There are worse things than having to choose between multiple jobs -- namely, unemployment. Even in a tight job market, however, you have to consider certain specifics before committing yourself to a position. Dissatisfaction with your job not only decreases your productivity, it can also lead to burnout, stress, depression and other related health conditions. Even when the consequences aren't as dire, choosing the right job is still important to your professional development.
Salary may not be everything, but it’s still an important factor when you’re deciding on a job. Think about how much you need to make to pay your various expenses and determine if you require benefits such as health insurance or retirement options. For instance, you may be more willing to take lower pay if the job offers excellent benefits, or you may be comfortable with few or no benefits in exchange for better pay. Specifics such as employer match for retirement accounts or the percentage of insurance premiums the company covers are also significant considerations. Depending on the company’s policies, you might even be able to negotiate your compensation to fit your needs.
One of the most important considerations you need to contemplate is the type of work you want to do. Are you more interested in working with customers by making sales and solving problems or do you want to stay behind the scenes doing creative tasks, providing administrative support or developing business strategies? You also need to examine whether you work best under supervision or in teams, or if you thrive with more autonomy and individual projects.
Long-term vs. Short-term
If you like the freedom of moving around every few years or are in a temporary situation such as college, you may want to opt for a short-term job such as temping or seasonal work. Choose a job that has long-term potential, however, if you’re supporting a family or want to start establishing a career. Ultimately, deciding between these two options depends on the amount of job stability and security you require.
Determining the likelihood of moving up in the company may not be as important if you’re only interested in short-term employment, but it benefits career seekers to think about the possibility of job advancement. This often depends on the size of the company as well as its policy of promoting from within. You can find this information during job interviews or by asking current employees about the company’s advancement process. Even if the job itself doesn’t present any advancement opportunities, consider whether the position can boost your skills and experience to help you get higher-level jobs in the future.
Considering the specifics of how you’ll get to work can also help you narrow down your employment choices. If you use public transportation, you’ll have to make sure the job you choose is accessible, but if you rely on a car, you’ll have to think about fuel cost as well as wear and tear on your vehicle. No matter how you get to work, think about how long it will take you, how much it will cost and, if the commute is lengthy, whether the job or the pay is actually worth it.