Job Offers


You passed the examinations and interviews with flying colors. Congratulations! It’s finally time for the employment offer.

The majority of contact centers and businesses offer work via a job offer letter. A job offer letter will include the following in its most basic form:

  • Job title or position offered.
  • Salary, benefits, and perks offered.
  • Instructions to accept or decline the job offer.

A job offer is essential. At this moment, a recruiter switches from evaluator to salesperson. A job offer is essential. At this moment, a recruiter switches from evaluator to salesperson. While it is true that you need the job, it is also true that as a candidate, you must examine many factors such as the basic pay, benefits, the job itself, the schedule, the corporate culture, and a variety of other factors that may turn you off and cause you to decline the offer.

To give you the offer, the recruiter will lead you to a quiet room, ask you to read the job offer letter, then leave you for a few minutes. When he returns, he will allow you to ask questions; what he does not tell you is that, depending on your experience, the offer may be negotiable.

In my years of recruitment, I have never offered to negotiate an offer (we were never allowed to mention it), and I can rarely count the incidents when an applicant would attempt to negotiate, either they accept or decline it. If the applicant is highly qualified, we can raise the basic salary value to a plus three to four thousand pesos – now that is a big difference!

So why am I sharing this? Here at work, I have two colleagues who keep on complaining about how low their basic pay is, and admittedly, it’s because they did not attempt to negotiate out of modesty. A few months down the road, they are unhappy because their colleagues with shorter call center tenure than they are, are better paid. Always attempt to negotiate unless you are a first-timer and are not sure of your actual value yet.

Tip: only attempt a negotiation if you are a tenured and highly skilled call center employee.

If you want to think about the offer, you will have to note the salient points (you will not be allowed to bring the offer letter home). Also, this is the perfect time to ask HR, payroll, benefits, perks, schedule, required documentation, and other pre-employment questions.

Job offers and the salary specified in the letter are ALWAYS CONFIDENTIAL; do not discuss it with other candidates as much as possible – this is where they test your integrity. Allow the recruiter to discuss the compensation offer with qualified candidates when their time comes around.

Because a job offer is not a contract, it is never legally binding. Just because you accepted a job offer does not imply you must stop looking for work. And, because it is not a contract, you cannot hold the company liable if the items offered in the letter are not delivered. A classic example would be a company that offers a free post-paid mobile phone line but then changes its policy because the company’s income no longer allows for the benefit.

If a candidate who has already signed the job offer letter changes his mind, he should contact the recruiter and inform him of the change in choice; this will allow the recruiter to offer the job to other competent individuals.

Finally, although some offers may be negotiable, do not use the higher offer you received from a company as your bargaining chip – you are not in Divisoria, and the “bakit sa kabila mas mataas ang offer?” will not work here. The best bargaining chip is your tenure, experience, skills, and competencies.

If you have questions related to the post above, please don’t hesitate to leave a comment.

26 thoughts on “Job Offers

  1. HI CaityJ. I’ve ben a tough situation like that – choosing between two job offers. I hope when you say “great opportunities”, you are not talking about the basic pay? Looking merely at the basic pay is an immature way of assessing the merits of a “career” (note: I didn’t say “job”, given yon eh). I wrote an article on how I decide on a job offer. You can read about it here.

    Hope this helps.

    Se7en

  2. They gave me 2 papers po kc, the JO and EC at the same time. Di pa naman ako nakapagbigay ng requirements but I already signed both. As long as I haven’t started and haven’t submitted the requirements, i believe i won’t have to reimburse them (except the medical fee). Tama po ba? I wish i didn’t have to choose though, both opportunities are good and i had a hard time deciding. Thank you po again for helping me.

  3. Hi CaityJ. I’m surprised that your job offer has a bond. That is so weird and I will never sign anything like that even if I am so desperate for a job. Then again, it could be a misinterpretation. To answer your question, a job offer IS NOT and WILL NEVER BE an employment contract, an EC is provided after you have successfully completed the requirements (including the training), some companies even wait for the regularization before they provide you the said document. Having said that, you may opt to choose the “other” job you were mentioning. You simply need to advise the recruiter (with the company you have a job offer with) that you have changed your mind, it is responsible and professional to do so. This way, they can give your slot to another candidate. As for the Medical, since you have already undergone the process and per the condition you signed, it will be deducted from your first pay, they may charge you for it. You need to determine if the amount is just. Baka naman kasi 20,000 ang singilin nila sayo, di naman ata tama yon.

