5 Things to Consider Before Accepting a New Job

With a U.S. unemployment rate steadily dropping (but still high at 8.5 percent), many people are so eager to get a job that, as soon as they are offered one, they jump on the opportunity before considering all the factors that may have either deterred them or made their acceptance of the job more affirming. Let’s look at five things you should consider before you say yes to a job offer.

1. Figure out if you are a good fit with the company. This goes both ways, and just because a job looks great on paper or the computer screen, doesn’t mean you will like each other once you get settled in.

In fact, a recent survey showed that 84 percent of workers want to leave their jobs in 2012. How could that be so high in this economy? Well, it’s because people are taking whatever they can get, and not actually evaluating themselves before doing their job search to find out what type of jobs they should be searching for. You can take the initiative to find out what you are meant to do by taking self-assessments that will give you a better look at what you are meant to do. It’s not too late to do this if you haven’t accepted the job offer yet — and it is better to find out now, rather than later.

2. Make sure you are able to meet job expectations. Read the job description thoroughly and make sure that you understand all of the expectations the company has. During interviews, people can oftentimes say that they can do just about anything, but when reality sets in and you start the new job, you may get overwhelmed if you don’t know what you are doing. It will also make you lose credibility and make you look bad. Just be sure you can take on what you signed up for!

3. Really look at how well established the company is. In this economy, businesses are failing left and right. If it isn’t one of the most secure jobs in America, then make sure you take a look at how well they have done over the last five years during the recession. If they weathered the storm or came back from it stronger than ever, you just might have yourself a great company to work for. If it is a startup and it is something you are passionate about, then be the risk taker you were meant to be!

4. Know what job growth you can expect. Before you accept the position (and if you didn’t do so during the interview process), make sure you ask what the growth opportunities will be over time. Stick to your goal plan and make sure that this job won’t be a dead end for you, or else you will quickly be part of that 84 percent looking for a new job…and you may find yourself starting at the bottom of the ladder somewhere else.

5. Make sure you are comfortable with the benefits and compensation. You deserve to get paid what you are worth and to have great benefits and health coverage. Before you accept the offer, make sure the salary or hourly wage is competitive — or is at least something you can live with if you really need the job to gain experience. With most companies, the offer letter is a starting off point, but open for negotiation. Especially consider how easy or difficult it is to fill the position. The more difficult, the more room for negotiating.

After you have considered all of these things and you feel that the job is right for you, then go for it. You were given a great opportunity in the midst of a tough economy, so be thankful and give it the best you can!

What other factors are important to consider before accepting a new job?

Mona Abdel-Halim is the co-founder of Resunate, a web-based software to evaluate your resume for every job. Resunate has recently partnered with Myers-Briggs® to give users the option to take the assessment online and feed their results into its engine, enabling Resunate to provide personalized resume feedback based on your type. You can find Mona and Resunate on Facebook and Twitter.

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