How to evaluate multiple job offers

You’ve been interviewing like crazy for several finance jobs, and your career savvy and sharp interviewing skills have finally paid off. You have received several job offers from the firms you have applied to, and now it’s time to make a decision. So which do you choose? While you may be excited with this scenario and staring a new job with a company of your choice, narrowing down your prospects and choosing from among several good firms can be stressful. As each has something different to offer, you don’t want to be too hasty in your decision making and choose a company that may not be the best fit.

When it comes down to making a choice, it’s important to evaluate your options against your personal expectations and goals. There are several ways you can examine multiple offers and land on the firm that is best for you.

1. Examine more than the salary
You may be tempted by a big paycheck, but don’t be so quick to dismiss the companies that may offer more comprehensive benefits. One company may offer a higher salary level, but fail to include sufficient vacation and sick days, life insurance, retirement accounts and other benefits that add more financial security to your life. As a result, you may have more money in the bank, but will likely burn through some of it planning ahead for features that your company doesn’t offer, such as retirement. On the flip side, a separate firm may extend a reduced salary, but sweeten the deal with a 401(k) that has a matching contribution, a high-end health plan that includes dental and vision and a generous perks package, such as a free gym membership. When weighing these options, make sure you choose the company that features benefits which best fit your needs.

2. What are the growth opportunities?
It’s important to know what your future goals are when evaluating different job offers, as each position may afford you a different opportunity. If you’re looking for a career in which you can climb the corporate ladder, and not just a job, you may take a role with a company that offers more training and mobility opportunities. In some cases, those positions may be of a lower rank that would you would prefer, but may also give you more opportunities to learn from mentors and gain a more well-rounded experience and foundation. If you’re seeking to stay in a single role for several years to come, a job in which mobility is limited may be your best bet. Either way, knowing what each company offers in terms of professional development can and should play a central role in your decision.

3. How is the company culture?
The best job in the world can be darkened if you are not working with a team that shares your enthusiasm and work ethic. Company culture can vary significantly by firm, with some taking a more formal and stuffy approach, and others priding themselves on creating a more flexible and relaxed atmosphere. Keep in mind that you’ll be spending 8 hours a day, if not more, with your colleagues, so choosing an atmosphere that is friendly and comfortable for you can make a huge difference in your level of job satisfaction.

If you are stuck between two firms and are still unsure which is the best fit, don’t be afraid to let them know (gently) that you are still considering other offers. This may open up an opportunity to negotiate certain elements of your job offer and create a job package you’re excited about.