Two interviews and a dilemma . . .

2013-09-30 01:00

Two interviews and a dilemma . . .


A poster writes with a dilemma. He has an interview on Tuesday, and another one on Friday.  But, you've guessed it: the Friday job is his favourite. He asks me: 



Can I accept the Tuesday job, then withdraw if I get offered the Friday job too?


But the unfortunate point is...

...if you accept the Tuesday job with school A, you should not go to the Friday interview at school B, because you are no longer free to enter into a contract with them, having already entered into a verbal contract with the other school.


Sorry!  Not the answer that you were hoping to hear, I know.


If you get offered Job A, and then decide to accept it, you must then withdraw from Job B. You cannot do what you would most wish to do: accept Job A, as an insurance offer like UCAS, and then go to Job B, get that, and then turn round and reject Job A after all.


A school has gone to the expense and effort of advertising and interviewing. It offers job to candidate X. If X decides after a few days to turn it down, then they offer to Y. But alack! alas! candidate Y in the meantime has accepted another job offer...


This is what schools fear.


Most schools will offer the job by phone that evening or the next day, and expect an immediate answer to allow them to rush an offer to Y if X turns it down. Some schools offer on interview day in the flesh, and expect an immediate answer. I know of several schools who put a written offer letter in front of the candidate and get them to sign an acceptance there and then! I have done it myself with am outstanding candidate I did not want to lose.


The very most that you could hope for would be 24 hours to think it over, I'm afraid. And you should be aware that some schools actually ask you at interview if you would accept the job if it were offered you. 


And if it is near a resignation deadline (31 October, 28/9 February, 31 May), schools will be very nervous about letting you have any thinking time at all, for fear of losing their second-choice candidate if they delay.


If you DID break a verbal contract (turn down job A after accepting it...) not only will your name be Mud, but also School B would be justified in withdrawing their offer when they heard about it, as you fraudulently led them to believe that you were able to enter into a contract with them (i.e. accept their offer) when in fact you were contracted to School A...


 So left with no job at all...


This is not the answer that you hoped for, I know! You have to decide:

 a) How desperate you are to get another job, can you risk not getting one at all

b) How likely you are to get Job B


 Over to you!


You are probably thinking that this is all just theory, but think about it again. Suppose that you got offer, and accepted Job B - a permanent post - lovely!  Then a week later you got a letter from School B saying that they had since interviewed someone else who suited them better, so were withdrawing the offer to you.

How would you feel?

Just a little bit upset and annoyed... just a bit!


It is binding on them, and binding on you. And that's that.




Best wishes 


Meet Theo on line on the Jobseekers,  Careers Clinic and Independent Forums, where she answers jobseeking and careers queries regularly each week.