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Jobs and Careers

What To Do If You Receive Multiple Job Offers (Or Hope To)

By ChiUniJobs 22 Jun 2018

I recently had a dilemma I never imagined I’d have to deal with, too many job offers. Okay, so it’s not the worst problem anyone’s ever had, but it was still a tricky situation. 
 
I had attended a few different interviews within the space of a week, and was desperately hoping that at least one of them would get back to me. 
 
When I told someone I had attended multiple interviews, they asked me ‘well, what will you do if you get an offer from more than one employer? Or if you hear back from one, before you know whether or not your preferred choice wants to hire you?’
 
This was something I hadn’t considered at all, but something that turned out to be worth thinking about. I spent a bit of time working out what I would do and what I would say if I heard back from a job that wasn’t my top choice (because I didn’t want to settle before I’d worked out all of my options). 
 
After a couple of days, I heard back from my second favourite opportunity, and they wanted to give me the job. It wasn’t a bad position to be in, and I was excited to have an offer, but still I wanted to give it a few more days to see if any other employers got back to me. 
 
Having planned what to do in this situation, I was able to buy myself a bit more time to give them a final decision. 
 
So if you’re in the same situation, with a few different potential opportunities, or even a few different job offers, first of all well done, but more importantly, here’s what to do!
 
Don’t accept a job unless you’re 100% sure about it
 
If you’ve attended a few different interviews, and you hear back from one before the others (which is almost definitely going to happen), don’t feel like you have to accept or decline it there or then. 
 
In fact, if you’re hoping to hear back from something else, it’s really important you don’t accept the job and then later withdraw from it if something better comes along. All this is going to do is make you look bad, and mess them around. 
 
It’s a small world, and you never know if you might later want to apply for a job with that company. If you’ve accepted a job and then pulled out of it, they might keep a record of this, which could affect any future applications you might submit. 
 
You also never know who employers are connected with. Businesses often have partnerships with other companies, and you don’t want bad news about you to spread through the business world. 
 
Ask for a few more days to consider the offer
 
So if you’re not 100% sure about a job, ask for a few more days to consider it when you’re offered the position. 
 
I was really nervous about doing this, I was panicking that they’d just withdraw the offer, but after talking to a few different people and asking advice, it seemed like this genuinely was the done thing. 
 
It turns out that employers often understand that people don’t just attend one interview anymore. Jobs can be hard to come by, so most people will be juggling a few different interviews and maybe even offers. So employers are often used to candidates wanting a bit more time to consider an offer. 
 
Be honest, but still enthusiastic
 
When you ask for a few more days to consider an offer, you might get asked if you need more time because you have other offers or interviews. There’s no sense in lying, so just be honest with them, they’ll appreciate it. 
 
You can tell employers that you have a few other opportunities you’d like to consider, and they should understand, because ultimately they want to find somebody that’s right for the role, just like you want to go for the job that you feel suits you best. 
 
That being said though, you should still be enthusiastic when you receive an offer. Don’t just jump right in to saying you’re not sure about it. Be excited and grateful about the opportunity, this way you’ll make sure you keep that opportunity open. 
 
Be aware that employers might negotiate a deadline
 
When you ask for a few more days, be aware that employers might negotiate how long you have to think over the offer. Especially if the start date is fairly soon, they’ll be keen to get a decision from you so that they can get all the paperwork sorted, or find a different candidate. 
 
So whilst it’s okay to ask for a few more days, you’ll need to be understanding and accepting of deadlines that employers may give you. 
 
If you’re nervous, don’t pick up straight away
 
This one might sound a little odd, but trust me, it will make conversations with potential employers a lot easier. 
 
I don’t know about you, but when I saw my phone ringing and realised it was a potential employer, I panicked a little. I wasn’t sure what to say, or whether they were calling to offer me the job, or tell me I was unsuccessful. So rather than answering the phone flustered and unsure, I let them leave a voicemail, and it was probably the best thing I could have done, because I had time to prepare a professional response. 
 
So if you see that a potential employer is calling you, and you feel a little flustered and nervous about it, it can be a good idea to let your phone ring out and let them leave a voicemail. 
 
This way, you’ll be able to prepare yourself for calling back, and plan what you might say, which should prevent you making any rushed or pressured decisions. 
 
If you receive a voicemail that indicates you’ve been offered a job, you can have a think over whether you’d like to accept, or if you’d like a few days to consider it. Either way, you can prepare your response so that when you call them back, you’re completely calm and collected. 
 
Just remember not to leave it too long before calling back. You still want to look enthusiastic. Call back before the end of the day, otherwise employers may assume you’re not interested in the position. 
 
So to sum up…
 
Receiving multiple job offers is an exciting, but also slightly tricky situation to be in. So if a few different opportunities present themselves to you, remember:
            
-You don’t have to pick up the phone straight away when an employer calls. It’s fine to let them leave a voicemail, and then get back to them when you’ve had a think about what you want to say!
 
-You don’t have to make any snap decisions; you can ask for more time to consider an offer. 
 
-Be enthusiastic! Even if you’re not 100% sure about the job offer, be enthusiastic and excited. You may end up deciding you want that job, and the last thing you want is to upset your employer before you’ve even started!
 
-Give employers a decision within the set deadline. If you don’t call back before the deadline is up, they will likely offer the job to someone else. 
 

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