Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

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guitarguy
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Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by guitarguy »

I interviewed at MegaCorp yesterday and thought the interview went very well. The job looks very interesting and my qualifications and experience are very applicable to the position. Plus I have an "in" via a recommendation from a "high-up" specialist in this particular group. Of course nothing is set in stone, but I'm very optimistic and excited about receiving a job offer.

First, I (somehow...and I don't know how) forgot to ask a very important question in the interview...the issue of work/life balance and how many hours are generally required for the position. I asked a million other insightful (if I do say so myself) questions and I liked the answers I got from them. It's getting to me that I absolutely can't believe I forgot to ask how many hours are generally required. Now...I certainly understand crises situations and things change...and I don't want to appear as someone who is lazy and not willing to put in a little extra time when necessary because that's not me...but I also don't want to get into something where 50-60 hours a week or something is the expected norm. How do I ask this question at this point? Just casually mention I forgot to ask...yada yada? Also, I'm not sure how future conversations will go; I don't know if I'll be in contact with the recruiter or hiring manager. If I get a follow up contact/offer/whatever from the recruiter (who won't know about the job hours requirements) how do I bring that up? Or do I just go and contact the hiring manager directly?

Second, I've read a lot of articles on negotiation. I'm traditionally not a job hopper (4 years at first engineering job, 6 years at current job), so I view this opportunity as one of the few I expect to have in my lifetime where I can really get a serious pay raise. Now...I want to convey strongly that $$ isn't the driving motivator for this new job. There is great potential for career growth and wonderful opportunity to learn and grow. HOWEVER, I don't want to pass up on my "shot" to get the best possible deal I can get.

I did a lot of research on benchmarking websites that outlay salaries for this job title and in this geographic area. I researched on 6-7 websites and have data that shows an average of $80.5k. I also have data that is company specific to MegaCorp that shows an average of $87k. Based on the quick salary discussion with the recruiter, I expect an offer to land somewhere in the $77k range. I was open in saying that I was looking for something "in the mid 80s". Hopefully it wasn't a mistake to discuss that...so many articles say NEVER MENTION A NUMBER...but I figured I'm looking for what I want and if they're not in the ballpark then I might as well not waste anyone's time. My thought is that I'd be very happy with something in the $80-85k range. Hiring managers, of course with the most polite attitude and tone in mind, would asking for something in the $82-87k range be appropriate?

If they say there is no room for additional base salary and the offer is above my rock bottom requirement of $75k, I'm thinking of asking something like, "I might be willing to compromise on the salary if the overall compensation package is right. Would there be a way to discuss an extra week of vacation or a signing bonus in lieu of the additional salary?" My reason for mentioning 2 things at once is I would definitely prefer the vacation, but I know with many large companies vacation time can be tough to negotiate. So if they say no to that I've also already brought up a signing bonus as an additional way to go.

This will be my first time negotiating salary and overall compensation package without going through a head hunter and them doing it for me. I want to get the best deal possible without conveying that money is the biggest driving factor here. And an additional thing that's in my favor is I already have a great job that I like and I'm currently in the process of getting a promotion here. So I'm not in a super rush to head out the door. As exciting as this new job looks, if the package isn't right or if I have any reservations I am prepared to walk away from the table.
jackholloway
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by jackholloway »

If you want a number that is not seemingly on the table, say so. You do not want them to lowball you without realizing that they are.

For work-life balance, wait for the offer to be on the table. I would ask the hiring manager post offer. I spoke with every one of my team members about on call/pager, extended hours, when I do and do not expect to reach you after hours, etc. I am a bit unusual for a manager at MegaCorp in that I do not expect you to see weekend email, and I encourage you to disable work accounts on your cell while on vacation. I am sad that this is unusual, but people need break time.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by technovelist »

I can't recommend "Rites of Passage at $100K+" by John Lucht highly enough. You don't have to be in that salary range to get a lot of invaluable information from that book.
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guitarguy
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by guitarguy »

jackholloway wrote:If you want a number that is not seemingly on the table, say so. You do not want them to lowball you without realizing that they are.

For work-life balance, wait for the offer to be on the table. I would ask the hiring manager post offer. I spoke with every one of my team members about on call/pager, extended hours, when I do and do not expect to reach you after hours, etc. I am a bit unusual for a manager at MegaCorp in that I do not expect you to see weekend email, and I encourage you to disable work accounts on your cell while on vacation. I am sad that this is unusual, but people need break time.
Thanks for the recommendation. I'll wait to ask my work/life balance question until an offer is presented to me. I'm told that this company will first give me a verbal offer. After receiving this, along with all the details of the benefit package and such, this is the right time to contact the hiring manager and get the final details about the work/life balance issue, right?

After getting that info, then I will plan on asking for 24 hrs to review the offer so I can make an informed decision, and then decide if I want to counter or not. Does that sound like an appropriate plan of action here? I'm not really sure about the etiquette of when exactly to start the negotiating process. My thought would be after the verbal offer so we don't have to go back and forth with multiple written offers...right?
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Watty
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by Watty »

guitarguy wrote:I researched on 6-7 websites and have data that shows an average of $80.5k. I also have data that is company specific to MegaCorp that shows an average of $87k.

The averages are pretty worthless, what you want to try to figure out what the range is for that position so even if you don't get hired in at the high end of the range you will know you have room for future increases.

http://search.dilbert.com/search?w=aver ... &x=35&y=15
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by zebrafish »

I agree about waiting until after the offer. I always wonder about people who ask this question-- why are they asking this? Are they just going to come here and slack?

I'm not sure that is a snafu, actually. Post-offer, you can probably get this type of information. But I think you have to be careful how you ask this as not to come across as asking "how little do I have to work?"
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frugaltype
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by frugaltype »

guitarguy wrote: Thanks for the recommendation. I'll wait to ask my work/life balance question until an offer is presented to me. I'm told that this company will first give me a verbal offer.
Verbal offers are meaningless. Only offers on paper mean something.

I would talk to your contact in the group about what it's like to work there. I think you can do that without sounding like you expect an offer, which you may not get. Something like, I am really interested in working here blah blah if I get an offer, and seeing all the exciting things the company is doing. I was wondering what it's like to work here on a day to day basis - I'm used to working long hours as projects become due, or to fight fires, but I've also seen places where 80 hour work weeks are the norm all the time, and I actually have a life, so while the former is part of what I expect in an exciting job, the later is overkill, etc.

