The interview process is over and now you have to figure out how to respond to a job offer. This can be difficult, especially when deciding on how to accept one job offer and decline another.
The truth is that even without multiple job offers, this stage of the job hunting process can be headache inducing for a lot of us.
On one hand, you want to give yourself a pat in the back for a job well done. While on the other hand, you still want to take your time to reassess your options.
Regardless of what position you find yourself in, we’ve prepared a quick guide with some tips and tricks, along with a few job acceptance email examples that will help you accept a job offer like a pro.
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Job offer process
After the job interview, you should receive an official offer from your potential employer.
This offer can come in various forms, such a phone call, email or even a letter. If it comes in as a call, thank the recruiter and ask if they can send you a written document as well, so that you can review it properly.
Remember, it’s only official if it’s written down.
The official document should contain what’s expected of you in your new role, what your salary will be, as well as your starting date and benefits.
Also, during this stage you can still negotiate your salary and benefits with your employer. However, try not to play hard-ball unless you’re willing to walk away from the offer.
Basically, don’t negotiate simply for the sake of negotiating, especially if they made an offer you know is good.
How to respond to a job offer
Now, responding to a job offer is not synonymous with accepting a job offer.
You might have a few other job interviews pending and perhaps one of them with a company that’s more to your liking.
Having said that, here's how to respond to a job opportunity email:
On the other hand, if you really need more time to consider the job offer due to other job offers, you might have to handle this part with some tact.
Something along these lines might work better for you:
Make sure to only set a date if you’re able to commit to it.
Try not to stress too much about it, as nothing has been finalized yet.
Usually at this stage HR is still likely to take a few days to prepare the formal offer and will probably give you a few days to consider, as you still need to review the salary, benefits, etc.
How to accept a job offer like a pro
By this stage you should have already sent an early response to the job offer. Now it's time to finalize it with a formal acceptance.
Here's 5 steps that can help you decide what to say when accepting a job offer:
1. Communicate expectations
As soon as you receive a job offer, it's advised to communicate your expectations. Let them know you've received the offer and by when they'll receive your response.
2. Re-examine the job offer
It's important that you review the job offer thoroughly, especially if you have to compare it to a competing job offer. It's a huge decision and going over it with someone you know and trust can be of great help.
3. Plan your response
Depending on how you received your job offer, your response will differ. If for example you got an official job offer on a physical letter then it's advised to submit your acceptance letter physically. Whether it's sent to you via email or on a physical letter, always send an email as-well, so that the employer gets your response sooner.
4. Draft your response
Once you've gone over the job offer a few times, it's time to start drafting your response. A good rule of thumb for those wondering how to begin a job offer response is to pay attention to the employer's communication and follow their cadence. More information on this topic on the chapter below, What is a job acceptance letter.
5. Proofread your response
Like everything else throughout your job hunting process, it's important to double check your response for mistakes. Treat it the same way you did when writing your resume and cover letter. If you can, have a friend or two proofread your response. Also, if you're going to accept the job offer via phone or video call, try to practice your response a few times, treat it similar to having a virtual job interview.
Job offer acceptance letter (+5 samples)
What is an acceptance letter
An acceptance letter is a great way to display your professionalism from the start.
Usually a good acceptance letter expresses your enthusiasm for your new role and restates information such as your start date, salary and benefits, which can help in eliminating confusion.
Normally, job offer acceptance letters and job offer acceptance emails are kept brief.
However, regardless of length there’s an acceptance letter format you can use that will help you accept a job offer like a pro.
Here’s what to include:
- Clear subject line
- Correct recipient
- Expression of gratitude
- Terms and conditions (salary, job title and benefits)
- Formal job acceptance
- Clarification of your start date
- Your signature
With this in mind, here are 5 job offer acceptance letter examples that will teach you how to write an acceptance letter like a professional:
Formal acceptance letter sample
Like a job offer, an acceptance is not official until it's written down and there is no better way to that than with a formal acceptance letter.
Here's a a formal acceptance letter sample that can help you jumpstart your career on the right track.
Acceptance letter with conditions sample
Sometimes, although you want to accept a job offer right away, you might still have a few things pending that need to be sorted out. Such as, a wedding that was planed months in advance, a medical treatment you need to get done, or perhaps you need to set some conditions regarding your vacation time.
