How to Respond to a Software Engineering Job Offer

Tips on how to negotiate salary, start date & benefits and how to respond to a verbal offer

Phil from 4 day week


As a software developer, you know that you have a high-demand skillset. When you move toward negotiations for a new position, it can be difficult to know what to say when you get an offer, or even “worse”: what to say when you have already accepted a job but got a better offer elsewhere. Either way, when negotiating a job offer you may want to make sure you’re in the best position possible to get the benefits you need, from the salary you’re asking for to the health insurance and other benefits you know you deserve.

Negotiation in order to receive the benefits you know you deserve may prove critical. Unfortunately, as many as 56% of workers do not attempt to negotiate when they receive a job offer.

Follow these tips to make sure you maximise the salary, benefits and working arrangements when you get an offer for a new job:

1. Firstly, know what you’re worth.

You should understand that most software developers under appreciate their worth. Whether it’s Java, Python, Rust, Golang or good old Javascript, developers are difficult and expensive to hire.

Most developers would like to know what salary to expect before interviewing but unfortunately this isn’t always possible. And whether you should ask ask about this during the interview, we think this is a bad idea. During an interview you mostly want to emphasise why you are passionate about working for the company. If you mention salary this may give a bad impression.

So instead you can use tools like Glassdoor to get an estimate of the likely salary. If the company doesn’t have any data on Glassdoor for your position, have a look at salary standards for your industry, your job, and your local area.

In addition to looking at salary range, you may also want to consider factors like what benefits other, similar businesses in the industry are offering and how they may fit your needs and how your education or certifications should influence hiring practices. Those simple steps can go a long way toward setting you up for success in your negotiations.

2. Make sure you look at the whole package.