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At the moment I am still employed but I quit due to a very toxic environment and my last day will be mid of January. However, I wrote quite a lot of applications (~40, I never had to write so many) and had several second interviews but nevertheless didn't receive a final offer yet (due to other candidates, they don't want to choose me, slow structures,..).

Hence, my problem is the following: Sure, I have preferences about the positions I applied for but due to the circumstances, should I just sign the first that enters? Or should I wait (and maybe even miss opportunities)?

From my feeling, one shouldn't let a company wait for more than a week with the signature, or?

On the other hand, as the contract is ready and it is sent in, more or less, in time, it should also be valid (just legally seen..). Not to mention the possibility that they are able to fire one within two weeks in the trial period.

I'm located in Germany.

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  • Can you clarify which industry you like to work in as this info might produce slightly different the answers? Example: In IT or similar I would take more time for the job hunt than when applying for junior cashier at a local supermarket since wages are regulated through collective arrangements (Kollektivvertrag)..
    – iLuvLogix
    Dec 16, 2021 at 16:31
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    @JoeStrazzere I added this universal piece of truth to my answer as lesson learned, but I give the OP the benifit of the doubt since they are already looking intensively for a new gig and seem quite confident (otherwise they would have it done the other way around - but that's just my assumption/impression)
    – iLuvLogix
    Dec 16, 2021 at 17:42
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    I'm working or could work in "every" non-biological STEM-job. I quit before having another job as I couldn't stand this environment/my boss any more. That's why I put health above career safety.
    – Ben
    Dec 17, 2021 at 8:05

1 Answer 1

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Sure, I have preferences about the positions I applied for but due to the circumstances, should I just sign the first that enters? Or should I wait (and maybe even miss opportunities)?

There is still time until mid of Jannuary, so I personally wouldn't jump on the first bus that comes my way if it isn't ranked under my top choices, especially when having applied to that many positions and still waiting for multiple final offers.

Some might argue that one can still leave within the probation period if some better job-opportunity comes along, but I personally refrain from such tactics.

If you have sufficient financial backup, why not wait a month or two and continue to apply and also enjoy your short time being unemployed (when having worked a couple of years it's sometimes beneficial to have a break of one or two months).

Since you mention Germany as the country you are working in you are entitled to unemployment benefits if you have worked for a certain amount of time which will make your job-hunt more relaxed in terms of finance.

From my feeling, one shouldn't let a company wait for more than a week with the signature, or?

Hiring-processes can sometimes take months, so if you receive a written and signed offer it's completely ok to let them know that you need some time for consideration, but not more than one to two weeks (that's just my estimated gut-feeling and can vary from one company to another).

If you are still in the interview-process with multiple companies, then there's no need to make an immediate choice and you could still continue to hunt for more/better opportunities.

Again, my advice is the following: If you have a sufficient financial backup, take your time with finding your next gig and enjoy a little (emphasis on little) break from the worklife. A rushed decision can lead to ending up being underpaid, undervalued, unhappy and then you might have really missed out on a gig that suits you much better in terms of income, commute, work-life balance, company-culture etc.

Addendum:

As per comment of @Simon, you could also call the "more preferred" companies once you have an offer from a "less preferred" company, and ask them if it makes sense to wait for them.

Also @Joe has a good point that you should only hand in your notice when you already have a signed offer in writing - I guess that's a lesson learned for the future.

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    What has often worked for me was calling the "more preferred" companies once I had an offer from a "less preferred" company, and asking them if it makes sense to wait for them. Dec 16, 2021 at 17:22
  • @SimonRichter Good point ;) I'll add that to the my answer if you don't mind ;)
    – iLuvLogix
    Dec 16, 2021 at 17:32

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