In such a case, it's important to set these things straight from the begging and an acceptance letter with conditions is the way to go, such as the following example.
Thank you acceptance letter sample
Showing gratitude can take you a long way, as a thank you acceptance letter can help you set a foundation for a good relationship with your new employer. A short and concise letter such as the thank you acceptance letter sample below can do you wonders.
Promotion acceptance letter sample
Sending a promotion acceptance letter sample to an employer can help reinforce to him or her that they have made the right choice in promoting you to your new role. Here's a short promotional acceptance letter example you can use to start your new position on the right foot.
Internship acceptance letter sample
As an intern, you want to start building bridges from the get-go and an internship acceptance letter is a good way to start. You can use the following internship acceptance letter example to start laying down the foundation that will eventually land you your dream career.
How to accept a job offer via email
What is an acceptance email
Nowadays, most job offers will be sent to you as a job acceptance email. With job offers via a physical letter or a phone call becoming less frequent.
Because of that, it’s important that you know how to write an acceptance email.
Remember, even if you get the rare physical job offer via a physical letter or via phone, you should always accompany it with a job acceptance email as-well — for sake of brevity.
With that said, with the exception of having a few extra options, such as forwarding to multiple recipients at the same time, writing an acceptance email should follow the same rules as an acceptance letter.
Here's an example of how a job acceptance email should look like:
Job offer acceptance email sample
How to accept a job offer over the phone
Some companies like to personally hand out job offers via phone, especially those that are sales related.
If this is your case, learning what to say when offered a job over the phone is really important, this is because there’s less time to come up with a response then other methods such as an email or a physical letter.
With that in mind, here’s how to prepare so that you know what to say when accepting a job over the phone:
- Prepare a written acceptance response. Since you’re going to have to do this anyways, doing it before a call can be a good way to practice your response.
- Be polite.
- Show enthusiasm: Not all jobs are created equal, but showing a bit of excitement can go along ways.
- Request a deadline for your response.You might want to have in mind when you can respond, as they are likely to ask you when they can expect your response.
- Conclude with a thank you.
Now, you don’t have to prepare a whole lecture. Something as simple as the following can work wonders:
The rest of the conversation should fall in line afterwards, especially if you practiced a time or two. Just stay calm, polite and professional and you should be able to ace your job acceptance response.
How to decline a job offer
There are multiple reasons to decline a job offer, the pay is not what you expected, the benefits are sub par, little vacation time, or better competing offers.
Regardless of the reason, you should still decline a job offer with tact. It’s never good to burn bridges.
Here’s a few simple steps you can take when declining a job offer.
- Be sure: The fact that the salary is not up to your standards doesn't mean it’s a done deal, you can still attempt to negotiate for a higher wage.
- State a reason: A brief explanation is standard, as you don’t want to appear rude.
- Be polite: Thank them for the opportunity and time.
- Don’t waste time: Don’t keep them waiting, it might be awkward but it's the right thing to do.
- Remain in contact: If you’re able to, ask if you can remain in contact with them. Networking with them can help at a future time.
In the end, a simple job offer decline can look something along these lines:
For more information on how to decline a job offer.
FAQ: How to accept a job offer
- Should I accept a job offer right away?
Although you should always respond to an employer in a timely manner, as to it’s usually acceptable to take 1-2 business days to go over a job offer. However, there are times when an employer might ask to respond as soon as possible, in this case you can send an email asking politely if you can have more time to review the terms.
- How to delay accepting a job offer?
Whether you need time to go over the job offer or perhaps wait on another company to reply. There are a few ways to delay accepting a job offer, such as:
- Asking by when they need your response;
- If verbal offer, ask for a written offer;
- Tell them you’re still interested but want to consider;
- Simply ask for additional time.
Also, when wondering how to ask for more time to think about a job offer it’s important to be polite and respond in a timely manner.
- How to negotiate a job offer?
When negotiating a job offer, something as simple as, “Well I was hoping for an offer of $X“, can get you great results. Just make sure that X is a bit above your ideal salary, but not too high that you’ll scare them away.
- How to tell a company you accepted another job offer?
Letting a company know you’ve accepted another job can be difficult and should be done thoughtfully. Here are the steps to take when responding:
1. Be honest.
2. State the reason.
3. Be polite.
4. Show appreciation.
5. Say thank you.