Martin Tithonium (tithonium) wrote,
Martin Tithonium

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On changing jobs

So, by now you know that I'm planning to start a job search on my 5th Amazoniversary. That's 2.5 weeks away. I was talking to L.B. the other day, and she mentioned that I do this a lot. "I'm leaving, looking for a job elsewhere!", that is. Even with the "And this time I mean it!". Tho, in my defense, I /have/ looked elsewhere in the past. You may remember that the only thing that kept me from taking the Crown College job was the lack of health insurance. Mind you, in retrospect I'm damned glad I didn't.

So, by now you know how little I think Amazon, as a company, gives a damn about its employees. The pay rate is generally agreed to be substandard compared to the industry... Tho, I admit, I hear less about that these days than I once did, perhaps the industry has sunk to our levels? No, more likely we've merely out-lived most comparables in our industry. I've gone through my rants about the annual review system, pay raises, and the insult that is the Total Compensation Statement. I don't care to repeat them right now. I'm pretty sure I've bitched at at least SOME of you about the expense reporting system and how it could ONLY have been chosen to discourage its use - paranoia, perhaps, but when they're really out to piss you off... Suffice to say, Amazon does its level best to do the absolute minimum to keep employees around.

So, by now you're wondering why the hell I'm still there after five years. Well, that's really complicated.

I'm rather addicted to my medical coverage, if you must know. With all that's wrong with me, I can't afford to be without it.

The golden handcuffs are, let's be honest, well-named. Though they do chafe from time to time.

I remember what things were like at Microsoft. I remember what things were like at Loudeye, in the last months. At least at Amazon I have a boss who's competent and even if I'm frequently unsure of the higher-ups. I've got coworkers I enjoy working with - I had that at Loudeye too, mind. But I haven't had any really bad managers at Amazon, which I can't say for my previous jobs.

I get to work on projects that affect millions of people. Literally, my code is used by /millions of people/. grymor, is that a fair assessment? How much of wishlist is still my original code? I'm willing to bet PI::Registry is still 80% mine. PI::CFSAB is mostly one big martian fingerprint. Good catch on the config stuff tho. And now I'm up to my elbows (neck, in some cases) in Your Account. Order History? I've touched most of it in the past year, and have a semi-significant refactoring ready to commit. Order Summary? Ditto. Gotta finish that refactor tomorrow; I've got a meeting scheduled with my boss to show it to him. The new Order Editor app? I pushed for that structure, I masterminded it. Had help defining the final data structures, mind you. The new combine orders? Hasn't launched yet, don't go looking for it. My content pulls together OH, OS, /and/ OE.

I've been doing web development pretty much exclusively for 6 years. I've got a BSCS, I've written C, C++, and Java in my time, but /never/ professionally. I've READ quite a bit of C++ and Java, digging through our codebase, debugging systems, suggesting fixes to SDEs; I'm doing a LITTLE Java work - and realizing how rusty I am - with this new test framework I'm playing with; but I've not done any professional software development, /ever/.

So, why am I still here? Fear and Ego, I think it boils down to. What if I leave and find out it sucks even more out there in the real world? irgth knows what I mean. Tho, you at least have the camera to fall back to. Outside of web development and whining about things, I don't have that many marketable skills. And I'm not really willing to go into journalism. ;;)

On the other pseudopod: B.M. wants me badly. He hasn't resorted to begging me to come work for him yet, but I occasionally get the impression it's a fine line away. Gifting seems to be interested, tho I haven't spoken to W.K. directly about it. If I left, I could almost certainly get ONE of them to hire me back... right? E.K. was joking(?) about getting B.M. to hire me as a contractor.

One of the options that occurred to me is a Leave of Absence. With appropriate approvals, I could take up to 3 months off unpaid without losing anything (except /possibly/ my position in the group, but that's dealable, since I know there are groups that would have me). I tried to figure out whether it's kosher to work for someone else during that time, but the HR site wasn't explicit. I'll probably have to talk to an hr rep, meh. Medical coverage would discontinue after the 15th of the .. month.. after I leave? something like that. after a month, but on the 15th. Stock would all suspend vesting, which is better than going away completely.

Can I really find out if there's something better out there in 3 months? It took half a year for Loudeye to start really sucking.

Fret. Fret fret.
Tags: angst, work
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