How to handle your counter-offer


There’s no denying that securing a new job is a long and tiring process! You spend hours trawling the job boards, tailoring your CV and cover letters to attend interview after interview. Not to mention the hours researching the company, preparing presentations, working your hardest to impress your new employer. You are finally offered that all important job, but when handing your resignation in your employer hits you with a counter-offer. While this may seem like an appealing offer you have to consider whether it is right for you.

Here is advice on How to handle your counter-offer:

Question why

The first thing you need to do when faced with the counter-offer is question why they are doing this. Often employers are avoiding recruitment costs and the effort of having to train new staff by inflating your salary slightly. If the only reason you were looking for a new role was financial then chances are you would have asked for a pay rise before looking elsewhere. You spend too much of your time and effort in work to feel undervalued so this has to be a deciding factor if you consider staying. The fact that you weren’t offered a pay rise / promotion on merit alone should set off alarm bells. After all you don’t want to have to threaten to leave every time you deserve a promotion.

What will change if you stay

If you decide to accept a counter-offer it may not be just your pay packet that changes. Attitudes towards you from management may change after knowing you were looking for a new role elsewhere. All of a sudden people may not believe you are taking time off for doctor’s appointments and question what you are doing. Not only can your manager’s trust for you disappear, but some colleagues may resent you for negotiating a better deal than they have and so staying put can all of a sudden shift into a new dynamic.

Remember your reasons for leaving

Like I said, the decision to change job is often down to more than just salary. You may be frustrated with the role itself or be looking for a new opportunity to further your career. Whatever the reason is keep it clear in your mind. It is easy to be swayed by a quick pay rise to then find yourself still unhappy 6 months down the line, but without the job offer you have worked so hard to get.

Don’t burn bridges

You have worked really hard to impress your new employer, so the last thing you want to do is burn any future bridges with them. If you stay in your current role then realise down the line that you still want to leave, then the chances of your new employer considering you are extremely low. Not only this, but you may develop a bad reputation with the recruitment agency used and potentially jeopardise success with future job roles.

Think long and hard about what you want and make the commitment, whether it is to stay where you are or to move onto a new opportunity.

The reality usually is that the reasons you wanted to leave will outweigh the incentives your current employer will throw at you to try and get you to stay. Make sure you consider the above points before making your decision and ensure everything promised is signed and in writing before letting anyone down.

Sophie Heaton (Digital Campaign Manager)

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