    Let me know if you need more help.

    Se7en

  4. Wow very informative blog. Patulong naman po. I signed my JO and I’m supposed to start next month. I also had my medical (which will be deducted from my first payout). Kaso I suddenly had this irresistible job opportunity abroad and I decided to pursue it. May bond po ung JO that i signed…do i need to pay the bond even though i haven’t started training yet? How about yung medical fees? (Ok lang naman sakin na bayaran sila). Thank you po for helping. 😊

  5. There really is no harm in trying, but negotiations are done during the job offer, not the final interview (with the client, as you said).

    Second, did you do research on this company? Are they able to nego offers? Some centers (like Genpact and HSBC before, I don’t know now) are able to negotiate offers. One thing for sure, a “call center” is unable to nego offers, but a “captive site” can because budget wise, they are more flexible.

    Third, it will depend on your tenure, your experience, and overall, how you sold yourself during the interview.

    Again, it all goes back to my first point, there is no harm in trying. Then again, I’d rather you don’t expect that the said negotiation will come out positive for you, just to be on the safe side.

    Hope this helps.

  6. there is a form that you need to fill up first during applications, one of the fields there is for “expected salary”.

    onset of the interiew, the interviewer mentioned that they can’t offer that much, the maximum they can offer is XX,XXX. they offered 1k lower from what i’m receiving with my current cc, grabe!
    nagkatalo lng sa non-taxable allowances
    one thing I considered is the location.. im residing in bacoor
    Im currently working in a cc in taguig and this cc im applying for is just in alabang w/c is just 30 mins away from home.
    im for final interview on thursday w/ a client, pede p kayang makipagnegotiate? help… 😦

  7. That’s one less thing to worry about hehe. Daily consumption of energy drinks had its toll on me now, I guess. Hopefully it won’t show up the next time I take a medical exam (I hate the part where they poke you with a needle for a blood sample), I’ve been drinking plenty of water because that’s what the doc suggested, hope it works.

    Thanks a lot seven.

  8. Dear Rein,

    I’m sorry to hear about the negative turnout of your medical.

    The answer to your question is NO, they will not charge you. Kasama sa budget ng recruitment ang medical and barya lang sa kanila yon.

    Go ahead and apply elsewhere, wala namang mawawala sayo if you do that. The only concern I have is the possibility of your medical situation making a comeback, so I suggest pagaling ka muna, then job hunt. Sayang kasi ang pagod, oras, hirap, at salapi.

    Yes, it’s ok to rant. The comment section is for everyone to share their thoughts about the blog topics. So, go lang!

    One more thing, tigilan mo na kasi yan para di na mag negative urin test mo. Lolz. Joke lang.

    Seven

  9. Hi seven, I have a few questions regarding job offers hehe.

    I signed my JO with this company somewhere in Makati, but unfortunately I’ve had problems with my medical. They asked me to come back and retake it, particularly the urinalysis but I would have to shoulder the expense myself, which is fine. But unfortunately I’ve had problems again to the point where I’d have to pay $1k+ just to get a medical clearance, but I’m not willing to pay that amounts since I’m unemployed to begin with and is now planning to just apply again elsewhere.

    So my question is, will they charge me for the initial medical exam since they were the ones who paid for it? Or does the company anticipate this kind of scenario (rant lang yung unang part ehehe)

  10. Oi Seven! Your blog needs an EDIT option! 😦

    I just realized I made a few typos and grammar errors, gah! I can’t even change them

  11. OMG I had wrote a long post and then the page refreshed by itself and now it’s gone 😦

    Meh…anyway I guess I’ll just type a shorter version.

    I just wanted to confirm that yes you can negotiate the offer. I didn’t beleive it at first nor did I have the nerve to try it, especially since I’m just a newbie in the industry and as per Seven’s post, it’s not recommended to negotiate if you’re not a tenured rep.

    However, I’ve been applying left and right, and have gotten accept to most, heck I’ve even signed a few job offers. (good thing I read this blog and learned that a job offer is different from a contract so it’s okay to sign and still explore other options). And it came to the point where I realized “hey, I must be worth something if all these companies have offered me the jobs”. So during my last application, at JP Morgan Chase (am I allowed to drop names?), after passing all the interviews, I saw the job offer, had some concerns and brought it up with the HR that was assigned. To be honest, she made it easy for me, she probably noticed I seemed hesitant and asked.

