When you are looking for a job, you naturally want to find one quickly. If it has been a while since your last paycheck, you might be a bit on the desperate side. Even so, it is unwise to say yes to a job offer if you do not know the answer to the following five questions.
How to evaluate a job offer
1. How stable is the company?
Does it have a good track record? Reliable funding? A solid business plan?
It is not necessarily bad to work for an organization that is just starting up, going out of business or dependent on irregular funding as long as you understand what you are getting into. A shaky start-up or struggling business might be just the place to hone your skills, but it could also mean you will be looking for another job in six months.
You should understand the company's situation before you start so you can decide if it fits your plans.
2. What are my working conditions?
Will you be part of a team or working primarily by yourself?
How much autonomy will you have?
Will you work at home or in an office, on the flexible schedule or 9 to 5?
Remember, one day you will have to write about this job on your resume and identify your functions. Take a look at the job description. Are these responsibilities quantifiable? In other words, do you see the potential for any accomplishements that you can proudly write about on your resume and on your personal portfolio?
3. Am I aligned with the company's Mission Statement?
Does the company culture match your value system?
If not, will the differences cause problems for you or for the organization?
What is the company's Mission Statement?
Do you foresee "career growth"?
4. Do I foresee any kind of "career growth" for myself here?
How much career advancement is possible?
Does the organization provide advanced training or support continuing education?
Will you be able to use your newly acquired skills in future jobs?
Some jobs do not provide much opportunity for advancement, but offer skills or experience you cannot easily get anywhere else.
What about salary and benefits?
5. What about salary and benefits?
Does the organization offer the following:
Adequate vacation time
Remember, you do not have to accept every offer you get. If the answers to these questions do not fit your needs, you might be better off continuing your search.