Win a copy of Testing JavaScript Applications this week in the HTML Pages with CSS and JavaScript forum!
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
programming forums Java Mobile Certification Databases Caching Books Engineering Micro Controllers OS Languages Paradigms IDEs Build Tools Frameworks Application Servers Open Source This Site Careers Other all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
Marshals:
  • Campbell Ritchie
  • Bear Bibeault
  • Ron McLeod
  • Jeanne Boyarsky
  • Paul Clapham
Sheriffs:
  • Tim Cooke
  • Liutauras Vilda
  • Junilu Lacar
Saloon Keepers:
  • Tim Moores
  • Stephan van Hulst
  • Tim Holloway
  • fred rosenberger
  • salvin francis
Bartenders:
  • Piet Souris
  • Frits Walraven
  • Carey Brown

I don't want to relocate !

 
Ranch Hand
Posts: 34
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hi all !

I've been working remotely for a software company for almost 1.5 years. This is my first job after completing Masters. The company is based in US. Sometime back they set up an office in my country. The office is not located in my city, it was set up in some other city. So, I continued to work remotely.

When I had joined the company, relocation or travelling was never discussed or even mentioned. Now, my employer wants me to relocate for around 6 months. If I don't agree to this, he might ask me to spend atleast one week every month in the company office.

Now, the thing is that I don't want to relocate. I am not comfortable with the idea in the first place. In my own city I live with my family. So most expenses like house rent, car, fooding, utility bills etc are automatically covered. Apart from this there is less responsibility when living with family. I am already being underpaid and I can't even meet my basic needs (pretty ashamed of this...). Apart from this he is offering a package in which only a slum dweller can pull on. But since I don't want to relocate at all, so I don't want to make this an issue or even consider it.

So, in short I think my life will become miserbale if I relocate. I don't want to relocate under any circumstances.

The problem is that if I simply tell my employer that I don't want to relocate due to personal reasons, he will definitely ask me the reasons. So what should I tell him. I don't want to spoil our future working relationship. I want to refuse without creating any hard feelings.

I think if you consider the reasons for not relocating, its pretty obvious that the root cause is money. I am already being underpaid and exploited so relocation is just not an option.

I have to make some "excuse". I can't tell the real reasons. I don't want to make another big issue out of this one.

Relocation or travelling every month, both are out of question. So how do I tackle this one ?

Ahsan
 
Author
Posts: 6049
2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I don't see what's wrong with telling him the truth. (Maybe there's something I missed in your post, or maybe there's a cultural difference I don't grasp.)

It's certainly reasonable to say that you like your current situation, be it city, friends, current obligations, or family. I can certainly imagine some of my colleagues selecting jobs based on being close to elderly parents or good communities in which to raise children. Yours may be more for monetary reasons, but you can still say, "I want to live with/near my family" and that seems inherently valid.

Cost is also a factor. I ask for different compensation in NYC than I do in Boston, because NYC is more expensive. You can make note of how your costs would go up and that their offer doesn't meet your needs--although make it clear that it's not simply a matter of money in your case. Also make clear that you would like to continue to work with this company, just that you are not prepared and/or not excited about the current relation opportunity. Perhaps you can talk with your manager about why s/he needs you to relocate and see if there are other alternatives they can come up with; e.g. instead of saying a plain "no" you say, "would this be a viable alternative...".
--Mark
 
Ranch Hand
Posts: 538
Hibernate Eclipse IDE Tomcat Server
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hi !

Americans are very strict towards contracts, simply if you contract doesn't clearly state that you must relocate in some cases, you can refuse to whatever the reason. But whatever happens tell them frankly you refuse to relocate, and ask them why they want you to. As you were successfuly working remotely for a good deal of time, THEY have to justify because by definition working remotely prevent relocating.
You can too discuss with them for help out of relocating in case it is mainly financial issue.
Anyway, be honest towards them, discuss but do not hesitate to refuse if no agreement can be found. No one may blame you for refusing big work conditions changes AFTER a contract is settled, all countries with existing social laws including of course America agree for smart job breaking in such a case.