I think you can make that sound like a reasonable question as part of a larger discussion, and not like you're saying you don't want to work hard.

Also, getting back in touch with your contact and emphasizing how much the possible job interests you, that's not a bad thing - enthusiasm always counts.
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tractorguy
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by tractorguy »

+1 on asking your higher up friend about work life balance. However, my experience at a megacorp is that it can vary widely by department. Even within the same department it can change when there is a top management shuffle. The division vice-president seemed to set expectations for his direct reports and then it just flowed down.

By all means be prepared to ask for higher salary and a hiring bonus. I wouldn't even think about moving for less than a 10% increase over my present salary. I'd ask for 20% and settle for 15%. If you're in high demand, a hiring bonus is very much possible. HR departments are more likely to give out a hiring bonus than a higher salary because its a one time thing and doesn't impact the rest of the work force. Higher salaries are harder to get because HR is concerned about frustrating all of your co-workers if they pay you more. At megacorps, each job title will have a defined salary range. Hiring supervisors are told to try to get people to come in at the midpoint or lower of the range so that the new employees have some room for salary growth before they hit the ceiling. Once you hit the ceiling, you can't get more than a cost of living raise unless you are promoted. Hitting the ceiling can be a huge de-motivator so no manager wants that to happen.

Extra vacation is unlikely and I wouldn't ask for it. Again, HR departments are really, really reluctant to give one person a perk that is going to rock the boat for the rest of the workforce. The megacorp I worked for had the vacation allowance specified in the employee manual and it was expected that every supervisor would enforce it. We had a little leeway for "compassionate leave" but absolutely no ability to give extra vacation.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by MathWizard »

Regarding expected working hours:

If you live close, or have a few days off, go by the area in the morning and after dark. See when everyone comes in in the morning
and see how many office lights are in after dark. Go by on a Sat if you have a means to detect whether lots of people are working there.

Do this by going to a nearby restaraunt, so you don't look like you are staking the place out.

Regarding the extra vacation question:

That would turn me off. I'm hiring you to work, not to take vacations.
Vacation policy is usually set company-wide to avoid all sorts of problems of appearance of favoritism.
Occasional flex-time might be the only thing I would consider. There are always situations where
a parent has to deal with kids, so flex-time can go a long way towards work-life balance. The time
must still be put in, but an occasional time-shift while still getting the work done is OK.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by jumpsalty »

I'm a recruiter and work with a fortune 500 tech company and have worked at or with others in the past. I hire exclusively engineering and product management. At large companies, you aren't going to get any negotiation power on the vacation unless you are a top level exec, and I generally wouldn't recommend doing it anyway because it makes you comes across as a guy who wants to spend more time away from work than at work. Most big companies have generous vacation policies anyway...usually 3 weeks + 2 weeks sick time for more "old school" companies and in my case we get unlimited PTO but I'm in silicon valley.

The best way to negotiate salary is really easy. First ignore online calculators that are averages, they are always wrong. You need to know from friends or other people within your industry what the going rate is for your level and experience. Second, just start high and negotiate down and don't bother with ranges. If you would be really happy with 85k, just ask for 90k to start with and let them work down to 85k. Unless you are coming in asking for double that, you cannot be too high! If they want to hire you and they don't have a backup person, they will do whatever they can to hire you - trust me! Sometimes you might even get 85k, plus an extra 5k sign-on bonus too. Best case is they say OK and you get the 90k anyway. Unless they have some specific budget, there is always a range they are hire a candidate in, but what they specifically offer depends on your performance in the interview. I would recommend just to stand firm with what you want and don't give in. If they can't pay you what you are worth and will make you happy don't accept the position.
Billionaire
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by Billionaire »

What exactly is work-life balance? I would take the answer with a grain of salt. Once you are on board, they got ya.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by nisiprius »

Billionaire wrote:What exactly is work-life balance? I would take the answer with a grain of salt. Once you are on board, they got ya.
I never figured out how to assess the corporate culture until after I'm immersed in it and committed. Straight questions just aren't going to work. And when you aren't an employee it isn't usually possible to walk in after hours just to see how many people are still hunched over in their cubes.

I've had HR people say things like "Our hours are 8:30 to 4:30 but of course you will be working much more than that," because they just want to cover themselves. It's hard to find out whether there are occasional crunches or whether it's a perpetual crunch.

You never know what your manager's tone of voice and phrasing is going to be when you say "I'm really sorry, but my kid is still running a temperature and I need to stay home another day" until it happens...

It's just the opposite of when they ask you "how do you respond to pressure?" You just are not going to say "I hate it and I work poorly under it and it makes me angry when a manager overcommits and doesn't how how to schedule realistically. Angry angry angry!" Of course not. You say "Pressure? I love it. I can't get enough of it. The reason I left my last job was I was getting bored because there wasn't enough pressure."

They are rarely going to say "We don't believe in work-life balance. We expect 100% commitment to the company 24x7. If we wanted you to have a spouse, we'd have issued you one." They are always going to say "We strongly encourage our employees to keep a good work-life balance, because that makes them better employees. In fact, look, we even have little brochures, here, why don't you take one now, 'Keeping Your Balance,' and another one, 'Manage Your Stress,' and, oh, this is a good one, 'Eat Better, Work Better.' But of course we hope you will pitch in with a little extra to help the company from time to time when we need it."
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by DRiP Guy »

zebrafish wrote:I agree about waiting until after the offer. I always wonder about people who ask this question-- why are they asking this? Are they just going to come here and slack?

I'm not sure that is a snafu, actually. Post-offer, you can probably get this type of information. But I think you have to be careful how you ask this as not to come across as asking "how little do I have to work?"
Saved me from writing the same thing.

As an ex-hiring manager, that question would perk my ears up, especially if handled inexpertly. If I had two equally qualified candidates, and one had alerted me to potential availability/commitment/drive/family issues by indicating they expected a 'normal' 40 hour week, versus someone who was silent on the potential for any issue on that front, then guess who gets the nod?

