Congratulations, you got offered the job. You beat 80 other applicants to the post and the hard work paid off, especially with the challenges faced in today’s job-short market.

That said, once you have been offered a new position, there may still be leeway to negotiate a better deal.

From the basic pay and benefits package to the types of hours and employee perks, it’s important to know the most effective way to negotiate a job offer.

Here are some guidelines to help bring you closer to the job you want.

First and foremost, don’t say ‘yes’ on the spot.

Ask for a couple of days to think the job offer over. Then take the time to evaluate the offer so you make an informed decision and you’re certain you want the job.

Considering the job offer

Evaluate the entire job offer, such as role responsibilities, company culture, salary, benefits, perks, flexibility, the commute, and the other factors that matter most when you think about what you want.

Ascertain your minimum salary by researching the current market rates for the type of position you’ve been offered. You could also look at other job specs with similar requirements to the role you’ve been offered and check out what other employers are offering.

In addition to your take-home salary, it’s also worth considering the benefits package. You might be offered healthcare, a pension scheme, stock options, flexible working or perhaps a free gym membership.

Consider the monetary value of each benefit as well as the lifestyle benefits. For example, flexible working hours means you could spend more time with your family.

Make a list of the pros and cons of the job offer. If there are some things that you’re not happy with, consider if there is room to negotiate.

Negotiating the offer

Now you’ve done your homework, you should know your worth, so it’s time to start negotiating your offer.

It’s likely your prospective employer already has your job package in mind, but don’t simply accept or reject the first offer. Explain how your experience, qualifications and knowledge positions you in the market.

Question if there is any flexibility in the offer. Will regular salary reviews take place? Could you juggle your schedule to accommodate childcare?

The important thing to remember here is that you’ve already passed the test. The hiring manager thinks that you would make an excellent addition to the company and someone who can add value to the business. So it makes sense to at least try and negotiate something better.

Even if you negotiate just a little more than the initial offer, you are not likely to regret it in the long term. Just don’t sell yourself short.

If you’re looking for a new opportunity, check out webrecruit’s vacancies currently running.