Applying for jobs and going for interviews is an incredibly stressful time. Whether you’re applying for an internship or a permanent position, it’s daunting. You have to update your CV and cover letter. You’ll need to update your CV and online presence. You’ll want to spend some time researching the best possible answers to interview questions. And importantly, you should always for ready for a last-minute interview request.

As a student, how can you possibly know whether you’re making the right decision? How can you know whether the job you’re being offered is a good one or a terrible idea?

The people who’re doing the hiring will know what they’re looking for. They’ll know what questions to ask and will soon have an instinct about whether you’re right for the position and for the company.

Importantly, even if they think you’re right for the job, you need to know whether you actually want the position. It’s important that the job works for you. You need to be proud to say you’ve worked there. Let’s be realistic, a job can never be everything to you and should never be your whole life. But you do spend a large chunk of your life there and you should enjoy, at the very least, certain parts of the work you’re going to be doing. These are some of the factors you should consider before accepting that job offer.

Will you earn an appropriate salary?

You need to feel you’re being fairly compensated at work to feel fulfilled. If you aren’t able to cover even your most basic expenses, there’s not much chance you’ll be able to concentrate fully on your tasks. Your potential employer will likely ask you how much you’d like to earn, so be sure to give an accurate number. It’s only when you’re earning an appropriate salary that you’re able to pay your bills, save and invest for your future, and have sufficient left over at the end of the month so that you can donate to an organisation which you admire, like Doctors Without Borders. Did you know they provide clean water, healthy food and medicine to the people who need assistance most?

Will you have someone to mentor you?

Someone needs to be available to you to look after your growth and progress. A mentor will make sure you’re on the right track and give you advice about what you can do to improve. They’ll point out any errors you’re making and take time to offer assistance when you need it.

Will you feel challenged by your work?

When your work becomes boring and predictable, you’ll have little enjoyment in your day. It’s important that you’re challenged and can learn by solving problems. This will also improve your skills set, making you a valuable asset for your current employer and those in your future.

Are there opportunities for promotion?

After you’ve been sitting in your seat for a while, you’ll want to be considered for new positions and opportunities. If you’re overlooked each time a new position opens up, you’ll soon start to feel like you need to look elsewhere.

Are there chances for you to become more involved?

Similarly, you’ll want to be considered and involved when new projects come along. This might just show off a side of your skills which you employer wasn’t aware you had. This can also be beneficial to you, as you’ll see new opportunities for yourself.

Will your work be appreciated?

It’s essential that your line manager appreciate the work you’re doing and show you that you’re valued. They should congratulate you and let you know you’ve done good work when you’ve completed a task. All of us enjoy being told our hard work is appreciated.

Will your future employers trust you?

As you become more involved and are eventually promoted, you’ll begin to feel like your employer trusts you. Research shows that when trust is lacking in the workplace, workers soon become disengaged and start looking elsewhere. Trust allows workers to perform well in the workplace, so it’s important you feel you’re trusted.

How convenient is this position?

It sounds like a silly question. But it’s important and will contribute to your happiness. Consider for instance, how long it takes you to travel to work each day. If you’re travelling for four hours on the bus or train each day, you’ll soon stop enjoying your work. Convenience has been proven to be an essential factor when choosing a workplace. You’ll enjoy living close to work so much, soon you’ll never be able to imagine your life in any other way.

Deciding that it’s time to start working for the first time, can lead to an exciting journey ahead. But it is important that you ask yourself what you really want so you know you’re making the right decision. You need to be 100% certain of your choice before making the decision to start searching for a new job.