As to salary perhaps being a few thousands lower than your own hopes, IF this is the right company, AND you feel it's the right job, in the right area, then I'd let it go until the firm offer is made, and expect that raises, promotions, stock options, benefits, etc would be in my future; that is if as you say, the position turns into a long term one. But if it doesn't, then your total economic loss due solely to salary differential will still be low.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by Colorado13 »

tractorguy wrote:Extra vacation is unlikely and I wouldn't ask for it. Again, HR departments are really, really reluctant to give one person a perk that is going to rock the boat for the rest of the workforce. The megacorp I worked for had the vacation allowance specified in the employee manual and it was expected that every supervisor would enforce it. We had a little leeway for "compassionate leave" but absolutely no ability to give extra vacation.
Much of the advice on this topic will vary based on the company. I'm an exception to the above - I asked for and received extra vacation time when I accepted my current job offer. My org also has an employee manual that specifies vacation time but until you receive a "no" response, consider (nearly) everything negotiable.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by BigMoneyGrip »

Prior to the offer you could ask a question like "What are the characteristics of the A-players on your team?". They may or may not mention long hours, weekends, always responds to blackberry emails promptly.

After the offer, you could be more direct and ask about work/life balance.
- "Is crunch time the exception or the norm?"
- "I see you have a company issued blackberry...what are the expectations for responding to emails?"
- "When you say 25% travel - is that 1-2 days per week, 1 week per month, or 3 solid months per year?"
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guitarguy
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by guitarguy »

zebrafish wrote:I agree about waiting until after the offer. I always wonder about people who ask this question-- why are they asking this? Are they just going to come here and slack?

I'm not sure that is a snafu, actually. Post-offer, you can probably get this type of information. But I think you have to be careful how you ask this as not to come across as asking "how little do I have to work?"
This is exactly how I don't want to come off...because I'm genuinely not opposed to putting in some extra time here and there. I'm not looking to come in and be a slacker. But I am looking for a normal 40 hr work week, during which I bust my butt and get a lot of good work done, and after which I can go and enjoy the rest of my life. And when a true crisis arises...no problem to put in some extra time there.

BUT...I've also been down the road where an "emergency" popping up was a daily occurrence. Engineers working 7-7 and eating their sad cheese sandwich while they worked through lunch every day was the norm. How about staying late 4 nights this week. And next week and the week after until the project is done. And oh by the way the next project will be the same way. Um...no. No thank you. I have a life outside of work and I actually like my wife and my family...so getting into something where those kind of hours are the norm is not worth all the money in the world to me. (OK I'd work 60 hours for $1MM/yr+ I guess...)

My current job requires almost no OT, this is the one thing I'm scared of losing if I leave. I really mean it when I say "here and there" I will be perfectly fine with staying late when needed. But long regular hours will make me miserable and will jade me from respecting my superiors because I know they are full of it. If everything is an emergency then there is no longer such thing as an emergency. And if the work atmosphere is constant crises mode then higher up management is a joke. (At least in my experience. 4-week projects that need to be done in 2 weeks to be profitable? Yeah...nice planning.)
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by Random Poster »

jumpsalty wrote:Most big companies have generous vacation policies anyway...usually 3 weeks + 2 weeks sick time for more "old school" companies and in my case we get unlimited PTO but I'm in silicon valley.
I find it rather depressing that 3 weeks of vacation is considered to be "generous."
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by guitarguy »

Random Poster wrote:
jumpsalty wrote:Most big companies have generous vacation policies anyway...usually 3 weeks + 2 weeks sick time for more "old school" companies and in my case we get unlimited PTO but I'm in silicon valley.
I find it rather depressing that 3 weeks of vacation is considered to be "generous."
Me too. I've worked at my current company for a while and I get 3 weeks now, plus a fair amount of holidays. But I certainly wish 4 weeks was the minimum. But whatever.

MegaCorp has probably twice as many paid holidays off as I do now which is a big plus, but requires the use of 4 of my 15 vacation days for the July 4th week because they shut down. That is the only reason I was considering asking for an additional week...I'm used to having 3 weeks to use at my disposal. I certainly hope a hiring manager wouldn't take it badly if I asked this. To me it doesn't automatically point to "man this guy wants to be at home more than at work." To me it's a reasonable question...and to me...isn't the worst that can happen is they just say no? Would they really take asking as an insult?? :confused

For those of you that are "in the know" I may have just gave away what company this is with some of the above details...but I'm trying to remain semi-anonymous here so I'd appreciate it not being called out.

The HR recruiter did say we have "unlimited sick time"...but come on...aside from being really sick or having major surgery and an occasional personal day...nobody is going to consider that a real perk and go "hot damn I'm gonna take 25 sick days"... :twisted:
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by edge »

I thought you knew someone who works there? Why don't you ask them?
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tyrion
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by tyrion »

Chiming in on 'unlimited sick time'-

My company has the so-called 'unlimited sick time'. In reality, if you go over 5 days per year you get to have your boss talk to you about your sick leave. Over 10 days a year and HR talks to you (and maybe it goes on some formal record.

At the same time, there are signs in the kitchen telling you to stay home if you're sick so you don't put others at risk.

I'm guessing the company wants the best of both worlds - stay away from the office if you're sick, but make sure you work from home so you don't accrue any sick time. Or you'll get a lecture.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by guitarguy »

One thing I should add...the general culture of the company is to get in early and get out early. I've heard that from a number of people over multiple years and buildings/locations.

Regarding asking my professor (who is the "high-up" contact I have in this group, and the one who specially referred me for this position even before it was available) about the work schedule...I'm a little nervous to ask it because I don't want to come off sounding lazy. This guy may work lots of extended hours...I don't know. He seems like work is his life based on his work and then teaching schedule! Of course I'm speculating...he is a very personable guy too so maybe he wouldn't respond badly at all. I dunno.

I think maybe the best route will be to wait for the offer (if it comes, of course) and then bring up a couple of additional questions to the hiring manager. Perhaps bringing up "normal work hours" would be better than asking how many hours are generally required for the week. Something like, "I forgot to ask what the normal work hours are like and if the actual start and end timing is flexible? Of course my classes are all in the evening, but as you know I'm still finishing up my M.S. and a little flexibility to come in a bit earlier and then allow for drive time to class in the evening would really help." Then he proceeds to say, "yeah we're a little flexible there" and then I can follow up with "so like a 730-430 or something would be an appropriate schedule?" This will give me a pretty good answer about what kind of hours are expected, and I won't have directly asked that question. I also specifically mentioned 730-430 based on the culture of the company and it being an early start / early end type of place, and plus another colleague that I know that works in that building (but in a different group) and is on that schedule, says it's very quiet if he stays passed 430.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by Bacchus01 »

You can tell a lot about work-life without asking the question.

