Evaluating + Negotiating Offers

Receiving an offer for a job or internship is exciting! In order to make the best decision, you should evaluate your offer and consider negotiating. Doing research in advance will help you to feel prepared to negotiate, as well as help you to respond to your potential employer in a timely manner.

Students can learn more about evaluation and negotiation by attending the workshop series events. If you have questions about your offer or about negotiation tactics, please schedule an appointment with the Career & Professional Development team.


There are many considerations to account for when you are evaluating an offer. To be sure that you understand your offer, you should ask to review it in writing before you accept. We encourage you to read your offer letter carefully and consider the following:

  • Type of Work: what kind of work will I be doing in this role?
  • Values: how do the values of the employer align with my own?
  • Career Trajectory: how does this position align with my overall career goals?
  • Costs: what type of up-front costs will I encounter should I accept this position (i.e. relocation costs)?
  • Compensation: what benefits, such as health care, retirement, and professional development funds, are being offered in addition to salary as part of the overall compensation package?
  • Market Rate: how does the salary compare to industry averages?

You may have additional things to consider as you evaluate your offer – take time to review the offer and prepare follow-up questions to ask your potential employer. You may choose to utilize our Job Offer Evaluation & Comparison Sheet as you consider your offer (or offers). You can access this sheet through Google Drive using your U-M credentials.

Evaluation Resources

You may consider referring to some of these external resources to evaluate your offer:

This is not an exhaustive list – be thorough as you conduct research to understand your market rate when evaluating your offer.


We encourage you to consider negotiating, especially in a scenario where you have received a full-time job offer. After you have evaluated your offer, identify the elements that you would like to change or improve. When you follow up with your potential employer to negotiate, you should:

  • Maintain a positive tone
  • Be prepared for multiple scenarios
  • Allow the employer time to respond
  • Take time to evaluate the revised offer (if applicable) before making a decision

Showing appreciation for the offer during the negotiation will help to ensure that the conversation is a positive one.

Professional Ethics

In order to maintain positive relationships with every employer, you should not continue to interview once you have accepted an offer. Backing out on an offer, commonly referred to is reneging, can be extremely damaging to your professional reputation. This practice can also damage the reputation of Taubman College and the University of Michigan. You should strive to be absolutely sure that you can commit to an offer before accepting.

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