7 things you should negotiate before saying yes to your next job

 ·26 Feb 2016

After going through the vetting process for a new job, you’d be tempted to just shout yes when it’s offered to you – but there are a few things you should consider before shaking on the offer.

According to a South African recruitment expert, there’s nothing wrong with taking a step back to consider the terms of your employment – especially when presented with all the terms and conditions in an employment contract.

When a company wants to hire you and expects you to sign on the dotted line at the bottom of a contract, there are aspects of the business that are perfectly reasonable to talk about – and even negotiate.

“The first step in accepting a job is to discuss the offer with your partner or spouse (if you have one). A second opinion and agreement by your spouse will help to confirm your thoughts and plans,” our expert said.

“It is important to then ask for a copy of your Employment Contract. This is the perfect guideline on the job you are considering.”

Our specialist then says you need to read through the contract and take note of the following seven things – which can sometimes be negotiated, depening on the company:

1. The company’s working hours & overtime policy

“Ensuring you will be able to make it to the office through all that traffic and not having to run out the door by the end of the day. Flexi hours may also apply; however, it may only be in certain companies and sometimes only after your probation period.”

2. Leave

“Ensure you know all about compulsory leave cycles, closing times, and the exact leave days available at this specific company. It is important to discuss any planned holiday arrangements and whether it will be unpaid/pro-rata. Maternity and Study Leave are also important factors to consider.”

3. Get a sample payslip

“This is a vital piece of information that can greatly affect your overall cost to company package. Ask for a sample payslip and ensure you get detailed information on Bonuses, Incentive plans, commission, 13th cheques and share options.”

4. The benefits you can expect

“These include Medical Aid, Pension/ Provident fund, and travel/cell phone allowances. Companies vary in the percentage of contributions made on the candidate’s behalf and the percentage you contribute.”

5. What training you will get

“It is best practice to find out what type of training will be involved when starting, and the training that will be provided on a continuous basis.”

6. Key Performance Areas 

“Ask for the ten most important responsibilities listed within your job description and the outcomes expected. It is extremely important that you fully understand what will be needed of you and possible challenges you may face.”

7. Performance Review discussions

“Find out the frequency of these discussions and the linked incentives or performance based bonuses.”

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