Drive by the place at 7:30 AM and again at 5:30 PM. How many cars are in the parking lot? Do the same on the weekend. That is a great proxy for this.

Other questions that are less direct
"What are the normal hours that people are in the office?"
"Is there technology to be able to work from home if the need arises?"
"I see there is no gym or cafeteria, where do people go for lunch or to work out during the day?"


As for vacation, I disagree with a poster above. Vacation is one of THE most negotiable benefits--often even more than salary. I ALWAYS ask for more vacation, although I rarely use it all. For my current role, I asked for 5 weeks. They gave me 4 because we already get 15 paid holidays, including shutting down the week around Xmas/New Years. I was hired October 1st and with vacation/holiday, I was off 4 full weeks between then and Jan 2nd.

I usually wait until after the offer is made to bring out the questions that might make we want to not take the offer. Work/life balance, boss dynamics, turnover, raise periods and usual merit amounts, travel plans (can I fly first-class for international?), etc. Wait until you have them on the hook. They won't pull the offer for those questions.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by mass_biker »

If you want to pursue a "great potential for career growth and wonderful opportunity to learn and grow" be ready to work more than 40 hours a week and go above and beyond. Otherwise you're just pack fodder. And those learning/growth opportunities will be far and few between.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by guitarguy »

Bacchus01 wrote:You can tell a lot about work-life without asking the question.

Drive by the place at 7:30 AM and again at 5:30 PM. How many cars are in the parking lot? Do the same on the weekend. That is a great proxy for this.
This would certainly be the case at a small company. There are 3500 people at the facility I'll be working at though. Also from what I'm told, people work all kinds of varying hours and there are always people coming and going. It would be really tough to get even a general idea at this facility. I don't even know where the employee parking lot is. They are currently in the middle of adding a $200M expansion to the facility and there is tons of construction going on. For my interview I found the visitors lot which was parked out to the BOONIES by 815am.
Bacchus01 wrote:As for vacation, I disagree with a poster above. Vacation is one of THE most negotiable benefits--often even more than salary. I ALWAYS ask for more vacation, although I rarely use it all. For my current role, I asked for 5 weeks. They gave me 4 because we already get 15 paid holidays, including shutting down the week around Xmas/New Years. I was hired October 1st and with vacation/holiday, I was off 4 full weeks between then and Jan 2nd.
This can vary depending on the company I'm sure. I've heard/read that it's much easier to negotiate at smaller companies...but who knows. In my little interview orientation we got the rundown on how much vacation would be given (pro-rated based on hire date, but given my potential hire date I'll have nothing to worry about there)...so it might be pretty set in stone. But they also did say (for whatever it's worth) that they DO try to promote a good work/life balance. They have a very nice cafeteria and a cheap gym both on site as well.
Bacchus01 wrote:I usually wait until after the offer is made to bring out the questions that might make we want to not take the offer. Work/life balance, boss dynamics, turnover, raise periods and usual merit amounts, travel plans (can I fly first-class for international?), etc. Wait until you have them on the hook. They won't pull the offer for those questions.
This seems like great advice. Some of those questions will be good to ask. I just want to make sure the hiring manager doesn't feel "attacked" by a barrage of questions like this...although...none are inappropriate.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by leonard »

Perhaps pose your question as one of "availability". Some companies have an expectation - sometimes implied, sometimes explicit - that employees be available via cell phone at all hours of the day. Some groups get started at 8 am, some at 9, and some at 7.

So, you could get a feel for the time demands by just asking about what availability is expected from coworkers, project team members, and management.

I have a feeling you will get your answer to how much people work - in the course of the answer to this question.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by jumpsalty »

Random Poster wrote:
jumpsalty wrote:Most big companies have generous vacation policies anyway...usually 3 weeks + 2 weeks sick time for more "old school" companies and in my case we get unlimited PTO but I'm in silicon valley.
I find it rather depressing that 3 weeks of vacation is considered to be "generous."
Generous probably isn't the best word. I should have said average. Many smaller companies don't even offer 3 weeks. Besides, when you consider 3 weeks vacation plus sick time (cool managers will let you use some of this as extra vacation) and 11 paid holidays is over a month off each year.
Random Poster
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by Random Poster »

jumpsalty wrote:
Random Poster wrote:
jumpsalty wrote:Most big companies have generous vacation policies anyway...usually 3 weeks + 2 weeks sick time for more "old school" companies and in my case we get unlimited PTO but I'm in silicon valley.
I find it rather depressing that 3 weeks of vacation is considered to be "generous."
Generous probably isn't the best word. I should have said average. Many smaller companies don't even offer 3 weeks. Besides, when you consider 3 weeks vacation plus sick time (cool managers will let you use some of this as extra vacation) and 11 paid holidays is over a month off each year.
Not to get off track or anything, but using sick time when you aren't sick is probably a good way to find yourself out of a job, regardless of how "cool" you may think that your manager is.

After all, when it has been discovered that you have been inappropriately taking sick time, it shouldn't come as too much of a surprise that your "cool" manager will suddenly express shock and dismay at your actions and allege having no knowledge of your misdeeds.

Also, counting holidays that everyone in the company is entitled (by law) to have off as part of one's vacation allotment strikes me as being somewhat shady with the truth. Vacation time, in theory, should be allowed to be used as the employee sees fit, whether that means taking off a few consecutive weeks in March, a day at a time throughout the Fall, or whatever. When holidays are pretty much scheduled to occur at the same time every year, that sorta takes away the flexibility-of-usage that vacation days are intended to provide.
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Clearly_Irrational
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by Clearly_Irrational »

Random Poster wrote:Vacation time, in theory, should be allowed to be used as the employee sees fit, whether that means taking off a few consecutive weeks in March, a day at a time throughout the Fall, or whatever. When holidays are pretty much scheduled to occur at the same time every year, that sorta takes away the flexibility-of-usage that vacation days are intended to provide.
There has been a really annoying trend lately at companies I've been at of "forced vacation" disguised as "holiday shutdown". Basically you end up having to burn all of your days or not get paid and then don't have any for later in the year.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by leonard »

