5 Essential Benefits to Discuss Before Accepting the Job
Searching for a new job can be an incredibly stressful experience. After spending months filling out tedious applications and nervously waiting for calls that never come, many people have a strong urge to immediately accept the first offer they receive. Salary and health benefits will always dominate any negotiation, but don’t forget to ask about other important benefits as well. Here are five of the more important, yet often forgotten, benefits you should inquire about.
1. Professional Development. Everyone wants to grow and be challenged in their career. A great way to do that and receive an amazing perk in the process is by asking about leadership development programs or tuition reimbursement. “If you’re early in your career, professional development and training are key. Not all companies offer training programs, but they can be a real asset to you,” says Vicki Prasch, Relocation Consultant at IMPACT Group. Not only are you bettering yourself, but also this request signals to your potential manager that you’re conscientious about doing well and growing professionally. You’ll find many companies are willing to offer training when it is viewed as a direct investment in retaining you as an employee. Leadership development programs also keep you engaged and increase your productivity.
2. Relocation Assistance. If you are interviewing with a large company that has a presence outside of one city, state or country, make sure you ask how they handle relocation. Many organizations will work with a Relocation Management Company to help you pack up and sell your house, but don’t forget to inquire about other forms of assistance. If your partner or spouse works, will they be able to find a job in your new city? Will your family need assistance getting acclimated to their new surroundings? If your answer is yes to either of these questions, ask about partner job search and family acclimation support.
3. Work-Life Balance. Don’t underestimate the value benefits like telecommuting, flex time, and parental leave bring to the table. While they may not be your biggest concern at the moment, these benefits can mean the difference between keeping a job and leaving it later in your career. Work-life balance is a trend that’s here to stay, and more companies are adjusting their policies to allow their employees more freedom. Ask your prospective employer about their views and policies. These conversations can be very revealing about the company’s attitudes toward it’s employees and can help you make your final decision.
4. Vacation Time. Paid time off (PTO) is often looped into the work-life balance discussion, but it really needs to be a conversation of it’s own. There are a lot of variables to consider besides the number of days you get a year. Find out if there is a difference between sick days and vacation days. Learn if vacation time is given to you immediately at your start date or if it is accrued. Ask which holidays are recognized by the company and if you’re granted pay for those days. Lastly, find out if your time rolls over at the end of the year. You don’t want to lose it.
5. Equipment and Software. Maybe you’ve never thought to ask what type of office equipment is standard, what operating system your new computer runs on, or what programs you will use regularly, but this equipment and software you will be working with on an everyday basis. Don’t be afraid to ask these types of questions. You’ll show that you have genuine interest in the position and are already mapping out ways to be the most productive in your new role. If you are particularly savvy with a program or system that will be of use in your new position, now is the time to show off that expertise. Plus, you’ll have a better idea of how much time it will take you to be up and running. If you’ve used Outlook your entire career and the potential employer uses Gmail, now is the time to find that out so you can be prepared.
Remember, now is the time to ask questions and make sure this opportunity is right for you. Take advantage of any chance you get to better your compensation package and inquire about the topics above to ensure your next career transition is a long and prosperous one.