What should you look for in a new job?

by | 17.03.23

When you are looking for a new job it’s important that the position you move onto is the right one for you. There are many more factors to consider than just salary, you need to find a role that suits both your personality and career goals. Here are a few things you need to consider before you say yes to a job offer:

What do you know about the Company’s history?

While no one can predict the future, understanding the Company’s history though can give you a glimpse into its stability, values ands culture. Find out as much you can about any potential employer by looking at their website, social media accounts and Company House records. Some important things to look for include how long the Company has been in business and does the Company regularly advertise for staff. The relative importance of each of these questions will depend on your situation, but if job security is important to you look for Companies who have been around for sometime and are not constantly recruiting as this probably means they have a high turnover of staff.

What are the Company’s values?

Work doesn’t feel like work when your career goals are aligned with the goals of your employer. When you research a potential employer compare your values with an employers mission statement, core values and business model. Many companies also support charitable organisations or partner with community groups. If you want to work for a Company which supports your personal values then make sure you check this out before considering a job offer.

What would the journey to work be like?

When considering the length of your workday, you must think about both your working hours and your commute time. Be realistic about how much time you are willing to spend going back and forth to work everyday. If your commute could mean being stuck in rush-hour traffic consider how that will affect your working hours and stress levels. The cost of your commute should also be a factor when comparing salaries from different companies. Fuel and parking costs can eat away at your take home pay.

What are the working hours?

As working hours can vary widely from Company to Company, you must know how a job’s work hours will fit into your life. Find out how many work hours are expected in a “normal” week and how extra work time is handled. You should also find out if bank holiday or weekend work is required or if you must be ‘on call’ when away from work.

Is the money right for you?

We would all like to earn as much money as possible but it’s important that you are realistic in your expectations. When you look for a job be sure to review your budget and understand how much you need to earn to pay your bills. Look at what you are currently earning and research the salary range for jobs you are considering so that you are in a good place to negotiate a starting salary. Remember though to keep it real, a 10% increase is wonderful if you can get it.

Are the benefits good?

Benefit packages are a real perk, particularly private health cover and a good Company pension scheme. Remember all benefits are in addition to your salary so they form a part of your employment package. You should also look at a Company’s holiday entitlement and sick policy. Don’t ignore smaller perks like employee discounts and discounted gym membership as both have value, so make sure you consider these as well.

Are you able to do the job?

To be successful in a job you need to find a position which aligns with your strengths. If you are most comfortable in a supportive role it may not be wise to step into a job where you are responsible for important decisions. Likewise, if you are used to working as part of a team you may not enjoy a job which requires you to work solo. Compare any job you are considering with your skills, experience and personal likes and dislikes in order to that you find a job which is the best fit for you.

Will you have the opportunity to grow with the Company?

Jobs that provide growth opportunities are especially important in the early part of your career. So it’s crucial that any position you consider allows you the opportunity to develop new skills and experience. Look for a job that ideally provides some sort of training programme if possible and a role which provides you with transferrable skill and that offers potential career opportunities.

Will you have a good work-life balance?

Achieving a work-life balance is a critical part of your overall health and well-being. Jobs that are very demanding for a short time may be exciting and highly rewarding, but you may find it helpful to balance periods of demanding hours with time off and nice holidays. Finding a balance between work and the rest of your life becomes especially important if you are a working parent or at the end of your career. Maybe if you are at the stage in your career when you want to slow down a job with flexible working hours could be the right solution for you.

Is the work environment right for you?

Because you will be spending a lot of time at work make sure that the work environment is a good fit for you. Consider whether you prefer working in a small Company or a large corporation. Check out the workplace and try to get a feel for the place. A place of work that excites you can increase your job satisfaction and overall happiness. When you attend an interview watch employees as they work to see if they look happy and the workplace seems pleasant. Be sure to check out how employees are dressed and if you are unsure ask about the Companies dress code.

So to summarise a job is not just about the money it’s about many, many other things. When you change jobs it’s important that every part of the position is right for you not just the wage packet!

Good Luck!

Angela Burton