Are you thinking it may be time to switch jobs or forge a new career path? You’re not alone. According to LinkedIn, thanks to millennials, job-hopping is becoming more common. Many people wanting to move up the corporate ladder often assume every new job comes with a more impressive title, a substantial raise and more perks. But before taking that leap of faith, ask yourself these seven questions to figure out how this change might affect your lifestyle and your bottom line.
- If You Switch Jobs Now, What Will the Long-Term Impact Be?
U.S. News suggests viewing your career as a marathon, not a sprint. Moving from job to job to cash in on a salary boost may provide short-term gratification, but it may not leave you satisfied in the long run. Think about why you’re leaving: If you crave bigger challenges or want to move to a bigger company, for example, perks such as free gym membership or discounted meals won’t necessarily help you get where you want to be.
- Will They Show You the Money?
It’s important to compare all the financial elements of your potential job to your current one, such as whether both include bonuses or commissions in addition to a base salary, according to Fidelity Investments. Don’t forget to ask whether overtime or weekend work is required for the position.
- Have You Looked Beyond the Paycheck?
While taking home a larger salary is a major plus, be sure to assess the job’s employee benefits, as well, which usually make up 25 to 30 percent of your salary. Accepting more cash with less generous health and retirement plans, for example, could be a mistake, according to Monster.com. Create a comparison checklist to evaluate the proposed benefits before making a job switch. Make sure to find out:
- What kind of health coverage is available, and whether it will cost you more than what you’re currently paying in premiums and deductibles
- If your potential employer will contribute similar amounts to your insurance plan
- Whether additional benefits, such as dental and vision care, disability insurance and maternity leave, are offered
- If your new job comes with as many vacation, personal and sick days
- What work from home options (if any) are available
- Is It Your Kind of Workplace?
When you go for the job interview, take a good look around: Does it seem like a collaborative workplace? Is the culture similar to what you’re used to? Do employees dress more formally than at your current job? You want to make sure the work environment is one in which you think you’ll be able to thrive.
- Will You Have a Longer Commute or Longer Hours?
If the new job means more hours in your car or at your desk, that can be a big lifestyle change, especially if you have children in school or day care. You may want to do a practice trip to find out how long and how costly your new commute will be. If you’ll be spending more on fuel or tolls, take that into consideration.
- What About the In-Between Time?
Will there be a gap between when you leave your current job and when the new one begins? Think about what that will cost you, so you can adjust your budget.
- Does Moving Up Mean Moving?
If you’d have to move to a different state, weigh income tax rates and municipal taxes against the ones you currently pay. Housing may cost more, and don’t forget to account for relocation fees (if your future employer doesn’t cover them).
Many factors play into the decision to switch jobs. Take the time to evaluate the full impact of a potential job change and whether the move will truly advance your career, improve your lifestyle and contribute to your overall well-being.