Got a Job Offer But Have Another Interview: What To Do

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If you’re in a situation where you received a job offer, but are also interviewing for another position, you’ve got a good problem on your hands.

A good problem in the sense that you have received a job offer, which is fantastic. And that you may potentially receive another one on top of it.

If that’s you, take a moment to celebrate your situation.

However, you are still in a tricky position in that you likely want to know if you will be receiving an offer from the potential alternate employer before deciding on your first offer.

With that being the case, we’ve written this article to provide some tips to how to respond to your first offer while trying to buy enough time to conduct your other interview and know if you’ll be receiving an offer from the other company.

Tips for Responding to a Job Offer When You Have Another Interview

Respond Promptly

Even though it may be tempting to want to drag out your response to the initial job offer to buy yourself some time, you’ll want to be sure to respond promptly to the initial offer. And by promptly I mean in 24 hours or less.

In your initial response, you don’t need to accept or decline the offer, but you do need to acknowledge the offer and establish communication around timeline and the next steps.

Practice Gratitude

In addition to a prompt response, be sure to communicate your appreciation for the opportunity in your reply.

A job offer is a big deal, and the organization is putting its trust in you, so be sure to practice gratitude in your reply to the job offer (even if you’re more excited about the other opportunity for which you’re interviewing).

It’s important to remember that even as you’re working to buy time to complete the other interview process, your priority is to not do anything to jeopardize the opportunity that you do have. So be prompt and appreciative in your response.

Communicate Your Situation and Ask for a Deadline That Will Give You Enough Time

In addition to the points above, your initial reply will also be your opportunity to communicate your situation and try to buy more time to continue the interview process with the other opportunity.

Companies understand that the job market is competitive and that candidates are likely evaluating multiple opportunities. If you’re a top candidate, they’ll hopefully want to do what they can to keep you happy and interested in their opportunity. With that being the case, they may very well accommodate your request for time to complete your other interview process. 

Here is a sample email template that you can use in your reply to a job offer to give yourself enough time for your other interview: 

Dear {Hiring Manager Name},

 

Thank you so much for the offer of the {job title} at {company name}! I’m excited about the opportunity and am thrilled that you’ve offered me the chance to join your team.

 

While I’m excited about this offer, I wanted to let you know that I’m also in active discussions regarding another opportunity. I expect to have a resolution regarding that opportunity around {estimated date of offer decision from other company}.

 

To that end, would it be ok if I got back to you with a final decision by {a day or two after expected offer decision from other company}? That would help me to have complete information to make a decision on the best next steps for myself and my family.

 

Warm regards,

 

{Name}

Note that there is a bit of nuance to the usage of the template above depending upon where you are in the interview process with the other company.

In my opinion, you really only need to communicate the context of having another offer if you’re asking for five or more business days to reflect on the offer. That length of time would be excessive without some context as to why you need that long.

Otherwise, you can just offer a date by which you’ll reply, without mentioning the other offer.

Communicate Your Offer to the Other Company

In parallel, you’ll also want to let the other company that you’re interviewing with know that you’ve received a job offer.

Within your communication to the other company, you’ll want to attempt to establish a timeline by which they expect to make a decision. That will enable you to set expectations accordingly with the first company.

Ideally, you’ll get a sense of the timeline with this company before attempting to set a response timeline with the company that offered you. However, if you can’t get their timeline within the recommended 24 hour response window, then you’ll need to make your best estimate of what that will be when setting expectations with the company that made you an offer. 

Here is a sample email template that you can use with the company that hasn’t offered you yet: 

Dear {Point of Contact Name},

 

I’m reaching out to let you know that I’ve received another job offer.

 

I have not responded to that job offer yet, as I am excited about this opportunity and would love to complete the interview process before making a final decision for the best next steps for myself and my family.

 

To that end, could you please provide me with an estimated timeline on when you will reach a final offer decision?

 

If possible, it would be great to hear back on this by {less than 24 hours from receiving your initial offer}, so I appropriately set expectations regarding my decision timeline with the other organization.

Warm regards,

 

{Name}

If You Can’t Get Enough Time, Make a Decision Based Upon the Information You Have Now

Despite your best efforts, you may not be able to align the timelines of your two opportunities. If that’s the case, you’ll simply need to make a decision with the information at hand about whether to take the offer that you do have, or risk it and continue the interview process with the other company.

Ultimately, if you’re similarly exited about both opportunities, you probably want to go with the bird in the hand and take the offer you do have. If you’re much more excited about the other opportunity, you may want to hold out for that one.

At the end of the day, you’re eating the risk and rewards to make a calculated bet about what is best for you.

Best of luck!

About the author

Dan Slocum

Dan is the founder of Best Fit Work and a marketer and business professional with over 10 years of experience. Dan writes to share content, tools, and resources to help people discover and thrive in their own best fit work.

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