Got a job offer? Now what?

Disclaimer: I do not claim to be an expert on this matter.

This actually came about from a conversation I had with a friend. A mutual friend had just received a job offer and was mulling over taking the offer because it is substantially more than what she is earning now. The main con of this is that it’s quite a distance from her home (going to her current workplace takes only about 15-20 mins while the new place would take at least one hour by public transport as she does not have a driver’s license).

She’s still not quite sure whether to switch jobs, because the distance is a factor, not to mention that the company has already warned her that she might actually have to stay back on weekends and do overtime. It would also cut deeply into one of her hobbies.

So here’s my checklist. Sorry for the rambling:


  • How long is your probation?
    • Probation is generally 3-6 months. Should yours last longer, you may want to ask why.
    • Is there an open door policy? If you run into any problems, who do you refer to?
  • What benefits will you receive/expect while under probation?
    • Mentoring benefits- Will you get a mentor? Or will you be given someone to shadow as you learn your way around?
    • Will you get sick/compassionate leave?
    • Can you claim your MC from the company?
    • Will you get a transportation allowance/living allowance?
  • What will you NOT receive during your probation?
  • Should you choose to quit, how much notice do you have to give?
  • EPF Benefits- considering the reduction of EPF contributions from 13% to 8%, do you have the option of reverting back to the old rate instead of the new? 
  • What’s your job scope?

Confirmed Staff

  • How many days off?
  • Will your overtime benefits be translated into days off and/or extra income?
  • Dos and Don’ts of the workplace: What can you/can’t do?
  • Internet access rules and ethics
    • Online portfolio- Can you post your works online?
    • Are there any restrictions regarding blogs/journals, etc?
  • Medical insurance?
  • Increments/performance reviews
  • Training benefits
    • Does the company encourage you to better yourself? Will they foot the bill for personal training?
  • Culture of the workplace
  • Touch wood: Retrenchment benefits?

Other misc:

  • Staff ages- How old/young they are roughly?
  • Non-work get-togethers- Does the company encourage people to get together outside of work?

That’s all I can think of. Feel free to suggest others if you have suggestions. Bear in mind, these are questions you should ask your prospective NEXT employer, not your current one.