Best regards.
 
Mark Herschberg
Author
Posts: 6049
2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Originally posted by Eric Lemaitre:

Americans are very strict towards contracts, simply if you contract doesn't clearly state that you must relocate in some cases, you can refuse to whatever the reason.



I'm not a lawyer, but with all due respect, I don't think Eric is either. If it's not specified one way or another, in the US it depends on the state laws, which can vary greatly. In your case, I'm not sure if the jourisdiction is in a US state or in your country, or maybe somewhere else altogether. More realistically, it may be moot. You can be legally in the right, but practically speaking unable to exercise that option.


--Mark
 
Eric Lemaitre
Ranch Hand
Posts: 538
Hibernate Eclipse IDE Tomcat Server
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hi !

You suspected right Mark, I am no lawyer at all. I am simply persuaded there are only 2 options in his case, either relocating is clearly stated so all is clear and he can't refuse, or it is not so it is arguable. But all "normal" labour juridictions consider "fair" and "unfair" change conditions. Learning new skills so as to be able to keep knowledge level suitable for his position is fair, he cannot refuse this change. But being relocated without any financial compensation to far locations for long without justification while he is supposed to stay in place is unfair, for potential abuses are totally obvious. In particular in his case as a remote worker he is able to work from anywhere, so relocating him to an unconvenient far location without compensation will be seen as unfair by definition by any labour juridiction.

Best regards.
 
Ranch Hand
Posts: 1272
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
In your country, you may have elaborate rights (France) or no rights (US) to keep your job under the conditions you described. A local labor lawyer could tell you.

You are correct that the larger issue is that a 1.5 year junior programmer, unless he's a young genius, will not have much of a future in the company if he refuses the transfer. You will inevitably be embarassing your superiors.

Your Choices:

1. Grit your teeth, take the transfer, and wait until your increasing value gives you the leverage to transfer back or change jobs.

2. Refuse, explain why, and hope you keep your job. I assume from your post that you need an income, so be very sure you can get another job if necessary. What reason for leaving will you give in a job interview? Are there only a few IT employers in your town? Is blacklisting a risk?

3. Get a new job now. This eliminates the risks of job-hunting after being terminated. If you current company makes a counter-offer, be careful. You may become a marked man.

Good luck.
 
Ranch Hand
Posts: 365
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hello Ahsan,

Have you ever talked personal problems to your employer and he turned down? Im sure not!

All I feel from what you wrote is, you yourself are not sure if these reasons are good ones to be presented as reasons in a professional world.

Remember, you are selling your services. Not yourself. People who hire should also be aware that they are hiring real people.. people with smal/big concerns.

First, think of solutions. Like.. may be I can do it if they pay me more money.... or I cannot do it in any case even if they give me more money as I have such and such responsibilities at home. etc
Come to a set of solutions you are open to. And then talk to them.

Make a practice to talk your real reasons with your head held high. We often hesitate to tell family reasons. But aint they the real reasons? aint they the real concerns?

If you tell them 'other reasons' they will never be able to help you even if they want to help you.

HTH
Tina
 
Tina Desai
Ranch Hand
Posts: 365
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Originally posted by Ahsan Saeed:

When I had joined the company, relocation or travelling was never discussed or even mentioned.

Can you really give it a legal turn when the employer is not violeting some contract? They did not discuss this at all! May be NOW is the time.

Now, my employer wants me to relocate for around 6 months. If I don't agree to this, he might ask me to spend atleast one week every month in the company office.

You can convey them that you will relocate for 6 months only. Not any more. So u can check if u really can't manage. And they are also forced to think that you are not interested but are helping for a first few months of a new setup.

May be u can check if spending one week in a month is the best of both worlds! Never know!

