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  1. #1
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    I've Been Offered a Job, but the Salary is a Disappointment. What would you do?

    Here's some background information on my situation:

    I've been working for four years for a very large fashion-oriented company. My background is in convergent journalism, and I'm a self-taught HTML, CSS, Javascript, PHP and MySQL programmer. My original gig for the company was working the phones at one of their call centers (during a bad economy, we all took sub-optimal jobs to make ends meet).

    When I started for the company, I realized how woefully behind the company was in the area of internal communications. The company's procedural manual was designed and maintained using FrontPage 2003, and there was all sorts of room to modernize using modern coding techniques and practices. I essentially rode the idea of modernizing our internal communications systems into a prestigious spot in our company's career development program, where we rotate through four different departments in the company in three-month rotations. I started off in our technology department, and from day 1 the expectation was that if I did well and proved myself, I'd get a job offer at the end of the rotation.

    Today was the end of the rotation, and I did get a job offer. The company offered me a position as a Web Developer, but working on different systems and in different languages. I'd have to learn how to code in Java and C#, both of which I have next-to-no experience in. In addition to working on some of our proprietary internal systems, I'd also be in-charge of revamping our aforementioned internal communications systems.

    What's more, while I currently make about $43k (hourly) in the career development program, my pay for the Web Developer position would only be making $47k (salaried), with the same benefits and one additional week of vacation a year. I thanked them very kindly for the offer, and asked for the night to think it over (which they gave me). In all honesty, I'm cool with everything but the salary, which is a good $23k below average for a Web Developer in the Denver area according to all resources I've checked. I know I'd have a lot to learn, but I have a lot to contribute as well, and I was hoping for more in the range of about $60k/year.

    So, I have until tomorrow morning to decide. What would you do? Are my concerns with the salary unreasonable? How hard would it be with a programmer with my skills to pickup C# and Java? Any feedback is greatly, greatly appreciated.
    Last edited by superwookie; 05-01-2013 at 09:55 PM. Reason: Just wanted to say, if there's a better section to post this in, MODS, let me know and I'll glad move my post.

  • #2
    Rockstar Coder
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    Well if you don't get this job what are your other options? If you ask for more money the worst that can happen is they retract the offer and you have to find a different job. You won't get what you don't ask for though. If you ask for 60k they might give it to you or counter your offer with a lower number.
    OracleGuy

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    superwookie (05-01-2013)

  • #3
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    Honestly, $60k is really what I was expecting. I probably would have even taken $55k without hesitation.

    So here's the kicker with the job. If I turn down the offer, I go to the legal department for three months. At the end of that time, I could be offered a job in the legal department (or not). From there, I'll move on to our internal audit team, and then either support or marketing (most likely marketing). I could pick up a job in any of these departments, but in all honesty technology is where I want to be. If I turn down the offer it doesn't mean that I can't be offered a Web Dev position in the future, but I'm afraid that turning down the offer would be a bit like spitting in their face.

  • #4
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    Then ask for 60k and see what happens, if they retract the offer and you'll still have work in other departments for a while perhaps you should be looking for jobs outside of this company during that time.

    You don't want to take something and be unhappy because your compensation is substantially less than your skills and your contributions.

    Also keep in mind that I'm just some person on the Internet and it is easy for me to say all this because it isn't my life so take what I or anyone else says with a grain of salt.
    OracleGuy

  • #5
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    You can always counter-offer, but the reality is they are hiring you into a position you do not yet have the skill set for. That says mountains about how much you've impressed them (that rarely happens!), but you still have to prove your abilities as a coder in C##/Java.

    If it were me I'd probably ask if they'd round it up to $50k (I mean why not ask, the worst they could do is say no) and then work your butt off getting really good at Java and C##-- On the company's dime! That's sweet. You will be gaining valuable real-world coding experience, so if it doesn't work out with this company, you can jump to a better offer.

    Either way, it sounds like you have the chops to really go far. Good luck!


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