CAREER EXPERT feat Chris Mead | Issue 63 of HEADHUNT


Dear Chris,

I have recently entered the jobs market for the first time in several years, and I’m nervous about accepting or rejecting potential offers. I’ve run  into trouble in the past at this stage of the recruitment process, and I wonder what the best way is to accept or reject an offer?


Dear Bansri,

Thank you for your letter and a very interesting question. In my experience, the main reason that people applying for executive jobs run into trouble at offer stage is because  they are unhappy with one or more aspects of the offer and are uncertain how to proceed.

A job offer is typically made verbally before a formal written offer is received. If you are unhappy with any aspect of the offer, this is the best  time to negotiate. If you need to gather your thoughts, ask for a day to consider the offer. You should not verbally agree to an offer and then turn  around and ask to negotiate a certain aspect of the role once you have received the contract.

The best piece of advice I can give you is to keep the lines of communication open. If an offer is made, and you have an issue with one aspect of  it, such as the salary, your best course of action is to tell your recruiter that you are very interested in the position, but that you would like to negotiate. Discuss openly and professionally with your recruiter your opinion and desired outcome, and listen to their advice. Remember, we are  experts in recruiting and have the professional knowhow to advise you on current market trends. If required, we can negotiate on your behalf  with the employer, without the risk of jeopardising the offer.

Once you have resolved any issues and made your decision, you should accept or reject the offer in a timely and professional manner. Be  honest as to why or why not you are accepting an offer. If you are accepting the role, it is common practice in most industries, be it in accountant jobs or in media jobs, to do so verbally before a formal  offer of employment is received and signed.

Once you receive your written offer, confirm the details match those discussed. You should then withdraw any other job applications previously  made. Keep a copy of the written offer, and resign from your current role.

Good luck with your job search.

Chris Mead
General Manager
HAYS Singapore

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