Joshua Halim

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since Jun 15, 2004
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Recent posts by Joshua Halim

This discussion about rating self is quite intriguing. I have never asked this question, but if I am, I will tell the interviewer that it probably will not be much benefit for him to tell him how I rate my own skill without any standard. Instead, I will ask him what criterias according to him will make someone a 1, a 5, or a 10. Then, I can tell him where I think I stand on his (own) rating system. If he still leave it as an open question, I will at least tell him the reasoning why I rate myself a 5, a 7, or a 9 (don't think will ever say I am a 10). E.g. I will iterate specific topics or areas of the technology and which one I know well, how long have I spent time working on those areas, etc.

Asking a candidate to rate himself (w/out much standard/guidelines) seems to me like asking a developer to develop an app/feature without much detail. An inexperienced one will simply jump into creating one, assuming he knows what needs to be done. An experienced one will ask back (and keep asking) until the client (in this case the interviewer) give him a concrete target to work on. If not (like in many cases), he will at least states some assumptions on the solution, doing his best to show that his solution is correct (whether the requirement is correct or not, it is the client's failure to make it clear to the developer).
15 years ago
Thank's for the response Mark.

Things go well. 'Fortunately' my supervisor is 'an alcoholic'. He canceled his day off and came in today. Submitted my resignation letter (brief, thank's to your past posting), told him in person the reasons, and the response was professional. I told a few other people that I have worked with or have close relationship.

Hopefully I will be leaving without burning any bridges. Probably will need them sometime, at least for future references (hope not too soon).
15 years ago
Is the junior developer earning way above his market value or the senior developer is earning below his market value? How are the earnings compared to other developers in the company?

If it is an isolated incident where the junior developer just got lucky or being favorited and earn much more than he should have earn (based on what he does and his performance), I would keep my mouth shut.

If it is apparent that I (the senior developer) am being treated unfair and I know I am doing my job well, I will not hesitate to ask my manager to discuss the situation. I will be careful not too focus on the fact that he is earning more than I am, but I will focus on the indication that I am being paid less than I deserve based on what I do and my performance. I will prepare myself with facts that shows indeed I have a higher value than the junior developer. Managers do not like people who nag or who ask for more only. Managers may (good manager will) listen to facts and reason.

However, I will also be ready to look for another job if things goes south.
So, if the economy / job market is not doing too well, I will probably bite my tongue until then.
15 years ago

Originally posted by Manish Hatwalne:

You need time to unwind, and it's holidays which can get you charged up.

It depends on how you look at work. Ideally work should be both for income and satisfaction - it should not jeopordize or risk your health (of course there are exceptions). There needs to be stresses at work place - as long as it is healthy. If I have to have at least x number weeks of vacation just to unwind, I will probably reconsider the job and look for something else. It is just my personal opinion.

It also depends on the culture. In Asia, I know some countries that (at least used to) have Monday - Saturday as working day and rarely companies give more than 2 weeks of vacation.
15 years ago
I am about to submit my resignation letter next week (that will be a two weeks notice). The problem is my supervisor is off on Monday. So, it will be a day short of two weeks notice when I give him the notice on Tuesday. The company is small and has no employee handbook so far, and it is my understanding, the two weeks notice is a common professional courtesy for resignation.

I don't want to burn any bridges when I leave, so I am wondering whether that one day will matter.

Another option will be to give the resignation letter to HR or the big boss on Monday and ask him to keep it private until I tell my supervisor in person the next day. But, since it is a small company and close-knitted, I do not think it will be a good idea (make my supervisor not the first one to know).

Any opinion?
15 years ago
Thank you guys.

The company is in US. What Mark and Fred said was what I also usually saw in companies in US, I even had an offer once that offer 3 weeks right away and 4 weeks after 5 years.

After reading the offer letter further, I will actually get 2 weeks in the first year until 5th year, then 3 weeks from that point on. But the vacation is not accrued per pay-check (which what I also usually see). It is accrued at the end of the first 6 months and second 6 months, then at the end of each 12 months thereafter. So, it means in the first year I work there I will get only 5 days vacation as well as the next year. Then 2 weeks thereafter.

I decided it is not a big deal, since we just have a baby daughter this year, and we found it is a lot of work to have a trip/vacation with her. So, we figure that we probably will not take a long vacation until she is 2 or more. And if the work is enjoyable (which so far I think it will), getting Sat-Sun off for each week is good enough for me to relax. Plus, the office is less than 10 minutes from home.

I decided not to fight for more vacation because it is a standard policy and there is a special circumstances in my hiring that I will do me more harm than good to negotiate for more vacation.

Thank's a lot for the responses. It has helped me to sort things thru.
15 years ago
How common is the following vacation benefit for Software Developer?
- 1st year: 5 days vacation
- 2nd - 5th year: 10 days vacation
- 6th - ... : 15 days vacation
plus 40 hours personal/sick leave per year.

I got a job offer with the above benefit. I like the job and the opportunity is good. The company is about 400 employees.

15 years ago
There is a saying that says : "Be careful what you wish for, you may get it." In lieu to Don's posting, we could probably say : "Be careful what you put in your resume, you may get it."

I agree with Don. You have to think of your resume not only a reflection of
what you can do, but also the first clue for prospective employee of what
you are looking for. If I am still working full time during a job search,
I do not want to waste my time for interview (even just a phone interview),
if it could have been known that the position is not what I am looking for.

It happened to me before, got contacted for a phone interview and I pass
to the second interview one, only to find out that I didn't qualify because
there was a misunderstanding on my skill that I put in the resume (I told
the truth in the first interview and the interviewer did not seem to mind, but the second one certainly did).

After that, I did similar to Don. I trim my resume (even though may not as extreme as Don).

Since then I got an interview then an offer for a position that was aligned with what I wanted.

Some suggest to put jargons in resume just so that you can pass the HR scan.
That is probably fine, but I would ask to make sure I understand what
the position is about and the skill set it needs. I think it is better to say 'No thank you' up front and wait for the next opportunity rather than wasting time in a series of interview just to find out later that you got an offer that you could have known you don't want.
[ December 10, 2004: Message edited by: Joshua Halim ]
15 years ago
Thank's Jeroen for the warning.
I guess it is the lack of corporate experience that triggers my paranoid.
15 years ago

I just finished a phone interview with the hiring manager. I e-mailed him
a formal thank you letter afterward. At the same time, I was setup to have
second phone interview with another manager. In light of this, should
I expect to hear back from him (regarding the thank you letter)?

I am probably just unnescessarily being paranoid, but since thank you letter
can be a crucial factor, I am just wondering whether he gets it or not.
15 years ago
Thank's guys for the inputs.
I found them quite helpful.
15 years ago
I need advice regarding providing reference in job interview.
I have been working in company X for more than 5 years. It is my first job right after graduate from college. Currently, I am looking for a better position, and I want to be ready when the prospective employer ask for reference. Usually you gave your previous employers as reference, but I have none. The closest thing I can think of is a professor in my almameter where I had done some projects for him back then. But that was more than 5 years ago. Will that still be acceptable reference? Is it also acceptable to provide friends (with professional occupation) as reference? Any advice or other ideas?

15 years ago