6 Factors to Consider When Searching for a Job

Are you on the hunt for your next job? If so, knowing which elements to consider to find the right fit for you is important. There are many components of a role and company that affect your job satisfaction and longevity. Here are six factors to consider when searching for a job:

  1. Compensation and benefits: We can’t overlook an obvious factor: compensation. However, this doesn’t only mean base salary. Are there additional components to the job’s compensation package such as performance-based bonuses, company stock options, or 401(k) company matching? Other benefits such as paid time off and health insurance should be considered too. Some companies offer more unique benefits as well such as complimentary meals during work hours, unlimited PTO, early-release summer Fridays, or monthly mental health days. Keep in mind that the labor market is dynamic, and benefits and perks will evolve over time.

  2. Room for growth and development: When envisioning your professional future, is continuous learning and advancement within a single company part of the picture? If so, address this during your interview process. If internal promotions hold significance for you, a very small company with a staff of 10 people might not align with your aspirations. Consider whether you’ll have the opportunity for mentorship from a peer or manager. Inquire about the company’s strategies for ensuring the development of your professional skills and industry knowledge. Opportunities to learn, grow your skills, or engage with a mentor can significantly influence your job satisfaction and duration.

  3. Office culture and company values: Evaluate the company’s culture, mission statement, and core values in your decision-making process. Does the company’s purpose and ethos resonate with your own values? Will you feel at ease starting each workday with this team, and does the work contribute to something meaningful for your community or others in general? Aligning with a company’s values can improve your engagement and job satisfaction. If this alignment is a priority for you, research the company’s culture and mission before submitting your application.

  4. Personality fit: This is closely tied to office culture, specifically concerning the peers and managers you’ll collaborate with. Beyond what’s on paper, consider how well your personality aligns with your interviewers. Do you share similar work ethics, senses of humor, common values, or communication styles? Often, you can gauge the personality fit (or lack thereof) throughout the interview process. Embrace the connection if you feel right at home and trust your instincts if something feels off. When contemplating your overall satisfaction and longevity in a role, the fit with the personalities around you is a critical factor to consider.

  5. Physical work setup: In a post-pandemic world, this element holds significant weight for many candidates. Understanding a job’s structure is crucial. Is it a fully remote position, a hybrid setup with some days in-office, or a fully onsite job? If this is a high value factor for you, inquire about it and seek clear answers.

  6. Working hours/work-life balance: Last but certainly not least, carefully evaluate whether the job’s expected working hours align with your acceptable limits. Consider if time away from work in the evenings and on weekends is a priority for you, or if you’re focused on maximizing your working hours. Depending on the industry, role, company policies, and other factors, the expected hours and schedule for a job can vary significantly. To prevent any surprises in this area, ask about these expectations during your interview process and assess if they align with your availability. Accepting a job that doesn’t align with your work-life balance expectations can quickly lead to burnout.

This list is certainly not exhaustive, but it’s a great starting point to help you consider meaningful factors regarding your next role. Happy job hunting!

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