Question: Should I Accept a Counter-Offer?


When you have an in-demand skill set, finding a new architecture, engineering, or construction opportunity may lead to more than just a job offer. If your current employer is worried about losing you, they may provide you with a counter-offer as a means of enticing you to stay. Usually, this means being offered at least a pay increase, if not a full-blown promotion, and may even be better than the new offer you have on the table.

Considerations When Provided A Counter-Offer

When faced with a strong counter-offer, the idea of saying “no” may be difficult to wrap your head around, especially if you are not entirely unhappy with your current employer. After all, you already know the business, the people, and the organizational leaders, so the sense of familiarity may be comforting. Plus, a counter-offer typically means more money, a better job title, or both.

However, there are points you need to consider beyond the counter-offer. While it may look very attractive on paper, you were searching for a new job for a reason. Before you decide whether or not to accept, ask yourself these questions.

Is the Real Issue Resolved?

If you were looking for a new opportunity, you need to reflect on why you chose to seek out a position elsewhere. Were you bored by your current role? Do you not feel comfortable in the company’s culture? Did you feel underpaid or underappreciated?

Once you understand why you were considering leaving, you need to determine whether the counter-offer actually resolves this core issue. If the answer is “yes,” then you may want to consider the counter-offer. However, if the answer is “no,” then additional pay or a new title might not be enough to increase your job satisfaction, so you may find yourself seeking out new opportunities in the near-future.

Is It Too Little, Too Late?

Did you request a raise or promotion not long ago only to be turned down even though you had a strong case? Have you sought out opportunities for advancement or chances to grow your skills just to end up empty-handed? Are internal promotions or raises a rarity in the company?

If you answered “yes” to those questions above, then you need to consider whether the counter-offer is because the company values you or if it is about them. In organizations where raises and promotions are few and far between, accepting a counter-offer means you are continuing in that paradigm. It is unlikely the company is going to change simply because you were ready to leave. Instead, the counter-offer is about saving them the trouble of replacing you, which does not indicate that they actually value your contributions.

Will It Put You at Risk?

If you have a counter-offer in hand, that means you are also considering an offer elsewhere. In these situations, your current employer is fully aware that you were ready to head out the door, and they may constantly wonder whether that will happen again. Often, that means you are at risk.

Since your employer knows that you were willing to leave, they may question your loyalty. That means, if there is ever a reason to reduce their staff, you may be one of the first to go. Additionally, the counter-offer may not be about the long-term. Instead, they may use it to keep you on board just long enough to find your replacement, and then they will send you packing on their terms.

Whether this is the case depends largely on your current employer. However, it is important to consider how they may view the entire situation. Otherwise, you may find yourself unemployed not long after saying “yes” to the counter-offer.

Are You Ready for a New Architecture, Engineering, or Construction Job?

If you are ready for a new, exciting opportunity in the architecture, engineering, or construction fields, the experienced team at RealStreet can connect you to employers who are actively looking for skilled candidates. Contact us to speak with one of our professional recruiters about your ideal role today and see how our services can make finding a new position easier than ever before.

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