Artwork by: Kate October
Getting a job offer is great, but what if you’re lucky enough to get multiple job offers at the same time? Here’s what you can do to manage this type of situation.
For almost all job applicants out there, receiving multiple job offers is akin to finding the holy grail. After all, who wouldn’t want to have several employment options to choose from? However, once the initial excitement wanes, you might find yourself wondering how to handle multiple job offers at the same time.
In this blog post, we’ll try to answer the following questions:
How do I juggle a job offer while I wait for another one?
What happens if I accept a job and then get a better offer?
The first step toward handling multiple job offers is to remain calm and don’t say yes to the first offer you get. You’ll want to learn as much as possible about each job offer before making up your mind. At the same time, you wouldn’t want to turn away any of the employers or make them feel like you don’t value their offer. Here are a few things you need to do.
As soon as you receive your first job offer, show your excitement and thank the hiring manager for selecting you. However, don’t accept the offer there and then. Ask the employer for some time to think about the offer or the date by which they expect you to respond to the offer.
For example, you can say, “Thank you for accepting my application. The opportunity looks amazing, and I believe it's the right fit for me. If you don’t mind me asking, when do you need to know my official decision? I can get back to you by [date and day] if that works for you.”
If you’ve received multiple job offers at once and they have the same deadline for acceptance or rejection, your task should be to obtain all relevant information about each job before the deadline.
Make sure you’re clear about the job role and responsibilities, compensation package, working arrangements, growth and incentive plans, and other perks and benefits. If you have any questions about the job offer, reach out to the employer and clarify your concerns with them.
Now that you have some time on your hands, make a list of the pros and cons for each job. At the same time, prepare a list of things that are most important to you and see which job ticks all the boxes. For example, if remote working, flexible working hours, and a high salary are three of the most important things you need, see which job is offering all three options.
If time is of the essence, you can have a conversation with the employer or hiring manager and mention that you have another offer on the table. There is a risk that the employer will be put off, and they will consider rescinding the offer. However, you can handle this conversation delicately.
Here’s a script you can use if you want to let your employer know about another job offer you have received.
“Thank you for extending me the opportunity to work at your organization. Given my past experience and skills, I believe I would be a valuable addition to your team. I have received a similar offer from another organization for a similar role. Though I’m more inclined toward accepting your role, I would feel more comfortable if I had the chance to compare the two job offers and then make my final decision. Would it be okay if I provide my final response to your offer by [date and day]?”
If you’re unsure about the job offer you should accept, think about your long-term goals. Where do you see yourself in five years? Which of these organizations is most suited to help you get there? Which organization is a good cultural fit and offers an abundance of learning and growth opportunities?
Some of the things you need to think about include financial and non-financial incentives, work culture, working arrangement (in-office, remote, or hybrid), commuting time (if applicable), the direction the company is heading toward, flexibility, and the size of the organization.
If you’ve decided to decline a job offer because you’ve been offered a better employment opportunity at another organization, you will need to communicate your decision to the hiring manager for the first job. It’s best to let the hiring manager know as soon as possible so that they can start looking for another candidate.
Here’s a sample script you can use to reject a job offer in favor of another one.
Dear [Name of hiring manager],
Thank you for considering my application for [job title] and [company name]. I deeply appreciate the offer and the interest your organization has shown in my competence and capabilities.
After much consideration, I have decided to accept another job opportunity that closely aligns with my long-term career goals and provides me with a better opportunity to focus on my skills in [list a few relevant skills].
Again, I want to express my sincere gratitude for the interview and job offer. I wish you and [company name] all the best in finding the right candidate for the job.
You might encounter a situation where you accept a job offer, and then a better job offer comes your way. While that’s a good thing, you will need to think and weigh your options carefully instead of jumping ship the first chance to get. Here are a few things you can do in this instance.
Since you’ve already signed an employment agreement, read it carefully once again. Look for any specific clauses on the consequences of leaving the organization, especially if the company has provided you with a signing bonus, relocation allowance, or other perks.
If you notice any clauses within your agreement that make it difficult for you to leave the organization, you may need to talk to your supervisor or hiring manager or consult with a legal expert.
Almost every organization out there has a probation period for new hires, which can range from a few weeks to a couple of months. The probation period is an opportunity for the organization to assess your quality of work and determine whether you’re a good cultural fit. It’s also an opportunity for you to assess whether the company is meeting your expectations.
Typically, you can leave the organization during your probationary period without any consequences. However, it would be good to review your employment agreement and talk to your supervisors before making any decision.
Since you’ve already made up your mind to switch employment, it’s a good idea to talk to your supervisor and the hiring manager. Let them know that you have been offered a better employment opportunity at another organization.
Maintain a polite and professional tone and ask them for their advice on what they think you should do. This way, your supervisor would be able to provide you with a more truthful and objective answer. Your existing employer might even consider revising your job offer to match the new job offer you’ve received.
If you’ve received multiple job offers at the same time, don’t panic. Find out as much as you can about each job and then determine which employment opportunity is most likely to meet your long-term professional goals.
If you’ve accepted a job offer and you receive a better job offer from another organization, you can talk to your supervisor and determine whether it’s possible for you to switch to the other employer.
In any case, make sure to read your employment agreement carefully and look for any clauses that prohibit you from switching jobs during the probationary period.
Asad's writing expertise lies in the fields of HR and marketing—putting him in the unique position of understanding the job-search process: both from the side of the applicant, and the side of the hiring managers. With this valuable blend of perspectives, he’s able to help his clients position themselves as top candidates for their desired roles.