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I am speaking to a few different firms and have recently received an offer. However, I have found out that the turnaround was fairly quick and they were willing to get the offer on the lower end of my range.

However, I am a little surprised that they were not willing to give me a week to decide (although I know internal recruiters may be pushing to close as quickly as possible).

I was definitely excited to hear this, and I said I'd be willing to work on this (but they only gave me the weekend to decide).

However, I called back saying I wanted to speak with former employees as a policy I have whenever I make a decision, and since those are scheduled the following week, I'd like a week to decide.

The recruiter mentioned that he wasn't sure what I'd get out of speaking with other employees (and that there is probably a reason they are not with the firm anymore). Also, he mentioned it seems like I wasn't interested in the role and therefore perhaps they should be looking at other candidates. I was taken aback by this statement, since I try to look at the firm from multiple sources and try to take into account the bias of employees that may have left (which will inevitably be there for anyone who left any firm). However, this seemed somewhat defensive and the pushiness of only giving me less than 3 days left a bad taste in my mouth.

What can I reasonably expect to do in this situation - in terms of salary/comp negotiations, getting the signing pushed back at least a week since my written offer (which hasn't been given, only confirmed verbally)?

Based on getting a decision the very next day, it seems like their turnaround is very quick, and they need other engineers to expand, which I can understand. However, the way the internal recruiter handled this is giving me a red flag.

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You don't have a written offer, so therefore you don't have an offer. The ball is in their court; you need to see the contract (or at least the written offer, with all benefits and salary included), and have some time to think about it, before you sign anything.

Contact other employees on LinkedIn or similar - don't expect the recruiter or company to do that for you. To a certain degree, ignore the recruiter - you won't deal with them once you accept or reject the position.

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    “Ignore the recruiter” oh yes, they will only tell you what they want you to know so they get their fee... – Solar Mike Feb 21 at 19:45
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What can I reasonably expect to do in this situation - in terms of salary/comp negotiations, getting the signing pushed back at least a week since my written offer (which hasn't been given, only confirmed verbally)?

If I understand your situation correctly, you have a verbal offer, with all the details they normally provide, and they would like an answer quickly.

You pushed back that now you want to speak to "former employees", and that you want to take a week to make a decision.

It makes complete sense to wait for a written offer. And you can choose to take a week to come to your decision. And it's certainly within their right to decide that you don't seem interested enough to continue dealing with.

So you get to decide. If you want the job based on the verbal offer, it might make sense for you to shorten the time you spend deciding as much as possible. That would give you the best chance to get the written offer.

Otherwise, just decline and move on to the next offer with a different company.

For the future, try to have it clear in your own mind what would make the job acceptable, and what would make it not worthwhile. That way, you'll be in a better position to decide more quickly, should the need arise. Lots of companies don't want to wait long for an answer.

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