 
Ahsan Saeed
Ranch Hand
Posts: 34
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Thanks everyone,

I come from a place where we avoid getting in to legal matters - costs too much time and money.

Most employees here, especially fresh graduates are underpaid or not paid and are exploited. But still we continue to work because we don't have an option. We don't have unemployment benefits etc (although we are taxed heavily). Thus if we are thrown out we are as good as beggars.

I am doing J2ME for almost two years. An illiterate person without *any* education, working at a car wash earns something more or equal to what I get paid. Even my friends working in other companies are getting much better salaries.

If I straight away tell my employer that this was never mentioned in the terms and conditions of my employment I am likely to be thrown out. Its not that I am unaware of my rights but circumstances force me to remain submissive.

I do not want to talk about money. The last time I talked about money, things got messed up. I was only demanding a fair salary. I was fired without any warning or notice. I was unable to get another job. Companies here don't hire on merit. If you know politicians, bureaucrats or senior engineers working in companies only then you can get a job. I know none. After 4 months of unemployment and exhaustive job search I was shattered and broken. I used to see many incompetent people working in companies but I was denied even a fair trial. Anyway, I requested my employer to hire me again. He liked my free-work, so I was re-hired. I want to avoid discussing financial issues again.

I did ask my employer why he wanted me to relocate, after all I have been working with him remotely for almost 1.5 yrs. He gave some lame excuses. I asked him how did he expect to solve some problems he mentioned by my relocating for just 6 months. He smiled ( he knew, I knew he was giving me crap). Anyway he came up with more lame excuses...

He has hired people to work in the new office. Probably all will be fresh graduates. If they keep on learning on their own it might take them six months or more to give their first product. I think he wants me to do some projects with them so that they can cover up things at a faster pace.

So I guess saying something like I'd like to stay with family, elderly parents might be good. But as Tina said, I myself don't like giving such excuses. Nothing will hold me back when it comes to my career, but this situation is different.

I don't want to tell him what is fair or unfair. I don't want to discuss financial issues. He knows what he is doing. I know what he is doing. But I have to take a deep breath and politely make an excuse.

I have made an effort to explain why I have to make an "excuse" rather than having straight talk... Or do you still think I should talk about real issues instead of making excuses.
[ August 22, 2004: Message edited by: Ahsan Saeed ]
 
Ahsan Saeed
Ranch Hand
Posts: 34
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Originally posted by Mike Gershman:


2. Refuse, explain why, and hope you keep your job. I assume from your post that you need an income, so be very sure you can get another job if necessary. What reason for leaving will you give in a job interview? Are there only a few IT employers in your town? Is blacklisting a risk?



I want to supplement my income since I am unable to meet my basic needs in my current salary . A possible option is to get work on project/part time basis. I have been trying to do this and did find some success as well. Relocation even for a single day will hamper my plans.
 
Ranch Hand
Posts: 2596
Android Firefox Browser Ubuntu
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I think you should look for another Job. I agree with almost everything that Tina said. She's rightly put this as -

Remember, you are selling your services. Not yourself. People who hire should also be aware that they are hiring real people.. people with smal/big concerns.



Where are you located, your name suggests India/Pakistan, If you are in India I can help you. I *think* market is not as bad as you mention in Pakistan as well, in India this condition is impossible. If you're working on J2ME for 1.5 years you should know some companies working on this stuff. If you can prove yur technical ability, you have very good prospectus. There not many ppl working on this stuff yet.

And I think YOU yourself need to resolve your conflict regarding "excuses", if you don't like making excuses, talk straight. Since you know those guys better, and you think they have to be dealt with some "excuses", do it and then don't feel guity about it. Sometimes you need to pay in the same currency!

- Manish
 
Ranch Hand
Posts: 346
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Ahshan..

I seem to remember some Malyasian companies needing j2me develoepr sin games..I thin its $6,000 per 6 months which is stil very low..is tha thigher than what you are gettting?

