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Job Offers: Managing Deadlines

Is it OK to Renege on a Job Offer?

Finding a job is not easy. It can be hard to know when the right job offer comes around, especially since companies are working on different timelines. You might receive an offer for one company, knowing that you have final interviews with another company in two weeks. Should you accept an offer as soon as it comes in and keep interviewing? Should you just say "yes" and see if anything better comes along?

The answer to both those questions is an emphatic "no". Accepting a job, only to turn it down later is called reneging. While this might seem harmless, there are far reaching implications of these decisions to the student, the employer, and the university.

1. Poor professional reputation.

Even if a company does not keep a physical list, the recruiter will likely remember a candidate that has reneged. The recruiter would have worked with you and your name … 

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Requesting a Deadline Extension

You just received a job offer from a company. They were a good company, however, you have an interview coming up with another employer. You want to interview to see which position is the best fit for you, but you need to respond to your original offer before the interview. How do you approach the situation?

Managing offer deadlines can be a tricky part of the search process and requesting a deadline extension might be an option. Make sure you understand when you are likely to hear back from other companies, so you have a firm timeline for how long you will need. While it may seem impossible to navigate without hurting your chances with a company, there are some steps to help you with the process.

1. Call the person who issued your offer well in advance of your deadline. Calling is usually better than emailing in this situation … 

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Reneging Part II: How Can I Avoid It?

So now that we’ve covered the downsides of reneging, let’s discuss strategies for prevention.  The key to avoiding a reneging situation is to not accept an offer without carefully thinking it through.  Consider doing the following:

  1. Avoid giving an immediate answer.  Avoid making a decision on the spot.  When the company representative calls with the happy news that they are extending an offer to you, you should thank them, express interest/excitement about the opportunity, and state that you look forward to receiving the formal offer in writing.  You should also ask them what the timeframe by which you need to decide is—so that you know the span of time you are working with. 
  2. Determine if you have enough time to decide.  Is the amount of time the employer allotted your decision making process adequate for you?  Do you want to have ECS review your … 
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Reneging Part I: What’s the Big Deal?

Searching for a job can be hard work.  Once you reach the stage where the offer(s) arrive, you figure “this will be smooth sailing!”  You may think:  “All of my efforts have paid off, and now I can just sit back, relax, and…wait a minute.  I am still waiting on several companies that I interviewed with—and really liked—I’m not sure if I’m ready to commit yet.  Or—what if I don’t get any other offers?  Can I just say “yes” to the offer and change my mind later if something better comes along?” 

Unfortunately, you cannot “just say yes” and then change your mind later.  The practice of accepting a job and then turning it down for another opportunity is called “reneging”—such a practice is highly unethical and not sanctioned by Engineering Career Services.  When you register with ECS, you agree to our policies, one … 

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Job offer acceptance deadlines - why they're there and how to manage them

Congratulations! - You've received your first job offer and, like most offers of employment, it probably has a deadline attached. When making an offer, most employers will give candidates a date by which they must either accept or decline the offer. While the date you've been given can sometimes seem like it's been chosen at random, there are many different reasons for offer expiration dates and usually the employer has given careful consideration to each one.

Top Reasons for Offer Deadlines -

  • Recruiters have a limited number of positions to fill and you were selected to be in their first round of offers. At the same time, they realize that some of their top choices will accept offers from other companies leaving them with positions that still need to be filled - so they need to know early on if you're not interested while there is still time to make … 
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