Making the Most of a Job Switch

Ready to move on? Don't forget these points:

SALARY Look to hike your salary at least 15% before considering a move. If you risk losing a bonus because you're leaving before yearend, try to get your new employer to give you a signing bonus.

MEDICAL BENEFITS Make sure your medical coverage will continue before you leap. Nearly half of companies have a waiting period before new medical benefits kick in. Try to negotiate an exemption, or ask if you can pay for coverage during the interim.

STOCK OPTIONS If you stand to walk away from a sizable number of unexercised stock options, ask your new company to make you whole, either through a cash award or stock package.

RETIREMENT PLANS If possible, wait until you are fully vested in your retirement plans before you change jobs. You'll face hefty penalties for cashing in a 401(k) when you leave. Keep it where it is, or transfer it directly into your new employer's plan or an individual retirement account.

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Updated Oct. 2, 1997 by bwwebmaster
Copyright 1997, Bloomberg L.P.
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