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First day of work: surprises

May 28th, 2013 at 06:15 pm

I survived the first day of work. It was tiring.

It took me an hour to get in there but an hour and 25 minutes to get home on account of very heavy traffic on the Interstate. To give you an idea of the congestion, it's only 33 miles. I took a different route this time which probably cut in half the amount of time I spend on the Interstate, but it probably would not be workable to take all back roads and avoid it entirely.

Just this morning, before leaving for work, I idly calculated my daily gross pay and I was surprised to see that the gross pay for a 3-day work week would be $3,536 a month, more than enough to get by and have some savings to spare. (Remember, no mortgage now.) The gross for a full 40 hour week would be $5,893.

I recalled that the hiring manager said at the interview she needed someone there 5 days a week, on site and that they really needed two new people, not just one. So I had the impression they were swamped with work.

So imagine my surprise, shortly after arriving there, when the hiring manager is showing me around and I wanted to clarify my work hours for this week and next, ie, that this first week Iíd only be working two days (so I can tie up some other loose ends) and then I would start in full-time the following week. Thatís what the plan was and what I discussed with the recruiter.

But the hiring manager said oh, no, we decided weíd have you work just 3 days a week to start and bring you on full time down the road. Didnít anyone tell you?? I said NO! No one did. Iím not sure exactly WHO was supposed to tell me but I imagine someone from their HR should have communicated that to the recruiter, who would have told me. But someone dropped the ball.

Imagine how upsetting that could be to someone who really needed full-time work. I had, after all, quit my p/t job already! In hindsight, I could have conceivably kept both jobs, although in truth it would seem to be very unworthwhile to hang onto the lower paying proofreading job I had.

And truth be told, after experiencing that awful commute one day, I am relieved that they want me to start at three days a week. It could actually be ideal for me, the happy middle between dealing with the long commute and still having some free time and sanity. I might never want to do any more than that! I wonder how long theyíd want me at 3 days a week?
I really feel so out of the loop on this when youíd think Iíd be first to know. At least give me a chance to discuss it with you.

Aside from that, it was a rather uneventful first day. I attended two brief meetings and came away understanding very little of what was discussed. The marketing group is very young. I think Iím the oldest one of the bunch. I did some simple proofing and spent most of the day reading stuff on their website, as directed by my manager. I hope I can find some people to connect with/relate to; as I said, the people there are very young.

They use Macs there and so that took some getting used to. I used one at the last f/t job I had, but that was back in 2009. They also use Google Docs which Iíve used before, but donít really understand well. So thereís a lot of new stuff to get used to.
One funny thing is that the same HR woman who worked with me when I first joined my last employer in 2008 also did the same here! In fact, about 10 people from that last f/t employer of mine migrated over to this company. I didnít know any of them well, but I did recognize some faces.

8 Responses to “First day of work: surprises”

  1. creditcardfree Says:

    Wow! That is a surprise to go from thinking you are working 5 days down to three, but I can see for you that would be ideal. I hope the transition goes well.

  2. rob62521 Says:

    Hope you get some rest. I think first day at work is very stressful.

  3. My English Castle Says:

    You're right, that wold be a shocker for someone, but good for you! Nice balance.

  4. Petunia 100 Says:

    Yes, you SHOULD have been the first to know! Nonetheless, this may be absolutely perfect for you! You'll still be making 42k per year, and have 4 days off per week. With your freelance income to boot, you'll be able to add to savings at a fair clip.

    Will you be working the same 3 days each week?

  5. FrugalTexan75 Says:

    I hope this type of breakdown in communication isn't an indicator of things to come. But either way, 3 days a week probably is a good way to ease back into full time and the commute. Glad the day went well otherwise! *If you need any help with Google docs, I'd be happy to help you out.

  6. laura Says:


    Well, despite the shock, I am glad that you can make it work!

  7. Joan.of.the.Arch Says:

    What?! I am stunned that they would interview and hire you for full time and then pull the rug out from under you!

  8. CB in the City Says:

    Yeah, they really goofed up, and they're lucky that you can make it work for you.

    I am in a young office, too. I have found friends, despite the age difference. People are people, after all is said and done.

    My commute is longer, but I only have a few years to go. And I also have the possibility of telecommuting at least a little while when our office moves into new space. They'll need time to build out the offices, so I'm on the list to work from home during the transition! Whoo-hoo! I'm hopeful they will see the value of it and make it permanent, at least a few days a week.

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