    The conversation went a little something like this:

    HR: “What’s keeping you from signing?”
    Me: “Well, I have a few pending JO’s and some which I have yet to see”
    HR: “Ah, I see. Do you have any concerns?
    Me: “Is this offer final or is it negotiable?”
    HR: “We don’t usually negotiate with entry levels, but what exactly would you like to negotiate”?”
    Me: “I was just hoping for a higher base, during the interview I said my expected salary was XX,XXXX.”
    HR: “That’s a bit too high for your level, how low are you willing to go?”
    Me: “Maybe even XX,XXXX”
    HR: “Okay, well I’ll see what I can do”

    Then she asked me to come back the next day. =)

    Anyway to cut the long story short, I went back the next day, and they did increase my base pay, but not at my asking amount. But it was still an achievement for me that they even considered it. Hehe. I appreciated that. I haven’t signed the offer, but they did give me until Monday to decide. And Seven is right, they do switch to “sales mode”. My recruiter explained to me that JPMC rewarded employees based on their performance, and that they were big on mobility and pretty much asked that I should consider all factors.

    Then last night, I got another call from JPMC and they asked if I had made a decision yet. And the woman I spoke with, told me how she herself started out as an agent, then became team leader, then manager and now with recruitment. I was quite surprised and touched at the same time that they were being quite persistent. They really did give some great points, and I love how they treated me. No doubt JPMC is a great company, and very reputable, they really made it really hard for me to make a decision. That’s why I had to pm Seven for advice. Hehe.

    Woah! I didn’t realize my post had gotten so long, so to wrap everything up, I just want to say, if you truly believe you’re worth it, and if know that you can be an asset to the company you’re applying for, then most likely, the reason you got a job offer is because they think so too. So don’t be afraid to negotiate, especially if you know you deserve it. 😉

    Lee

  12. Hi Rein. Thank you for the feedback.

    I like your analogy about applicants walking on an eggshell during interviews, however, this isn’t true when the applicant has already passed the recruitment process and is now being offered a job.

    As a recruiter, we switch roles from an evaluator to a sales person, in fact, we spend time learning how best to offer the job, the company, the culture, and the perks therein. This is why it is the turn of the recruiter to feel the jittters because if the offer is not juicy enough, the applicant might turn it down. During my time, part of our scorecard was to measure the sign to decline ratio, if the decline ratio is higher, we are forced to evaluate our sales technique and improve on it, or risk failing the scorecard.

    For this reason, there is no need for an applicant to feel nervous during this final process, he/she needs to focus on evaluating the offer to ensure that he/she understands the details and is amenable to it.

    Finally, yes, some call centers do allow negotiated offers, this will be based on your tenure and the final pay you received from your last center, hence, the the recuiter asks for the amount of your last or current pay, and if needed, a slip. This is why negotiated offers are exclusive to tenured reps and never for fresh graduates or newbies (but you know that already).

    Hope this helps.

  13. Also, nice blog. I’ll get my GF to read through your blog since she’s a newbie and she could definitely use the tips you provided. Thanks again.

  14. Very helpful, thanks for the info.

    Although from an applicant’s perspective, negotiating with the interviewer/recruiter feels like walking on eggshells, especially during the job offer. There’s this unsettling fear that I might be turned down, or worse, they might even retract my JO (after all, in most recruitment processes the compensation is negotiated during the final interview — as far as my experience is concerned).

    BTW, are you saying there are cc’s out there that provide different compensations between employees regardless of the account?

    I’s confused D:

  15. Yes, that’s fine, you can sign a million job offers, but like I said, once you have decided, you must turn the others down out of professional courtesy. For a guide on how to decide, see the other comment I made.

    Too, never put off JOs. It’s your opportunity to evaluate what the company offers and in a way, you can make an informed decision if you pit the offers against each other.

    You can add me on Twitter: @iwannabeacsr

    Or you can BBM me: pin:27C817FF

  16. You’re welcome.

    It’s quite confusing, especially if you do not know what you want. Some people settle for the monetary value, but it’s not just about that. If I were you, look at the general picture of the whole offer, from work to the compensation and benefits package, that is:

    – salary
    – HMO (You know what to look for when you’re considering the HMO, right?)
    – Allowances
    – Night differential value
    – VL, SL, EL,
    – Work schedule
    – type of account serviced
    – attrition rate of the account
    – culture
    – etc

    When confronted by several choices and decision making is difficult, I use the Ben Franklin decision making technique, that is, write down the pros and cons of each and then decide on the merit based on what behooves you most.