Clearly_Irrational wrote:
Random Poster wrote:Vacation time, in theory, should be allowed to be used as the employee sees fit, whether that means taking off a few consecutive weeks in March, a day at a time throughout the Fall, or whatever. When holidays are pretty much scheduled to occur at the same time every year, that sorta takes away the flexibility-of-usage that vacation days are intended to provide.
There has been a really annoying trend lately at companies I've been at of "forced vacation" disguised as "holiday shutdown". Basically you end up having to burn all of your days or not get paid and then don't have any for later in the year.
There has always been a more annoying trend of people taking sly vacation around the holidays - blocking out their schedules with so many "meetings", shopping online, cutting out early, etc. - without actually scheduling the vacation and blocking their schedule as out of office. Makes it impossible for the folks left to get their input to make progress on projects - killing productivity for the folks still in the office. May as well send everyone on vacation around the holiday's anyway.
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Clearly_Irrational
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by Clearly_Irrational »

leonard wrote:There has always been a more annoying trend of people taking sly vacation around the holidays - blocking out their schedules with so many "meetings", shopping online, cutting out early, etc. - without actually scheduling the vacation and blocking their schedule as out of office. Makes it impossible for the folks left to get their input to make progress on projects - killing productivity for the folks still in the office. May as well send everyone on vacation around the holiday's anyway.
Oh, I get why it's good for employers, but it means I can't take vacation in the summer, when, you know, I might actually want to go on vacation?
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by jackholloway »

tyrion wrote:Chiming in on 'unlimited sick time'-

My company has the so-called 'unlimited sick time'. In reality, if you go over 5 days per year you get to have your boss talk to you about your sick leave. Over 10 days a year and HR talks to you (and maybe it goes on some formal record.

At the same time, there are signs in the kitchen telling you to stay home if you're sick so you don't put others at risk.

I'm guessing the company wants the best of both worlds - stay away from the office if you're sick, but make sure you work from home so you don't accrue any sick time. Or you'll get a lecture.
I cannot speak for where you work, but for where I work, not really. I have given that lecture, and gotten the training on when to give it. My guidance was that most illnesses are just a few days, and most people actually want to get back to work a day or so before they are fully recovered. WFH makes sense at the tail end of an illness, but not when someone would be better served by just staying in bed.

After a week, we want a Doctor's note so we know if we are heading towards short term disability, or whether this is just a nasty flu.

According to the CA state disability insurance site, to apply for short term disability:
- You must be unable to do your regular or customary work for at least eight consecutive days.
- You must be under the care and treatment of a licensed doctor or accredited religious practitioner during the first eight days of your disability.
- Your doctor must complete the medical certification of your disability.

Short term disability covers up to 52 weeks at ~50% of base pay rate.

So, at least in CA, your company has a good reason to care somewhere around eight days out, and is probably interested in deadline impact somewhat before then.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by jumpsalty »

Random Poster wrote:
jumpsalty wrote:
Random Poster wrote:
jumpsalty wrote:Most big companies have generous vacation policies anyway...usually 3 weeks + 2 weeks sick time for more "old school" companies and in my case we get unlimited PTO but I'm in silicon valley.
I find it rather depressing that 3 weeks of vacation is considered to be "generous."
Generous probably isn't the best word. I should have said average. Many smaller companies don't even offer 3 weeks. Besides, when you consider 3 weeks vacation plus sick time (cool managers will let you use some of this as extra vacation) and 11 paid holidays is over a month off each year.
Not to get off track or anything, but using sick time when you aren't sick is probably a good way to find yourself out of a job, regardless of how "cool" you may think that your manager is.

After all, when it has been discovered that you have been inappropriately taking sick time, it shouldn't come as too much of a surprise that your "cool" manager will suddenly express shock and dismay at your actions and allege having no knowledge of your misdeeds.

Also, counting holidays that everyone in the company is entitled (by law) to have off as part of one's vacation allotment strikes me as being somewhat shady with the truth. Vacation time, in theory, should be allowed to be used as the employee sees fit, whether that means taking off a few consecutive weeks in March, a day at a time throughout the Fall, or whatever. When holidays are pretty much scheduled to occur at the same time every year, that sorta takes away the flexibility-of-usage that vacation days are intended to provide.
Holiday is not required by law - maybe for federal employees or federal contractors but not private sector. My judgement might be different because I'm in the tech sector in silicon valley where lots of traditional rules are broken. Sounds like your company is stiff and uptight, but I see people from all levels of positions take sick time here and there for vacation. Not taking weeks or anything, but here and there sort of thing. I have unlimited vacation at my company and doubt I've taken 3 full weeks within the past year. Not because I can't but because I actually enjoy working and take the bulk of my time off at the end of the year.

Anyway going back to OP. How did the negotiation go?
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by guitarguy »

jumpsalty wrote:
Holiday is not required by law - maybe for federal employees or federal contractors but not private sector. My judgement might be different because I'm in the tech sector in silicon valley where lots of traditional rules are broken. Sounds like your company is stiff and uptight, but I see people from all levels of positions take sick time here and there for vacation. Not taking weeks or anything, but here and there sort of thing. I have unlimited vacation at my company and doubt I've taken 3 full weeks within the past year. Not because I can't but because I actually enjoy working and take the bulk of my time off at the end of the year.

Anyway going back to OP. How did the negotiation go?
I think most of the time using sick days as vacation (like to take a weekend trip and use a sick day on Friday to do it) is frowned upon. I know that's the way it is at every company I've been at. My current company though doesn't mind you using OA (occasional absence) time though for times when you need to miss work and are not sick. Technically we have unlimited sick/OA time, but supposedly you're not supposed to go over 5 per calendar year. I've gone over that already (way over in fact...I had surgery that required missing a week in addition to a few other sick/OA days throughout the year) but have never gotten a "talking to" about it.

As to the negotiation...still awaiting an offer!! I'm very optimistic still. The hiring manager said he should have an update within 2 weeks but hopefully sooner, so not hearing anything 2 days from the interview hopefully isn't cause for alarm...

