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Rediff.com  » Getahead » Offer Letter: 10 Things To Check

Offer Letter: 10 Things To Check

By VARUN SACHDEVA
April 04, 2023 12:59 IST
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Before signing an offer letter, you should be well aware of your designation with the duties and responsibilities assigned to you, advises Varun Sachdeva.

All illustrations: Dominic Xavier/Rediff.com
 

The last step in the hiring process is the most exciting part.

Isn't it?

Don't we love signing the offer letters after the final call?

But the moment of complete bliss can go horribly wrong if we don't pay attention to the much-weighted document.

Imagine the horror if the responsibilities written on the piece of paper are not aligned with the duties explained to you personally.

Well, that's just an example.

There could be a hundred other elements that can cease you from taking a final sigh of relief.

So before you take the happy step and sign the document with all the ecstasy, only to find that your happiness was mortal, let's look at all the critical details that need immediate attention.

1. Date and place of joining along with basic information

There are times when you need to relocate to the other state/city.

Basic job information, such as the date and the place of the job, needs your attention before you sign the document.

Moreover, you must have clarity of other general terms of employment like the notice period, probation period, and more.

2. Reporting system and duties

Before signing an offer letter, you should be well aware of your designation with the duties and responsibilities assigned to you.

It's important, as sometimes the responsibilities written differ from what was communicated before.

Moreover, they are also crucial in the future when you feel that your job is evolving from what was assigned to you in the beginning.

3. Salary structure and its components

Salary structure is one of the essential aspects of the offer letter.

Even after the salary discussion, there are times when your take-home salary differs.

If you feel that it is not what was discussed, you need to call the hiring manager, or else you will be left disappointed on the day of your first paycheck.

4. Bonuses (both guaranteed and discretionary)

Besides the salary structure, most companies also give bonuses, such as joining bonuses and other monetary incentives.

It's imperative to clarify the terms and conditions of both the guaranteed and discretionary bonuses because sometimes the language used to elaborate on them is unclear and creates confusion.

Asking HR beforehand is always a better idea.

5. Benefits

There are many benefits that the company gives you, including health & life insurance, reimbursements, free meals, and more.

Talking to HR and getting an idea about what these perks mean for you and your family is essential because sometimes there are hidden costs, which you realize after they get deducted from your real salary.

6. Leave Policy

Sometimes your induction doesn't shed light on the nature, type, and number of leaves you can take in a year.

To get an idea of how many leaves you can take, you must involve your HR.

There are times when you don't get earned leaves and privileged leaves before you complete the probationary period, which is not explained correctly in the offer letter.

Therefore, while reading the offer letter, pay attention to each leave assigned to you and ask HR for a better understanding.

7. Non-disclosure agreements

Confidentiality agreements are very common in the offer letter.

There is some sensitive and rather confidential information that you must not communicate with outsiders.

They can differ, from the company's reports to the customer database and other documents.

It's always better to read the agreement beforehand to prevent yourself from unintentionally communicating any confidential information.

8. Non-Solicit provision

A non-solicit agreement is a contract where you can't obtain the employer's stakeholders (clients, employees, customers, and more) till a specified time after you leave the company.

Reading this agreement saves you from unnecessary complications in the future.

9. Non-compete

The most neglected yet the most important provision of the offer letter is the non-compete clause that prevents you to work in a competitor's organization for a specific period of time.

However, understanding if the non-compete clause is only applicable to the direct competitors or the entire industry pioneers is very important.

There are times when you are not allowed to take an opportunity from any employer from the same industry, irrespective of them being a competitor.

Therefore, you must check these policies to ensure you don't face any issues after you leave the company.

10. Arbitration agreement

If you sign the offer letter that has an arbitration clause then that means you agreed not to take any legal action against your employer in court.

This often comes with a tricky provision and must not be overlooked.

An offer letter is a temptation you love after months of finding the right opportunity. But reading the document wisely and taking an understanding of each and every clause is very important.

The above-mentioned are some of the most important elements of an offer letter that you can't afford to overlook.


Varun Sachdeva is APAC Recruitment & Business Leader at NLB Services.
He has led workforce management and RPO initiatives by annually hiring over 10K professionals and managing operations worth up to $50 million.

Feature Presentation: Ashish Narsale/Rediff.com

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VARUN SACHDEVA