Jump to content

Received verbal job offer but no job offer letter- after 6 weeks

Updated | Posted
Nurse Beth Nurse Beth, MSN (Columnist) Educator Columnist Innovator Expert Nurse

Specializes in Med Surg, Tele, ICU, Ortho. Has 30 years experience.

Hello Nurse Beth,

I’ve been in the interview process for a certain NP clinic job for approximately 6.5 weeks now. The MD of the clinic proposed the position to me and does not want to interview anyone else and the director has also approved my hire. What has been holding up the whole thing has been determining the site location-which has been resolved, and the positions’ involvement with the union (which I do not want to be a part of). They are in the midst of re-writing the role so I will not have union affiliation. Is there ever utility in a pleasantly-worded email to HR requesting an offer deadline? I do need to know before the end of the month as I work multiple jobs and need to provide my availability/and or resignation. Thank you.

Dear Hold Up,

Yes, it is reasonable to request an offer deadline, and you need to do so. Often candidates don't want to be seen as being a pest, or don't want to risk sounding desperate, but if done right, a request for an offer letter can actually help move things along.

Six and a half weeks is more than enough time to expect an offer letter after being given a verbal offer, and the long timeline speaks to their lack of planning and organisation, or perhaps prematurity in making the verbal offer.

The MD wants you, but the MD did not have all the details of the position worked out before approaching you (surprise!). Sometimes jobs are verbally promised before there's even funding for the position. Yours may be a newly created position. Newly created  positions take longer to hammer out all the details, and much as the delays in your situation sound reasonable, nothing is certain until it's certain. 

The problem is that this could be resolved soon, or it could drag out even longer. In the meantime, you are in limbo with no guarantees. In a worst case scenario, they are stringing you along and their plans have changed. This doesn't seem to be the case in your circumstance, although some would advise you to keep applying to other companies in case this doesn't pan out. Let's assume the best and see if you can get this moving with the help of a short, nicely-worded email.

Compose an email with a subject such as Following Up on Nurse Practitioner Position.

Dear Ms. Adler,

Thank you so much for offering me the Nurse Practitioner position. I’m looking forward to joining the team at St. John's Clinic and am really excited about the role.

One request: When can I anticipate the offer letter? I’d love to look it over and know the timeline for my decision.

I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Thank you again,

Ashley

This should gently but firmly put them on notice that a timeline is expected. It's a direct question that begs a direct answer, which is the goal. If they really want you, they will scramble to make this right. If they dodge the answer, then unfortunately that signals  a lack of urgency on the organisation's part to move forward with this position.

Best wishes,

Nurse Beth