Unfortunately I am not at present to the point to make new hrings at the monet otherwsie I would be looking at go getters like yorself..

Do you have any records of how fast your produce code and finish projects? If you do, this is the weapon I woudl use in fighting the location ..of course you still have to be diplomatic and use your skils in drawing him out to givve you confirmation of the real reason for the relocation..

Then once you have confirmation of the real reason you can refine your approach in fighting the relocation..


But sometimes it snot possible to reach a successfull outcome.. When I first got into j2me the company wanted me to either relocate or spend 6 hours on the road to do supervisor hand holding.. the real reason was the supervisiors had no real experience in j2me or wireless and should have not been supervisors in this area..

I ended up walking away from that project and job..


It sounds like your employer is squeezing you for more wokr for less pay by relocating you.. sorry for that bad news..

Lets see ..hold on I may have a contact for you to talk to..

His name is David Franco with 5thCell.com although he is the Aduio designer he is in on the hiring decisions of outside contractors on j2me game projects..

email is:

david@5thcell.com


I am letting him know you may be contacting him..

If you do not hear anything within a week contact me via my email in my profile and I will see what other contacts are in my addess book for you to use..

Its usually pay on completion but stil it may be higher than what you are currently getting..and you will not know until you ask..
 
Ahsan Saeed
Ranch Hand
Posts: 34
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Thanks Fred.

I will contact the person you mentioned.

I am being paid around US $150 per month. This is no big money here. I can't even meet my basic needs (housing, fooding, clothing) in this amount. Thanks to my family who are supporting me.

As to the speed of my work:
Sometime back I made a midlet that I am discussing as an example. Its a simple midlet that can download content such as wallpapers, ringtones, video clips etc using SMS (WMA). Main features were that I had to display small images of wallpapers/videos/logos on a canvas with box movement (the kind of box you see around items in Series60 devices.) On pressing the FIRE game action you could select the particular image. Apart from this I had to play the ring tones (MMAPI). The mildlet was tested on real devices (3650,6600,7650).

The entire project including testing on devices took 120 hours.

I was lucky to get this project from another company here. They were very happy with my work and they told me that they have sold it to some wireless carrier in the Middle East. Unfortunately this is not a wireless company and they don't have more projects.
 
Ranch Hand
Posts: 1324
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
ask ur company to pay for relocation fee and cars etc. also daily food fee like $100USD a day.
so if u work 5 days a week ur company will pay u $500 extra .
also project bonuses etc.
 
Tina Desai
Ranch Hand
Posts: 365
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hey.. Ahsan, Fred is being such a big help!
Hes almost instantly getting you out of the rut!

Ahsan, you know better how this person is. If he is good enough, try to work things out. If he is not, and if you did not gel with his workstyle till now, chances are you never will! Start looking.

You already have succeeded in getting part time programming work. May be you can ask them for more work. Or use the reference etc. to get yet another part time project. Now Fred is helping you. Something might materialize from this.

Apart from all these, for the long term I felt like telling -
1) reduce your ifs and buts. There are things in the life of each one of us that we cannot compromise on. Come what may. But we can work on the rest of the things to give us the best results.

I can't relocate.
I can't make it legal.
I dun want to talk.
I do not afford to do up-down.
But I have responsibilities..
If only I get more money!

What are the core things you cannot compromise on? Regardless of you having a good boss or a bad boss?

2) Take a lesson from what you go through. Talk to yourself.
I can't relocate. (Am I flexible enough?)
I can't make it legal.(Did I get my contract verified? I cannot afford a lawyer but I will make sure the terms about relocation in the contrats to come.)
I dun want to talk. (What do I fear? Can anyone run over me?)
I do not afford to do up-down.(Have I tried? Can someone give me a lift?)
But I have responsibilities..(As I have loved ones in life..)
If only I get more money!(Practical thing. I can manage up-down with it.)

Tina
 
    Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic