The Raise

Yesterday I literally got the easiest raise that has ever occurred to me.  I merely applied for a few other positions in the company and I got an offer to stay put, but be reclassified to an engineer position with a 9% raise starting July 1.  That’s the simple version of what occurred.

The long version of the story was I was getting unhappy at my job almost a year ago.  It was becoming a bit too repetitive for me and I was starting to feel under valued.  Yet at the start of the year we had a department reorganization and I got a new position, so I was sort of hoping things would get better.  Nope, that didn’t happen, in fact things got worse for a while.  If you have ever been reorganized you will likely understand the reason: confusion, uncertainty and more demands on you than time to do them.

Rather than bitch about it, I decided to do something.  I dusted off my resume, cleaned it up and started shopping for other jobs within my current company (it has an excellent benefit package so I wanted to stay with it).  Apparently I hit a few sore spots when I applied for a position that I was almost guaranteed to get an interview.  So then there was some honest talks with my supervisor on what was looking for and what could potentially be done to keep me.

So a plan was put forward about potentially reclassifying my existing job to an engineering position.  Frankly given the typically slowness in our company on issues like this, I didn’t put much faith in it occurring. Yet the bureaucracy can occasionally shock even me and the paperwork was done so fast I expected it to be almost smoking when the new job offer came off the printer.

Now I had an interesting problem if you took the the money issue off the table and adding a promise to modify my workload, could I be interested enough to stay put?  I was giving the idea serious thought because you see my current position has two aces in the hole: 1) I have utterly great co-workers (intelligent, friendly and funny) and 2) the future workload is going to be very interesting.  The currently workload sucks a bit, but the future projects in the next year or two is going to be perfect for me (really complex problems with multiple broad systematic issues and a mandate to overall them).  Yes, I know that a lot of people would hate that kind of work, but system analysis and modification with the equivalent of a 15 dimensional problems is fun for me.

So I decided to accept the offer and stay put and to start my ‘new’ job…I’ve going on vacation for a month. 😉  So were you ever in a situation where you were ready to move on, but changed your mind?  What helped you stay put or leave your job?

10 thoughts on “The Raise”

  1. When companies fight to keep you, as they did with you.. it’s a good reason to stay on.

    I left because all the companies I’ve ever worked for, and the ones I hear about from my friends, are not worth working for compared to being a freelancer.

  2. I had a similar situation three years ago. I was very good at my job but was bored and thought my life should be about more. I decided to go back to school for something totally unrelated. I approached my employer about continuing to work part time while I was in school. They responded with an offer that would take away some of my benefits (RSP, health insurance, life insurance – it’s Canada – I don’t need any of these) and in return pay me 25% more per hour. My new part time/casual status also did not include any minimum or maximum amount of hours. I was overjoyed.
    Well, I did the first 8 months of college, and even with stellar marks and 4 interviews I wasn’t able to land a co-op job, which was mandatory to continue with the course. With my current employer paying me so much and giving me great flexibility I dropped out of the college course and returned to my employer, working generally full time hours, but still on a casual basis. They asked if I wanted to go back to full time, to get benefits, but I refused as it would drop my salary significantly and I would lose all that flexibility. They still give me a lot of benefits such as paying for continuing ed and professional membership fees. A little while after I returned, they even let me switch to working at home, except for 2 days a week.
    It’s great to have an employer that understands that if they treat me well, I’ll continue to do really good work for them, and not quick. I know won’t leave this job until I retire or am a professional writer. I couldn’t have a better job.

  3. Wow that is great! I have a feeling that this will 100% happen when I tell my employer than I am leaving to freelance full-time.

  4. About six months ago my overlords came to me with a 10% raise out of the blue. I think word of my ER plans made its way to the upper offices… really, by paying me more they are simply helping my departure from the working world happen even quicker – not thier intention I am sure. 🙂

  5. I’m distrustful of future promises, and won’t wait longer than half a year. The last time I got such promises, I simply quit and went elsewhere.

  6. A few years back I applied for another position within the same company (and same office) which was actually a promotion with a 16% increase to base salary (plus quarterly bonuses and the possibility of overtime). It was offered to me and I accepted. Meanwhile my old department didn’t want to let me go so they tried to entice me to stay (knowing that money was a primary motivating factor) but they could barely make half of that raise … and even that would have required corporate approval (good luck with that). I personally get rather bitter when stuff like that happens though. I could have been making that higher salary the whole time … and yet it takes me threatening to leave for someone to want to pay me more in line with what I’m worth. It reminds me of those long distance wars where I would switch from AT&T to MCI but then AT&T would call me two days later to tell me that they could beat/match the deal that I got with MCI. Too little, too late. Be proactive, not reactive.

  7. Back in the late 1980s, about 2 years after I finished college and began working full-time, I was on the verge of leaving my company. My boss somehow found out I was leaving (I did not tell anyone at the company) and immediately offered me a 10% raise to stay, a raise about equal to the raise I would have gotten to leave the company. I took the raise and stayed with the company. This was on top of a 16% raise I had received 9 months earlier and a 6% raise I would receive 3 months later. My boss also promised to make some changes to ease my unhappiness (and he made good on them). Ahhhh, the 1980s……

  8. I have heard that the people who make it to the top and have the most success are usually those who stick it out with a company as long as they can.

    I work in an industry (engineering) where people move from company to company frequently so they can work on the top projects or so they can get a few bucks more an hour, but come downturn they are also usually the first to get the ax.

    I personally love where I work – good earnings, trust and respect from management, opportunity to lead & mentor others, lots of interesting projects; so I won’t even consider going anywhere else – at least until my investment earnings from dividends grow to the point where I don’t need that paycheck anymore…

  9. >>>>I have heard that the people who make it to the top and have the most success are usually those who stick it out with a company as long as they can.

    Actually, I’ve heard that moving every 2 years is supposed to be optimal.

    Being self-employed, I haven’t thought about raises in a long time. Bleh, I’m not a fan of the idea. I was promised raises for years at one employer. Didn’t get them due to external influences on the company. I left there and went to another company and after I start, I find out they have a complete pay freeze. Nice little bit of oversight there.

    Now I don’t think in terms of raises, I think in terms of business expansion, lowering costs and risk, higher conversion ratios.

  10. @ everyone,

    Yes it is nice to have a company that wants you to stay. Here is hoping it all works out.

    @Dividend Tactics,

    I don’t want to make it to the top. I literally have no interest in those jobs…no matter what they pay. I will assume you work in consulting as generally that field does tend to axe during downturns. I’m with a utility which is much more stable for long term employment, so your point about sticking around doesn’t really apply here. I tend to rotate jobs every 2.5 years as I’m done learning as much as I can and I’m ready to try something new. If anything it makes me more valuable since I’m crossed trained on several areas (regulation, environment, chemical process design, sales…I have a long resume). I’m happy you love where you work, but not everyone can find that. Do what works for you…in my case I don’t think it fully applies.


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