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I work for a French start-up and I am actively searching for a new job elsewhere. It would be my first "job transition" and I wonder how things would/should happen after a successful interview. Is the following scenario correct?

  1. the new company accepts my application and sends me an informal job offer
  2. I have a few days for thinking about it (how many? 2-3? 4-5?)
  3. I communicate to the new company my decision to accept or not the job offer
  4. assuming that I accept, I receive a formal job offer
  5. once I get the formal job offer, I can safely quit my current job

My question is also the following: at which point should I talk about the job offer to my current employer? If, during step 2 above, I am not actually sure about whether to accept the job offer or not, can I talk about the offer with my employer and try to negotiate my role and/or duties in the company? Especially because these are topics that I wished to talk about with him anyway. And moreover, should I see that he is not that interested in keeping me at his company, I will have fewer regrets in accepting the new job offer.

Or maybe it's better to talk with him about these topics before receiving an actual job offer? Otherwise it could be perceived as blackmailing?

  • If you want to discuss your current role and responsibilities, do this without mentioning the fact that you are looking for a job. As you said, if you feel your current employer doesn't take your role seriously, that may contribute to your eventual decision. – Brandin Jul 26 '16 at 5:14
  • @Brandin yes, that was my initial idea. The problem is the timing : I could receive a job offer as soon as next week. Should I discuss about my role and responsibilities with my employer this week, without mentioning the possible job offer? He probably would ask me if I have offers elsewhere (he already asked me some weeks ago, and I said no) – user289366 Jul 26 '16 at 7:00
  • @user289366 If he already asked you last week about job offers, then he won't ask you again. Don't mention anything about that to him when you talk with him. – Brandin Jul 26 '16 at 17:40
  • @Brandin Thank you, I think I understand your point. I insist by bringing the 'Politely Asking for a Competitive Offer' argument from this answer to a similar question. Could there be room for gentle discussion and mutually respectful negotiation after all? – user289366 Jul 26 '16 at 21:06
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There are many reasons why you should not mention active jobseeking, and especially formal offers, to a current employer. There are very fee reasons why you should - and most of them are also a reason not to.

First, your employer may fire you for simply doing so. This might not be permitted in your jurisdiction, but why risk it?

Second, if your employer is only going to give you a raise because you're leaving, they were already underpaying you. Otherwise remuneration would have been at that level already. A employer who will clearly undercut you unless and until absolutely necessary, is not an employer you should want to stay with.

Third, it disrupts the environment for your colleagues, who now have no idea how much longer you'll be there, and have to wonder why you're looking to jump ship. What do you know that they don't? What can they afford to tell you, that may backfire on them later? It makes everything uncomfortable for everyone - and then if you don't get the new job, you've burnt that trust for no gain.

Keep of to yourself until you have accepted the new offer. Then tell the person directly responsible for your activity as you hand them the letter of resignation. Whether and when you tell your coworkers will depend entirely on how well you know and like them, and the reasons for your leaving. Generally, the more friendly you are or the more professional they have been, the more time you give them to work out an exit and continuity plan.

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    Fourth: If your current employer finds out where you're applying they may undermine your efforts. – Doyle Lewis Jul 25 '16 at 23:43
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    Basically you are saying that any indecision I may have with respect to accepting the job offer, I should solve it by myself? I would not ask for a salary raise but for "guarantees" on my future role and responsibilities. – user289366 Jul 26 '16 at 7:04
  • No, I'm saying that you don't say anything about other jobs to the job you have now, regardless of what else is going on with other jobseeking. – user53718 Jul 26 '16 at 7:06
  • Yes I understand. But my decision would be much more informed if I could speak with my employer: starting next September my role could possibly change slightly due to fiscal adjustments of the company, and precisely knowing what my role will be would be very important for my decision – user289366 Jul 26 '16 at 15:41
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After you get a formal offer, look at your start date, look at your salary. Negotiate salary if you need/want to. Negotiate the start date to make sure you have enough time to give your current employer notice and that your new job start won't overlap.

I would guess you have about 1 week to do the above.

Once you accept your offer, and you get a confirmation, you notify your current employer.

If you tell your current employer before accepting a job, you will probably get fired and if your offer falls through, you will be left unemployed. Even if they match the new offer, you are marked as disloyal employee so they will probably start looking for replacement.

  • Employment laws vary by locale - not everywhere is an "at will" jurisdiction. The OP appears to be in France - where I think it unlikely for them to be immediately fired. However, you're right that negotiating using another job offer can end up with you being replaced eventually ("oh, we don't need any senior developers, you're redundant and we'll hire a junior with a different enough job description and much lower salary") – HorusKol Jul 25 '16 at 23:42

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