JOB SEARCH / JUL. 23, 2015
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The First 5 Things You Should Ask When Starting a New Job

Looking for a new job can be a long process. So once you’re offered a position, you might jump for joy and accept the job with no questions asked. But even if you know you’re going to take an offered position, it’s okay to ask questions when starting a new job. You’ll know what to expect from a position, and asking questions can alleviate misunderstandings.

Here’s a look at the first five questions you should ask when starting a new job.

See Also: 5 Worst Ways to Start a New Job

1. When Is My Start Date?

If your start date wasn’t discussed during the interview, make sure you ask your employer as soon as you’re offered the job. This ensures you’re both on the same page. Your employer might think you’re available to start right away, yet you need to give your current employer your two weeks’ notice.

2. What Are My Work Hours?

Don’t assume you’ll be working a traditional 9-to-5 job. Work hours vary from employer to employer, and some jobs have flexible work schedules. Instead of a traditional 9-to-5, you might have to work from 8 to 5 or 8:30 to 5:30. Also, make sure you’re clear about your lunch break. Do you have a one-hour or a 30-minute break?

3. What Medical Benefits Will I Receive?

Likewise, you shouldn’t assume medical benefits will be offered by your employer. If this topic didn’t come up during the interview, ask before you start the job. Some employers provide an employee with full health and dental coverage, and perhaps a percentage of their family’s coverage. On the other hand, other employers only pay a percentage of healthcare or they require employees to pay it themselves.

4. When Will I Be Eligible to Enroll in the 401(k) Plan?

The sooner you start planning for retirement, the better. Ask the employer if there’s a 401(k) plan. If so, when will you be eligible to enroll? Some companies make new employees wait 3 to 6 months before they’re eligible to participate. If you have an existing 401(k) plan with a former employee, you can roll this money into a new plan or withdraw the funds and open an individual retirement account.

5. Will the Company Reimburse Me for Moving Expenses?

If you’re relocating for a new job, ask the company about reimbursement for moving expenses. Depending on the size of the company and its financial health, you might receive reimbursement for hiring a moving company and travel expenses like flights and hotel accommodations. If the company doesn’t offer reimbursement, you can write off work-related moving expenses on your tax return and reduce your tax liability.

See Also: 7 Signs Your Job Interview Was Successful

Landing a new job can put an end to your financial worries but, although you’re thankful for the opportunity, that doesn’t mean you can’t ask questions for clarification. Transitioning into a new position is easier when you know what to expect.

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