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Painter and Associates Blog


Why An Employment Offer Letter is Necessary

Recently, Harvard Business Review published an article analyzing mismatches in offers of employment and the actual responsibilities and scope for which the person was hired[1]  The authors found that one of the reasons mismatches occur and lead to disappointment for both the employer and new employee is that the actual job responsibilities do not match how the employer described the position.  The authors recommended that one of the means to improve results for both the employer and prospective employee is to make sure that the prospective employee and employer are truly on the same page as to the responsibilities and functions of the position for which the prospective employee is considering.

In order to avoid such misunderstanding, protect yourself or business, and avoid any potential legal liability is to have an employment offer letter issued by the business to the prospective employee.  Once a mutual understanding is reached by the parties and set forth in the employment offer letter, both parties should sign the letter.


A good employment offer letter covers the following points as outlined by Richard Harroch in Forbes Magazine:

  • The particular job offer
  • The responsibilities of the job
  • The salary and the benefits
  • That the employment is “at will," meaning the employee can quit or the employer can terminate him or her at any time
  • That the employee is required to sign a Confidentiality and Invention Assignment Agreement
  • That the letter constitutes the entire agreement of the parties, and can only be amended in the future in writing, signed by the employer and the employee
  • That any disputes will be handled exclusively by confidential binding arbitration.

Painter & Associates has the experience to assist both businesses and prospective employees to develop an employment offer letter that will provide the best opportunity for a hiring decision to be successful.

[1] Morgan, Neil and Whitler, Kimberly Why CMOs Never Last. Harvard Business Review July-August 2017.


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