Employment Offer: Everything you need to know!

An employer providing a employment offer to a new employee


 An employer proposes an employment offer to any candidate who has successfully cleared the interview process and is being considered for employment. When an employer decides to make an employment offer, they typically extend it to the candidate via an Employment Offer letter.

The employment offer letter provides the candidate with all the necessary information about the job and serves as a binding agreement between the employer and the employee. Employers need to make a clear and concise offer that accurately reflects the expectations and requirements of the job. Similarly, candidates should carefully review the offer letter and ask any questions they may have before accepting the job.

What is an Employment Offer?

As we know, an employment offer is a formal communication made by an employer to prospective employees to offer them a job. The employment offer typically includes essential details such as the start date of employment, the position, job title, duties and responsibilities, compensation, benefits, work schedule, and much more critical information shall be discussed as we proceed with this article.

Employment offers are typically made after the employer has determined that the candidate is the best fit for the job and has completed all necessary background and reference checks. The employment offer is a binding agreement between the employer and the employee. Once candidates accept the offer, they are officially hired and expected to fulfill the job requirements.

The employment offer ensures that the employer and the employee have a proper grasp of the job requirements and expectations, making it a crucial step in the hiring process. It provides the employee with a sense of security and stability, knowing that they have been officially offered the job and can start planning their future with the organization. It is also an opportunity for the employer to establish a positive relationship with the employee, setting the tone for the employment relationship and demonstrating their commitment to their new hire.

Discover the visa requirements for a work visa in Norway and explore a compelling employment offer.

Is an Offer Letter Legally Binding?

The legally binding nature of an offer letter hinges on the entity issuing it and the specific terms outlined within the document. Generally, offer letters are not classified as legal documents, as they primarily propose a position to potential candidates rather than establish a formal contractual relationship.

While employers often utilize offer letters as a preliminary step to minimize hiring risks, these letters do not legally obligate candidates. As a prospective employee, you retain the freedom to consider and accept offers from other employers until you formally sign an offer letter with a specific company. The offer letter is an expression of intent, and no legal commitments are established until both parties enter into a formal employment contract. Therefore, the critical point at which legal obligations are incurred is when the employer and the employee duly sign a comprehensive employment contract.

Things to include in every Employment Offer Letter

There are a variety of crucial components that need to be a part of an employment offer. An employment offer should be comprehensive and compelling to a potential employee. The offer should include important information about the position, salary, duties, and performance requirements. Information on the probationary period, non-disclosure and non-compete agreements, a termination clause, and the acceptance of the offer.

These components ensure that the employee is aware of the position, the pay and perks, and the performance and conduct standards set by the business. A compelling employment offer can provide the groundwork for a long-lasting working relationship. Once the offer is accepted, it becomes a legally binding contract between the employer and the employee. An employment offer should comprise the following components:

Position Description: Outline the position’s title and a succinct description to start. This should contain the department, job location, and hours of employment. In addition, include details about when the role will begin and whether it will be a full- or part-time position.

Job Responsibilities: It’s crucial to describe the employment requirements, including any obligations or duties that might be expected. The employee will be more likely to comprehend their responsibilities and expectations.

Start date and Work schedule: Specify the employee’s intended start date in addition to their regular work schedule, which ought to comprise the number of working hours and days off.

Probationary Period: A probationary period is frequently incorporated into job offers. Typically, this period lasts three to six months, giving the employer adequate time to assess the employee’s performance and determine if they fit the business perfectly.

Compensation: This is an essential component of any job offer. Often include base pay or hourly pay, as well as any potential bonuses or commission schemes. It provides information about benefits, such as health insurance, retirement savings plans, and vacation time, to which the employee is entitled.

Performance Expectations: Be clear about the performance standards that will be expected of the employee, including goals and targets they will be expected to meet. This will help to ensure that both the employer and employee are on the same page concerning performance expectations.

Employment status: Indicate if the role is full-time, part-time, temporary, or permanent.

Non-compete and confidentiality agreements: Include any confidentiality or non-compete agreements the employee must sign as a condition of employment, if applicable. These agreements protect the company’s intellectual property and trade secrets. The employer may include any necessary language in the employment offer.

Termination Clause: Clearly state the conditions under which the employment relationship may be terminated, including reasons such as misconduct, mutual consent, or notification.

At-will employment: If the position is at-will, it should be specified that the employee can be fired at any time, for any reason, and that the employer is also free to modify the terms and conditions of employment at any time.

Offer Acceptance/Signature line: Finally, include a ‘signature line’ section that requires the employee to sign and return the employment offer within a specified timeframe. This will help to ensure that the employee has accepted the offer and is committed to the position.

What happens after a Candidate receives an Employment Offer?

After a long and rigorous job search, receiving an employment offer can be exciting. However, it’s essential to take the time to carefully review and consider the offer before accepting it. Once the candidate receives an employment offer, the candidate typically has some time to consider it and decide whether to accept it. During this period, the candidate could have queries or worries about the conditions of the offer, and they might bargain over some components, including compensation or benefits.

Receiving an employment offer is an essential step in the hiring process, and there are several steps that a candidate may take before starting their new job. The candidate can ensure a smooth transition into their new role by carefully reviewing the offer, negotiating if necessary, and completing pre-employment requirements.

If they accept the offer, the employer will typically give the candidate more details and paperwork, including an employee handbook and tax forms. Once the candidate accepts the employment offer and begins working for the company, the employer will often plan an orientation or onboarding process. This article will also discuss what happens after a candidate receives an employment offer.