I'm putting together a list of a few questions that would've not been appropriate for the interview (benefits, bonuses, expected salary increases, flex time, etc). I will update with details on how the negotiation went when (if, really) it happens!
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by Clever_Username »

nisiprius wrote:They are rarely going to say "We don't believe in work-life balance. We expect 100% commitment to the company 24x7. If we wanted you to have a spouse, we'd have issued you one." They are always going to say "We strongly encourage our employees to keep a good work-life balance, because that makes them better employees. In fact, look, we even have little brochures, here, why don't you take one now, 'Keeping Your Balance,' and another one, 'Manage Your Stress,' and, oh, this is a good one, 'Eat Better, Work Better.' But of course we hope you will pitch in with a little extra to help the company from time to time when we need it."
This really hit home for me. I remember when I discovered that what a company advertised as its "work-life balance" to prospective employees wasn't what it was really like. I felt rather betrayed when, after working 50-60 hours per week, I was told at my first performance review that I don't check in enough on weekends. The review ended with my boss telling me that "it's all about the work-life balance." I wondered how he could say those two things in such quick succession without his head exploding.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by harrychan »

Go to indeed.com or glassdoor.com and check out reviews from current and past employees. If it is indeed (pun intended) a megacorp, you should be able to get a good glimpse of what people think of the company.
This is not legal or certified financial advice but you know that already.
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guitarguy
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by guitarguy »

harrychan wrote:Go to indeed.com or glassdoor.com and check out reviews from current and past employees. If it is indeed (pun intended) a megacorp, you should be able to get a good glimpse of what people think of the company.
I have already done that actually. I did find lots of reviews...unfortunately none from the group I would be joining...but lots from the building and other groups. Of course there were the reviews where "everything was horrible" and I take those with a grain of salt of course. Some were also quite outdated and I didn't put as much weight into those either. But overall there weren't any real issues that came up many times over. Most people rated the "work/life balance" at around 4 stars out of 5.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by autonomy »

tyrion wrote:Chiming in on 'unlimited sick time'-

My company has the so-called 'unlimited sick time'. In reality, if you go over 5 days per year you get to have your boss talk to you about your sick leave. Over 10 days a year and HR talks to you (and maybe it goes on some formal record.

At the same time, there are signs in the kitchen telling you to stay home if you're sick so you don't put others at risk.

I'm guessing the company wants the best of both worlds - stay away from the office if you're sick, but make sure you work from home so you don't accrue any sick time. Or you'll get a lecture.
I think this illustrates the concept of unlimited sick time fairly well:

Image

Stan: We need to talk about your flair.
Joanna: Really? I... I have fifteen pieces on. I, also...
Stan: Well, okay. Fifteen is the minimum, okay?
Joanna: Okay.
Stan: Now, you know it's up to you whether or not you want to just do the bare minimum. Or... well, like Brian, for example, has thirty seven pieces of flair, okay. And a terrific smile.

Yes, we have unlimited off time, but you better not be taking any of it.
guitarguy wrote:Of course there were the reviews where "everything was horrible" and I take those with a grain of salt of course. Some were also quite outdated and I didn't put as much weight into those either.
Keep in mind that those will be biased, as disgruntled employees are more likely to write poor reviews.

At the company I work for, we get sick/personal time off on top of vacation/holiday days to use for illnesses and running errands. There was no way of knowing this before I joined, but it turns out no one really cares what we use that sick/personal time for, so the way I see it, it's part of my benefit package and I am going to use it and not feel guilty about it. We have plenty of crunchtime throughout the year when I get to work for free, plus it helps to have upper management whose heads are not stuck up their behinds. I would say, maybe try asking what holidays you will get off. For example, we get the day after Thanksgiving off, because the CEO realizes that many people prefer to take the extended week and not come in on a Friday.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by harrychan »

I think you are good. I also can't help but over think when I have an interview. I had a phone interview with the "social networking site company" and was so excited I seemingly read every glassdoor interview review they had lol. Good luck! Let us know how it goes!
This is not legal or certified financial advice but you know that already.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by guitarguy »

Just wanted to update you all on this...

I was extended a verbal job offer this morning! :mrgreen: The initial base salary is a little below what I was hoping for, and I told the recruiter that when he asked what my initial thoughts were (after saying how excited and happy I was to receive the offer). I asked for a day to go over the benefits package and everything, at which point I'm planning on following up to negotiate salary, vacation, and possible signing bonus. I'm awaiting getting everything by email so I can go through it all.

I also got the contact info for the group manager and also a close colleague. I figure I will pick both of their brains for the few questions I have. The questions I want to ask going forward are:

1. What is the turnover rate in the group?
2. What are the core hours? Is there flex starting/ending times on a daily basis? And will we be issued a company cell phone and when will we be expected to be available? (I'm hoping these questions will give me a good idea of how many hours a normal week will entail.)
3. How often will performance reviews be conducted and do they generally include salary increases? Are salary increases performance based? (I just want to know what to expect in this area going forward.)
4. ??? (I have looked at a lot of "questions to ask" lists...but if there are any specific ones that you asked or wished you'd asked...I'd really love the input here!!)

I'm thinking of directing the first 2 questions toward my colleague I'd be working closely with, and #3 toward the hiring manager. Although I'm hoping to come up with at least one more good question to ask the hiring manager so I don't bother him for just the one.

The salary negotiation part...I've said from day 1 I was looking for "mid 80s"...they offered $78k. I'm planning to ask if there's any "flexibility there" and then hopefully get an offer between $80-85k. If it's on the lower end of the range, I plan on one follow up request saying that "I'd be happy to compromise on the salary if the overall compensation package is right" and asking for either more vacation (to offset the days that have designated use for a certain week of the year for their shutdown) or a signing bonus in lieu of the extra salary. I hope going back and forth one more time to discuss the alternative benefits will not seem like I'm "asking for too much" or come off as greedy.

My rock bottom "doesn't make sense to take the job for less" number is $75k so they're above that. If there really is zero room for flexibility in the salary, I probably would accept if they offered the extra vacation and a signing bonus to compensate. I just hope they don't say no to a higher salary, no to the extra vacation, and no to the signing bonus. Lack of being able to give me anything more seems like a cue that the company might not be very good to work for. Hopefully that doesn't happen. I have to think most good job candidates negotiate at least a little...and I'm in a position to do so!
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by tibbitts »

I'll mention this because it contradicts most experiences here. I've countered at as little as 4% more, and there was zero movement. I know for sure because I walked away. That's the only way you'll know for sure that you got the most possible in a negotiation: walk away.

It would be extraordinary, for any reasonable-sized firm, if you get even one more day vacation. I'd bet that for every one extra day of vacation yet get, you could have gotten $10k more in salary, because they need to rewrite a policy to give you that one more day. It's possible they'd have to add that vacation time for everyone. So, I don't think it's accurate to say that the company isn't being reasonable to not move on an issue like that. But please follow-up and let us know if you do win on that point, because that might change future employment negotiating strategies for a lot of people.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by BigOil »

At my Megacorp we COULD NOT change vacation rules, but could "credit" years of service in prior companies in same/relevant field. So if you had 5-9 years as an engineer you got 3 weeks period on hire. This was unchangeable policy. "Relevance field" service was determined at lower levels and not questioned much. I think this type of thing is typical. As we competed with Tech/Valley for some hires, that's how we got that policy. Had up to 6 weeks (@30 years!) and 10 holidays (one was flex day) on a 5/40 base schedule. We had a lot of time off for long tenure folks. Not many Exempts made it that long. Union guys often did and they started younger sometimes and were more local.

