5 red flags to watch for in your contract of employment

Before you sign on the dotted line, it's important to watch out for some red flags in your contract of employment.

Unlocking tech talent stories

March 9, 2023

Are you a developer or an IT professional about to sign a contract of employment? Congratulations! This is a big step towards your career growth. However, before you sign on the dotted line, it’s important to watch out for some red flags in your contract of employment. 

5 red flags to watch for in contracts of employment

1. Non-compete clauses

Basically, they’re clauses that can limit your ability to work for a competitor or start your own business in the same industry for a certain amount of time after you leave your current job. Although it’s understandable that companies want to protect their intellectual property and trade secrets, some non-compete clauses can be too restrictive and may make it difficult for you to find work in your field. So, if you come across a non-compete clause in your contract, make sure to carefully review it and consider seeking legal advice if you have any concerns.

2. Ambiguous job description

Job descriptions are super important for both employers and employees as they lay out the scope of work, responsibilities, and expectations of the job. If the job description in your contract is unclear or vague, it can cause a lot of confusion and misunderstandings in the workplace. To avoid any issues, make sure your job description is specific and matches your skills and experience. This way, you can hit the ground running and be confident in your role.

3. Unfair termination clause

Termination clauses set out the terms for how your job can be ended, such as notice periods and severance pay. However, some contracts may have an unfair termination clause that could limit your options for finding new employment or receiving fair compensation if you’re let go. So, it’s really important to read and understand the termination clause before you sign anything. That way, you can make sure you’re comfortable with the terms and prepared for any potential changes down the road.

4. Unreasonable working hours

Your contract should outline your working hours, including any overtime or weekend work. Some contracts may require you to work unreasonable hours, which can lead to burnout and negatively impact your health and well-being. Make sure that your contract outlines reasonable working hours and that any overtime or weekend work is compensated fairly.

5. Unfair compensation

Your contract should clearly state your salary, benefits, and any potential bonuses based on your performance. However, it’s important to be careful with contracts that offer below-market compensation or unrealistic performance targets. You deserve to be fairly compensated and aligned with industry standards. So, be sure to review your compensation package carefully before signing anything to make sure you’re comfortable with the terms. That way, you can feel confident and motivated in your role.

To sum things up, critically reviewing your future employment contract is really important. 

This document lays out all the details of your job, like what you’ll be doing, how much you’ll get paid, and when you’ll work. So read through the contract carefully and keep an eye out for anything that seems a little fishy. 

Look out for things like non-compete clauses (which might limit your future job opportunities), vague job descriptions, or clauses that make it too easy for your employer to fire you. You’ll also want to ensure that you’re getting paid fairly for the work you’ll be doing and that the hours you’ll be working are reasonable

By taking the time to review your contract carefully, you’ll be able to protect yourself and make sure you’re starting off on the right foot in your new job!

PS: don’t yet have a tech job or looking for a change? Check out these tech jobs!

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