job offer without receiving an offer letter in writing. Job offers can tell you a lot about a potential employer and can give you a good idea of just how valuable your position is with the company.
Here is what to look for in an IT job offer:
It is critical to be clear of your job title so that you know what is expected of you and where you fit in to the larger picture. Your offer letter should also include the names and job titles of your immediate supervisors. Review the titles and be sure that everything makes sense. If, for example, you thought you were applying for a senior developer position and your job title lacks the word “senior,” or labels you a “junior,” you will need to have a conversation with the hiring manager (and receive a new offer) before accepting.
Before accepting an offer, you must understand what your base pay will be and how often you will receive a paycheck. If bonuses were discussed during the interview process, an explanation of the bonus structure should also be included in the letter. Always be sure to ask about the timing of salary reviews, as well.
Before accepting an offer, find out about the health and dental plan offered by the organization, if any. Also ask for a statement of costs. You’ll want to know how much you are expected to contribute to the health plan, and how much the employer covers. In most cases you will be ineligible for health benefits for several weeks, so be sure to find out how long you must wait to enroll in the plan.
Sick Days, Personal Days, and Vacation Pay and Policies
Before accepting an offer, it’s important to see, in writing, the company’s polices surrounding sick days, personal days, floating holidays, and vacation days. Every company is unique, so never make assumptions about these important policies. You can also use vacation time as a point of negotiation if you are offered less time than you have at your current position.
Your start date should be stated in your offer letter, as well. If you are currently employed, the start date should give you enough time to give your organization two weeks’ notice. For managers, or for those employees on a contract, four weeks could be required. It is acceptable to negotiate your start date to help you make a smooth transition into your new career.
If you are an IT professional seeking new opportunities for professional growth, contact The Prevalent Group today. Our team of recruiters can help you locate information technology jobs in Chicago that will help you achieve your long-term career goals.