Small signing bonuses were political only to the point if the hiring Supervisor had the stroke and logic to answer "why", based on who had to approve (Sr. Mgr, GM, VP, Pres, Exec Corp VP, etc...). So for us smaller $5-10K ish, one time bonuses were easier to do.

Point 1 ask about "experienced hire" Vacay policy if it's big company. Point 2, "help" the hiring HR/Manager with the "case" for a bonus, you loose 401k match for 6 months,other "costs", salary is slightly below market, etc. Yes it's baloney but it might help.

Note salary is ALWAYS in bands and tied to budget in any decent size company. To get a raise other than structure (or via promotion) at some point you have to be better than others (perceived or actual) continually, or low in range and a good performer (newbie or just promoted). Know what the range is, ask?. Some jobs have multiple bands. If you are high in range, then you will not get more without a promotion.

The bands and stuff were confidential to pass out or distribute, but we were fully allowed to discuss them. I think this was becasue we had international pay grades and "Engineers" in the developing world made MUCH less than those in the USA. HR did not lie about this, but they did not want to have other stew in it...reality is right to work and pay is LOCAL even it the company is multinational and works as a "team"...that's the politics of Work Visas, trade, etc.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by swaption »

guitarguy wrote:1. What is the turnover rate in the group?
2. What are the core hours? Is there flex starting/ending times on a daily basis? And will we be issued a company cell phone and when will we be expected to be available? (I'm hoping these questions will give me a good idea of how many hours a normal week will entail.)
3. How often will performance reviews be conducted and do they generally include salary increases? Are salary increases performance based? (I just want to know what to expect in this area going forward.)
4. ??? (I have looked at a lot of "questions to ask" lists...but if there are any specific ones that you asked or wished you'd asked...I'd really love the input here!!)

I'm thinking of directing the first 2 questions toward my colleague I'd be working closely with, and #3 toward the hiring manager. Although I'm hoping to come up with at least one more good question to ask the hiring manager so I don't bother him for just the one.

The salary negotiation part...I've said from day 1 I was looking for "mid 80s"...they offered $78k. I'm planning to ask if there's any "flexibility there" and then hopefully get an offer between $80-85k. If it's on the lower end of the range, I plan on one follow up request saying that "I'd be happy to compromise on the salary if the overall compensation package is right" and asking for either more vacation (to offset the days that have designated use for a certain week of the year for their shutdown) or a signing bonus in lieu of the extra salary. I hope going back and forth one more time to discuss the alternative benefits will not seem like I'm "asking for too much" or come off as greedy.

My rock bottom "doesn't make sense to take the job for less" number is $75k so they're above that. If there really is zero room for flexibility in the salary, I probably would accept if they offered the extra vacation and a signing bonus to compensate. I just hope they don't say no to a higher salary, no to the extra vacation, and no to the signing bonus. Lack of being able to give me anything more seems like a cue that the company might not be very good to work for. Hopefully that doesn't happen. I have to think most good job candidates negotiate at least a little...and I'm in a position to do so!
Alright, take this for what it's worth. I would not ask for additional vacation. First of all your chance of success is highly remote, and it's not exactly the kind of topic you necessarily want to go off the menu for. Combined with the work/life balance stuff, there is a risk they are going to think you are a guy that's going to stare at the clock until it is time to go and simply be in it to support you free time. They want you there for your work. This is just me, but asking if there is any flexibility on salary comes across as very weak. Much better off stating facts, like your view that the salary is below the market level for the position. You can even follow to inquire if there other factors to consider that might compensate for the disparity. I also don't like the question about the cell phone. It just seems off and runs the risk of confusing them as to what your concern might be. If you want to know about work life/balance, go ahenad and ask direclty. It's a perfectly acceptable topic. You can discuss, but whatever it is, be appreciative and enthusiastic about the answer. What you want is information, and then you can go off on your own and decide whether you you like the information or not, taken within the context of all the other information.
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by jackholloway »

I would ask about vacation, but not as "can I have more vacation." Instead, frame it as "I am giving up XX days of vacation from my present employer. Can we find a way to make that good?" Expect their answer to be in money terms, but they may go for equivalent seniority.

Asking about pager duties is perfectly reasonable. If they are involved, ask about response time required and how often you are on call. Also, it is worth asking whether there is time in lieu or pager bonuses - some do, and some do not. In general, if everyone is on duty, do not bother asking about time in lieu, as they consider it part of the job, but if only a fraction of the team is, it is worth finding out whether there are any cookies associated.

I would also ask directly about work-life balance if it concerns you. Again, phrase it not as "I am watching the clock", but as "I live XX miles away and want to know about occasional telecommuting" or "I occasionally have a tuesday morning drop-off or afternoon pickup. Will this work with our schedule?" Real numbers help - if they want you there where the stock exchange opens, then they will give a different answer than if they have a rotating support queue where they do not care which day you are in at 7, as long as there is at least three.

As far a salary, I expect they will not move much if any, but they may move on a signing bonus. Depends on the case you make. Look at retirement plans, for example, and compare to what you have now. If it is much better, acknowledge that, and if worse, see what they can do, but be prepared to back it up with hard numbers, and recognize that they will probably only move on the aggregate answer.

I do suggest reading the questions in front of a mirror and putting your boss hat on. If they sound like "wow, every question is about not coming to work", then either drop a question or reframe. If, on the other hand, you sound like someone enthusiastic who is trying to figure out how his life will change, then ask away.
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kenyan
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by kenyan »

jackholloway wrote:
tyrion wrote:Chiming in on 'unlimited sick time'-

My company has the so-called 'unlimited sick time'. In reality, if you go over 5 days per year you get to have your boss talk to you about your sick leave. Over 10 days a year and HR talks to you (and maybe it goes on some formal record.

At the same time, there are signs in the kitchen telling you to stay home if you're sick so you don't put others at risk.

