What To Look For in an Employment Contract

    When it comes to starting a new job, there is a lot to consider. One of the most overlooked aspects of any new job is reading the employment contract. An employment contract is important for a number of reasons, ranging from understanding the duties of the job to knowing why someone can be fired. Of course, an employment contract can also be a dense document and there is a lot to read. In particular, there are a few critical points that everyone should focus on.

    First, read through the title of the job its description. The two should match. If they don’t, this is something to bring up to the supervisor or the human resources department before signing on the dotted line. In some cases, if the two don’t match it is a simple clerical error. On the other hand, this could be an opportunity to express concerns because something might not add up. If the job isn’t what someone is signing up for, then this is an opportunity to walk away before being bound to a written contract. For example, some people might think they are interviewing for a manager position when the job title suddenly changes to “lead.” While this might not sound like much, this can have an adverse impact on someone’s salary.

    Furthermore, it is always a good idea to read through the compensation section as well. People think that the salary printed in the contract is the same as what they agreed on during the interview; however, mistakes happen. It is a good idea to check the salary section and make sure it matches what was expected. Otherwise, people can end up surrendering a significant amount of money by overlooking a mistake in the salary section of the employment contract.

    It is a good idea to take a look at the other benefits as well. For example, if the employer offers overtime, be sure to see when this kicks in. Does overtime start when someone works more than 8 hours in a day? Or does this overtime kick in after crossing 40 hours in a week? This is something to consider. Then, how does the wage increase once overtime kicks in? Is it time and a half? Or is it double time? Does it triple for holidays?

    Finally, also take a look at how time off is handled. Is it paid time off? Is time off earned as people work more hours? Can time off be swapped for additional pay? These are some of the other key points to consider. Anyone with questions should make sure to discuss this with an employment lawyer. Do not overlook anything in the employment contract.