Review the Employment Offer Letter: After obtaining an offer of employment, the first thing to do is read the offer letter attentively. The job title, remuneration, responsibility, and performance requirements, as well as any non-disclosure and non-compete agreements, a termination clause, and the acceptance of the offer, should all be mentioned in this letter. Ensure that you fully comprehend the terms and conditions of the offer by carefully reading each section of the offer letter.

Consider the Offer: Take some time to think about the offer after reading the offer letter. Consider whether the pay and perks align with your expectations and whether the performance requirements and job duties are realistic and in line with your career objectives. Please don’t hesitate to contact the employer with any queries or qualms about the offer.

Negotiating the Offer: If the candidate is dissatisfied with the conditions of the employment offer, they may choose to speak with the employer about their concerns. This could involve negotiating over the pay, perks, or other terms and conditions of employment.

Completing Pre-Employment Requirements:  Prior to beginning a new job, the candidate may be required to fulfill pre-employment obligations depending on the company. A background check, a drug test, or other pertinent checks may be a part of this.

Accepting the Employment Offer: After carefully considering the offer, you can choose to accept the offer. If you accept the offer, sign and return the offer letter to the employer within the specified timeframe.

Declining the Offer: The candidate must notify the company promptly if they choose not to accept the job offer. This enables the employer to continue hiring if more suitable candidates emerge.

Questions or Concerns: The candidate should speak with the employer if they have any queries or worries concerning the job offer or the onboarding procedure. It’s critical to provide any clarifications before beginning the work to prevent confusion or dispute later on.

Receive Additional Information: The employer will often give you more details once you accept the offer, such as an employee handbook or other pertinent corporate policies. They might also establish a start date and provide guidelines for your first day on the job.

Onboarding Process (Orientation and Training): The candidate typically undergoes an onboarding procedure after accepting the offer and beginning employment. The candidate may be required to attend orientation or training sessions before starting their new work to gain more knowledge about the organization, their responsibility, and any pertinent regulations or procedures regarding the workplace.

Attending Orientation and Training: The candidate may be required to participate in orientation or training sessions before beginning their new work to gain more knowledge about the organization, their responsibility, and any pertinent regulations or procedures.

Starting the New Job:  After completing all pre-employment criteria, the candidate can commence their new work and start their career with the employer.

Offer Letter vs. Employment Letter

An offer letter and an employment letter are both part of the final stages of the job application process.

While they both include details about the job, they serve different purposes. An employment contract makes everything in the offer letter legally binding. You typically get the employment contract when you start onboarding, marking your official status as an employee with all associated rights. The employment letter includes a revised offer letter, the employer’s signature, stamp, and conditions for retention and termination. It only becomes legally binding when the employer signs it.

In terms of legal status, offer letters have less legal weight compared to employment contracts. An offer letter is seen more as an invitation to enter into a contract, while an employment contract is a legally binding document that outlines the rights and responsibilities of both parties, enforceable by law.

When it comes to content, offer letters provide a brief overview of employment terms, covering essentials like job title, start date, and compensation. Employment contracts, in contrast, go into more detail, outlining a comprehensive framework for the employment relationship, including job responsibilities, working hours, non-compete agreements, intellectual property rights, and confidentiality.

In the hiring process, offer letters play a crucial role by formally offering the job to candidates, giving them a chance to review terms before accepting. Employment contracts, which come after accepting the offer letter, are the legally binding agreements that set the terms and conditions for the employment relationship. It’s worth noting that while you can back out of an offer letter before committing to a new job, reneging on an employment contract can lead to legal consequences.


An employment offer is significant for both the employer and the potential employee. For the employer, it represents the culmination of an extensive recruitment process and the prospect of adding new talent and skills to the organization.

For the employee, it is an opportunity to showcase their abilities, secure gainful employment, and advance their career. Getting a job offer is a significant turning point in one’s career.

An Employment Offer to a candidate stands for the culmination of the effort, commitment, and skill a person has developed during their education, training, and job experience. An employment offer is more than just a chance to get a job; it’s also a chance to join a firm, collaborate with like-minded people, help the business succeed, and further your career.

An employment offer is an exciting opportunity for individuals to join a company and grow professionally. It is crucial to consider various factors before accepting an offer and to negotiate terms that align with one’s expectations and goals. While accepting an offer is a significant milestone, it is vital to continue to work hard and demonstrate value to ensure continued success in the organization. In case you want to get your employment offer letter reviewed, please feel free to get in touch with our commercial lawyers for customized consultation.

In case you are immigrating to Norway for employment purposes or to any other European country, then you must review the employment offer as well as the immigration requirements for different countries.


Is It Possible to Negotiate an Employment Offer Letter?

Absolutely, candidates have the opportunity to negotiate aspects of their employment offer, particularly the salary, even after formally receiving the offer letter. The candidate is entitled to fair compensation aligned with their expertise and experience in the respective field. While offer letters are not legally binding, this flexibility can benefit you. 

Who Can Assess an Employment Contract?

For a thorough evaluation of an employment contract’s legal compliance, completeness, and fairness, it is advisable to engage an employment lawyer. Employment lawyers typically offer services that encompass consultation, review and analysis, proposed revisions, and communication through memos and calls. The cost of the review is determined based on factors such as your employment history, details about the new role, your priorities, and specific questions related to the contract review.

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