Hey, I got a new job (again)

As readers may have noticed, Brian and I announced this past weekend that I got a new job.  Many of you are probably thinking, Wait… this sounds familiar.  And you would be right – just 6 months ago, I announced that I had found a job after finishing my degree.  I’ve moved on – again!

About two weeks ago, a large software company was recruiting near my office.  Being the intrepid, A-type personality that I am (okay, mostly I was gunning for the free donuts…) I went to talk with them.  Not only did I talk to them, I ensured that I was the only person talking them at the time.  They were doing a large meet-and-greet scheduled, but I didn’t want to fight through a dozen other people!  They would never remember me.  So instead, I emailed ahead and arranged to speak with a recruiter BEFORE the session. Job tip #1 – Get them alone… (muahaha…)

large lecture hall

I didn’t want to fight a big crowd!
Photo Credit: Roanoakecollege via Flickr

 

We had a good chat about my experience and interests, I ate a donut or two, and they invited me to submit a resume, and so I did.  Job tip #2 – Always talk to the recruiters.  It’s their job to fill jobs.  They want to like you and they want to help you find a job.  I did my best to smile and be personable and friendly.  Afterwards, I sent them an email and thanked them for taking the time to chat with me.

About a week later, I got an email from a different recruiter from the company.  She had received my resume from the first recruiter and she wanted to arrange an interview for me.  Sweet!

Then she called back a few hours later – they had to arrange the interview for the next day. Gulp.  Technical interviews are challenging because you are usually asked to solve problems on a white board while the interview team watches.  Job tip #3 – Prepare, prepare, prepare!  Having only one day to prepare wasn’t very much at all.  But, I had the advantage of being employed – I didn’t need this job, so I felt okay about taking the interview on short notice.  I  did brush up on some of the common coding questions that are asked during technical interviews and I read up on some of the recent news about the company.

The next day, I bused down to the office for my interview.  It went great!  I really connected with the team and I was able to solve both technical problems that were presented to me.  Both questions were problems that I had reviewed the night before.  Woohoo!  At the end of the interview, I managed to ask a few questions, one of which made the interviewer remark, “Huh, that’s a great question actually… ” and we followed it up with a good discussion.  Job tip #4 – Prepare good post-interview questions to ask.  It’s your chance to talk, so don’t waste it!

My interview was followed by two phone calls during the next week and then a job offer!  All in all, the process took about two weeks.  It was a whirlwind romance.  😉

On the personal finance side, it’s a good step up for me:

  • larger company with more opportunities for training and advancement
  • 25% increase in salary + eligibility for overtime pay
  • signing bonus
  • discounts on products
  • free gym, fitness classes and coffee/snacks

Of course, there are some downsides to leaving a university setting:

  • only three weeks vacation instead of four
  • longer hours
  • no defined benefit pension plan
  • sparser extended health plan

The benefits don’t bother me too much because between Brian and I, we are well covered.  I’m a little sad about having less vacation, but I’m hoping to convert some of my overtime pay into time off.  But overall, I think I come out ahead in this position.  I’m especially looking forward to working with people who are more software engineering oriented.  I feel like I have a lot to learn, and I’m going to have a better chance of learning it at the new company.  As well, the bigger paycheque will help me out A LOT when it comes to knocking off my student loans and paying down our mortgages.

Would you have left a cushy job with benefits and 4 weeks of vacation?

Posted in: Career and Work

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