    Going back to your question, the medical expense is “barya” for them, and even if you did it, say you have an illness, you still don’t get to sign the job contract because you have been declared unfit to work.

    I’m glad I could somehow help.

    The internet person. Lolz

  17. It’s just as difficult to choose among JO’s as it is to choose a company to apply for imho hehe. Okay here’s the problem,some already want me to undergo the medical exam, and of course they shoulder the costs, so that’s why I keep thinking that signing the JO is practically a contract already, coz they’re already investing on the applicant.

    Will it be taken against me if I undergo their medical exam, sign the JO and then withdraw it afterwards?

    Gah! It’s actually quite confusing. Thank God for the internet and people like you who generously give advice =)

    Lee

  18. That’s fine. Collect and select, as they say. Just be professional enough to let the others know once you have made a decision. The other Recruiters must be informed so they can remove you from the roster and give it to someone else. You are lucky you have several offers, others don’t even get to have one.

    Seven

  19. Thanks for the response (again). Like now, I have a scheduled JO on Monday, April 2, but I still plan to apply for a few more companies before I make a final decision. Your article mentioned that signing a JO doesn’t mean I’m bound already since it’s not a contract, but see, all the JO’s I’ve gotten so far, I haven’t signed any of them yet. It just doesn’t seem right to sign them all, or is it okay? Gosh I’m so torn, just so many factors to put into consideration.

    So my questions are:

    – Is it okay to sign JO’s (2 or more) but keep applying for other companies?
    – Should I just reschedule my JO’s until I’ve applied for all the companies I want to?

    Lee

    P.S Any other way for me to contact you? I still have like a bajillion questions still =D

  20. The job offer is good so long as the account/company is hiring. It is best to ask your recruiter if there is another batch or what the hiring and training timeline is, if there is none, you need to make a decision.

  21. I think asking if a negotiation is possible would be the best thing to do, yea. I’ll prolly try that next time.

    Oh and another question, coz I’ve gotten a few JO’s already, but I still want to explore my options. At the moment, I have an excuse NOT to start right away since I’m still rendering my 30-days, but my 30-days is almost up, and there are still a couple of companies I want to check out.

    How long is an applicant usually given to accept or deny a job offer?

    Lee

  22. A very interesting comment…and I am honored by your visit to my blog.

    Truth is, there is no harm in negotiating, but to win, you must bring something to the table, otherwise, you can always strike a compromise if the other party is willing.

    By your story, I think you bring value to yourself, it’s only a matter of delivering your goods in such a way that you “dangle a carrot” to entice the employer.

    No matter how weak your argument is, or how little the value is, if you can show that it benefits them, then you are sold.

    Some call centers though does not negotiate, as the remuneration is largely decided by the client (or the company itself).

    Try to ask if a negotiation is possible, after all, it does not affect your chances of landing a job.

    Good luck on your application.

  23. Got the link of your blog from PEX, and it’s quite timely since I’m currently job hunting. This post of yours was particularly interesting, especially the part about negotiating the job offer. You mentioned that if you’re a newbie, negotiating the offered salary is generally out of the question. Well, I was wondering if that’s ALWAYS the case.

    You see, I’m not exactly a newbie, my very first job was in a call center, but that was back in 2004. However I shifted careers and became an ESL instructor, and I’ve been teaching ESL for about 7 years now. Just recently, I decided to join the call center industry again, and sort of make a “come back” hehe. Not to boast but I did pretty well during most of my applications, and I could tell my interviewers were quite impressed with me. However, I’m always considered a “newbie” since I don’t have any recent call center experience, and my last one was back in 2004, and it doesn’t help that it was only for a few months (5 months to be exact).

    Many times, I’ve actually thought of negotiating the offered salary, and hope that maybe there were impressed enough to reconsider their offer. But before I could even speak, a little voice in my head kept telling me it was a bad idea and that there was really no way they would raise their offer just because I made a good impression. So, how does it work? Can really impressive applicants, regardless of experience, have a chance at getting a higher offer?

    Oopsie, didn’t realize my post became too long. Hehe, hope to hear from you soon though. =)

    Lee

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