I'm guessing the company wants the best of both worlds - stay away from the office if you're sick, but make sure you work from home so you don't accrue any sick time. Or you'll get a lecture.
I cannot speak for where you work, but for where I work, not really. I have given that lecture, and gotten the training on when to give it. My guidance was that most illnesses are just a few days, and most people actually want to get back to work a day or so before they are fully recovered. WFH makes sense at the tail end of an illness, but not when someone would be better served by just staying in bed.

After a week, we want a Doctor's note so we know if we are heading towards short term disability, or whether this is just a nasty flu.

According to the CA state disability insurance site, to apply for short term disability:
- You must be unable to do your regular or customary work for at least eight consecutive days.
- You must be under the care and treatment of a licensed doctor or accredited religious practitioner during the first eight days of your disability.
- Your doctor must complete the medical certification of your disability.

Short term disability covers up to 52 weeks at ~50% of base pay rate.

So, at least in CA, your company has a good reason to care somewhere around eight days out, and is probably interested in deadline impact somewhat before then.
Another CA-specific issue buried in the unlimited-sick-time fine print: it is California state law that you must be able to take up to 50% of your paid sick time in order to care for sick family members (most often children). However, this law only applies if the amount of paid sick time is specified with an actual number. If you have unlimited sick time, your employer is under no obligation to pay for your sick time spent caring for your family. My company happily exercises this loophole, while requiring upper management to approve any sick time taken over 10 days in a calendar year.
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Random Musings
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by Random Musings »

Yeah, we get unlimited sick time too.

Having that benefit, most people who are sick still come in. Sick days are reviewed in the organization, plus, it's just catch up anyway. The last one I "took" was during the middle of the day when our CFO told me to leave due to sudden migraine sickness (I get one about every 2-3 years and it lasts for about 1/2 a day). I must have looked pretty bad.

With respect to vacation, I've had four weeks for a while, which with the 10 holidays is bearable. Starting out in engineering/science, I always had three weeks minimum.

RM
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by gunn_show »

jackholloway wrote:If you want a number that is not seemingly on the table, say so. You do not want them to lowball you without realizing that they are.

For work-life balance, wait for the offer to be on the table. I would ask the hiring manager post offer. I spoke with every one of my team members about on call/pager, extended hours, when I do and do not expect to reach you after hours, etc. I am a bit unusual for a manager at MegaCorp in that I do not expect you to see weekend email, and I encourage you to disable work accounts on your cell while on vacation. I am sad that this is unusual, but people need break time.
+1 on both accords. You are in a power position - you have a job, have a likely promotion coming - you don't HAVE to go anywhere and won't be in dire straits if you don't take this offer. I am doing something similar with a few job opportunities. Basically if I don't get get what I want, I stay where I am. You only have this position a few times, if lucky, in your career/life. Take advantage. And depending on your title and industry, signing bonuses are somewhat common. Especially in finance, consulting, and some engineering. If you don't get the salary, definitely get the bonus. One or the other, or both. Neither, and you walk away. Sometimes bluffing to walk away wakes them up. Sometimes megacorp just moves on to next candidate.

work/life - very hard to figure out, and as you said, hard to ask without sounding like you want to be a 40-hour week lacky and nothing more. Press too hard and it is a huge turn off. Be wary how you ask, and to whom you ask.

Extra vacation time - never heard of this in any job or career, so good luck. Me thinks this is a fruitless request. Ask for more money first, signing bonus second, if they budge on neither, walk away. Or take it, if at the current offer, you are still in a better $$ situation and current/future career path and growth trajectory.

(I started typing this before I got to the bottom, and my replies are still relevant to your update today)

good luck
"The best life hack of all is to just put the work in and never give up." Bas Rutten
dotnet
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by dotnet »

Based on my experience...

1. Asking for more vacation will get you exactly no where no matter what. The others are right, service time carried over is probably your only chance.

2. Also - the "bands". From what I've seen, the bands can have a huge range (100kish) to give the different groups flexibility. But this may not be at all companies. I think an extra $5k is far more likely than an extra day of vacation.

3. The biggest - you're planning on working here for the next x number of years. If you start off by asking weird questions and not being direct - its going to send a weird signal. I agree with the previous poster that being blunt (but not socially awkward) is the best strategy.

4. From a pure political view point (and more personal preference) - I never like negotiating and getting nothing. I've never asked for more money with a new job - but asking for something more and getting nothing would be a weird way to start.
leonard
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by leonard »

Clearly_Irrational wrote:
leonard wrote:There has always been a more annoying trend of people taking sly vacation around the holidays - blocking out their schedules with so many "meetings", shopping online, cutting out early, etc. - without actually scheduling the vacation and blocking their schedule as out of office. Makes it impossible for the folks left to get their input to make progress on projects - killing productivity for the folks still in the office. May as well send everyone on vacation around the holiday's anyway.
Oh, I get why it's good for employers, but it means I can't take vacation in the summer, when, you know, I might actually want to go on vacation?
how exactly are they making you take your own vacation time - when it's company mandated time off. I doubt they are forcing you to go in to the reporting tool and clock those hours as personal vacation.
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Clearly_Irrational
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by Clearly_Irrational »

leonard wrote:how exactly are they making you take your own vacation time - when it's company mandated time off. I doubt they are forcing you to go in to the reporting tool and clock those hours as personal vacation.
Well, I could choose to be unpaid for that period instead. I suppose you could consider that freedom but I don't. Vacation days are part of my benefits package, telling me when to take them reduces their value.
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gunn_show
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Re: Job Offer Negotiation / Interview Snafu

Post by gunn_show »

leonard wrote:
Clearly_Irrational wrote:
leonard wrote:There has always been a more annoying trend of people taking sly vacation around the holidays - blocking out their schedules with so many "meetings", shopping online, cutting out early, etc. - without actually scheduling the vacation and blocking their schedule as out of office. Makes it impossible for the folks left to get their input to make progress on projects - killing productivity for the folks still in the office. May as well send everyone on vacation around the holiday's anyway.
Oh, I get why it's good for employers, but it means I can't take vacation in the summer, when, you know, I might actually want to go on vacation?
how exactly are they making you take your own vacation time - when it's company mandated time off. I doubt they are forcing you to go in to the reporting tool and clock those hours as personal vacation.
actually a lot of big, namely tech companies, do this.. HP has mandatory 1-2 weeks off at Christmas, Dell has Thanksgiving week off... and that comes out of your vacation bucket, like it or not...
"The best life hack of all is to just put the work in and never give up." Bas Rutten
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