See All Jobs

How to respond to a job offer

job offer

It may seem like finally receiving that job offer is the end of your recruitment journey. And, congratulations! It is great to get through all the applications and interviews. But it is also important to respond to your job offer in the correct way. Rather than hurriedly agreeing to whatever they are proposing, take a moment to breathe and check the terms and conditions. Whether you can’t wait to get started, or want to politely decline, you need to continue to make the right impression. At CareerWise, we are experts in everything to do with recruitment. Here is our guide on how to respond to your job offer. 

Receiving an offer

A job offer will often come over the phone first, to be followed up by something in writing. Feel free to ask them to put their offer in writing when you get that call. Try and remember, you are under no obligation to say yes straight away. Any experienced recruiter will expect you to want some time to consider things carefully. So when you receive the call, thank them, and tell them you will let them know your decision very soon. There is no better time to negotiate the terms of your employment than before you have agreed to their offer. Once you sign on the dotted line you are unlikely to be able to change the terms of your employment. 


Deciding on your response 

A full time job is a big commitment, so you should consider many things when making your final decision. Ask yourself if the job offer is all you’d hoped for – in terms of pay, but also holidays, pensions, and other benefits. If it isn’t, does something else compensate – perhaps you would be working in a field you are particularly interested in, or feel you would have a chance to make a great network for the future. Finally, consider the role in the context of your home life. How do things such as commute and working hours affect how you feel about it? 



Now is your best chance to negotiate the terms of this job. Once you have acknowledged the offer, and have considered the terms, you could put in a counter-offer and see what they say. Perhaps you just can’t justify the commute without slightly more pay to cover the travel; or perhaps you need them to be flexible on working hours so you can fulfil a family commitment. Whatever is holding you back from accepting, now is the time to approach your prospective employer and tell them what you need to make it work. 


Response time

Although you should take time to consider your position carefully, nonetheless be sure to reply to the job offer within a reasonable time frame. Three working days could be a ballpark time allowance, but if you are unsure, check when your prospective employer needs a response by. You should acknowledge the offer straight away, thank them for it, and make clear when you will give them your final decision. Establishing clear and regular communication from the outset is vital to fostering any good relationship.


Accepting an offer

Having made your big decision, accepting can be swift and simple. Make sure that your email of acceptance contains a clear message that you accept the job offer. Communicate your excitement at the prospect of the job, and be sure to maintain your professionalism. Confirm your agreed-upon job title and start date. You will likely need to sign a formal contract once you have accepted the offer, so you can keep this initial acceptance email short and sweet. 


Declining an offer 

Finding the right way to decline an offer can be a little more tricky. It is best to stay formal and to the point. Thank them for the offer and make it clear that you are appreciative. It is optional whether you mention your reasons for not taking their job; you certainly don’t have to divulge personal details. Perhaps tell them that you have “decided to take a different direction”. There is no need to burn bridges by telling them how much you disliked the prospective colleague who interviewed you! In fact, it makes much more sense to conclude your message by saying that you have enjoyed meeting them and that you’d like to keep in touch, or perhaps work together in the future. It is always a good idea to leave your options open. 


Are you looking for a job in Ireland? 

CareerWise is Ireland’s leading specialist recruitment firm, based in Cork, Shannon, Galway, Mayo and Dublin and we can help you to find your ideal new job in Ireland. Many of our roles feature a hybrid element. We specialise in the Engineering, Supply Chain, Science/Pharma, IT and Accounting industries in Ireland, and we look forward to working with you.

Contact us online now or call us on +353 (0) 21 206 1900 to arrange a consultation.


Upload Your CV

Upload your CV to apply for as many jobs as you like.

upload your CV

Send Me Job Alerts

Stay up to date with the latest jobs entered onto our system, emailed to your inbox.

Cork Office

CareerWise Recruitment. EastGate Village, EastGate, Little Island, Cork.

Phone: +353 (0) 21 206 1900