With fierce competition for qualified, experienced professionals in today’s oil and gas, construction and engineering job market, counter offers are becoming increasingly common.

Handling a counter offer can be a difficult process to navigate, especially when the terms of the offer are tempting. However, there are a few strategies you can employ and questions you can ask yourself to gain some clarity.

Not every employer will initiate a counter offer conversation, but it always pays to be prepared. Read on for our advice on how to decide whether to accept a counter offer.

Remember Why You Handed in Your Notice

There is always a good reason behind offering your resignation and leaving your job for pastures new. Today’s Engineers and O&G professionals might want to spend more time at home rather than being based onsite. Or perhaps you are looking for a stretch project that can build on years of experience in the industry and put you in prime position for your next promotion.

Either way, it’s important to remember these factors when assessing the offer in front of you. By this point, you will have applied to, interviewed for (probably through several stages) and accepted another job. You’ve spent considerable time thinking about your options and come to the conclusion that your current role is no longer right for you.

So, what has changed with the counter offer? If the reason you were leaving was a lack of good pay then a salary increase could be all you need to stay. But if you had concerns about your workplace culture or felt like you had reached a ceiling in your job, you should keep these reasons in mind. Remember why you wanted to leave and trust your first instincts.


Consider Why Your Employer Wants to Keep You on Board

It’s flattering to believe the reason you’ve received the counter offer is because you’re an asset to the company and someone they want to continue to invest in and grow. However, it’s also possible that your employer is fully aware of the time and cost involved with hiring and replacing you – particularly in the current employment market.

The terms of a counter offer will vary between employers, however, in most cases, they will focus on remuneration. This could include an increase in your annual salary, your benefits package or perhaps a bonus scheme. And while this can be a welcome (and tempting) surprise, on reflection it could be too little too late. Think about whether you’ve asked for a pay rise in the past and were denied one. Why is the budget suddenly available now when you have one foot out the door?

The same is true of promotions. If your employer knows you desire a better position and believes you’re qualified for it, why haven’t you been promoted already? Even if a counter offer addresses your immediate concerns, it might not bode well for your long-term plans with the business.


Think About What the Outcomes Will Be

Accepting a counter offer will have consequences – both with your existing and prospective employers. Although your current employer will no longer need to replace you, they could be left questioning your loyalty. Not only can this damage the trust you have built over many years and potentially create an awkward work environment to return to, it can also potentially put you first in line for any future redundancies. Understand that you have shown your willingness to part ways with your employer and they might now feel the same about you.

The other side of the equation is that you will be going back on a commitment you made to your (formerly) new employer. Although it is understandable that you would change your mind, breaking an agreement can harm any future relationship or opportunities with them. In addition, accepting a counter offer could mean missing out on different benefits and incentives that made you accept the role in the first place – whether that’s a promotion, the chance to develop new skills or take on more responsibilities.



So, should you accept a counter offer? Although it can be tempting when you’re presented with a persuasive proposal, it is going to depend on why you handed in your notice in the first place and whether your employer can offer you what was missing.

Before receiving the counter offer, you already had reasons that were enough for you to decide to leave your current job. Whether they were minor or major, personal or professional, if the counter offer doesn’t address these concerns they can arise again. Accepting a counter offer might give you a short-term salary boost or a better position but it could mean sacrificing a job that you otherwise wanted.

Luckily, you don’t have to navigate this process alone. Working with a recruiter puts you in the best possible position to manage a counter offer and help you land on the job that’s right for you.

At Patch Personnel, we are experts in oil and gas, engineering and construction recruitment. Our network connects you with the best jobs in the industry, and our staff have the knowledge and experience you need when it comes to managing a counteroffer. For more information on what we can do for your career, get in touch today.