Can You Ask for Time to Consider a Job Offer?

After time spent searching, filling out applications, and interview preparation, you get that email or call you’ve been waiting for. They want you for the job. 

Cue the confetti! Or not…

It’s okay to not accept the job as soon as it comes to you. If you need time to consider their offer, resist the temptation to blurt out a halfhearted ‘yes.’ You may need time to consider your options and determine the best path for your future.

Are you allowed to ask for time to consider a job offer? 

Absolutely. Employers understand job seekers may need to carefully consider the job before giving a final answer. If the organization is unwilling to budge, it could be an indication this isn’t the place for you.

Common reasons to ask for time 

    Read more: How to Negotiate Your Salary (For Career Newbies & Industry Vets)

    Should you tell them why you need time to think about it?

    You’re not obligated to give any reason, but if there’s something you’re concerned about, it’s better to ask about it now.

    Especially if the details of the offer you received were not what you expected to receive, you should bring it up. This can open the door to negotiation or inform your counter offer.

    How much time can you ask for? 

    First, read the offer letter or email carefully. It may outline by when the company expects to hear from you. 

    Otherwise, two to three days is usually enough time to consider the offer, but as a general rule of thumb, ask for no more than a week. If you plan on doing a good bit of negotiation, then be conservative in how much time you ask for. 

    No matter if you’re rejecting, accepting, or asking for more time, always respond within 24 hours of the offer and express gratitude. 

    How to ask for more time: examples

    Example #1 – No reason given

    Example #2 – Offer is different than you expected

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