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Old 02-12-2014, 01:26 PM
912 posts, read 1,253,263 times
Reputation: 2276


Originally Posted by summer_land View Post
I did tell the HR recruiter that I used to live in CA and grew up there and have been considering moving to CA for quite some time now, but was only waiting for the right opportunity. All true too. The company I'm applying for is a small, locally owned financial firm which San Diego does not have a lot of. SD does not have a lot of any jobs, so I'd be lucky if I get this one. The one advantage I have is that I come from the Twin Cities, Minnesota where there's a lot of businesses up here, and so I have a good resume with great experience from major financial corporations as well as a small financial firm similar to the one I'm applying.

HR told me up front already that there's no relocation package, which I expected. I was asking for assistance on how to persuade her/them even more to view me as a strong candidate despite my location, not if I should go to the interview if they don't help pay for cost of interviewing there. I'm willing to pay to go there because I want to move to SD that much, but I told her I would be willing to go there only if I know I'm a final candidate. Whatever the case, I'll learn from it, and I may just be stuck in MN forever because we still have one of the lowest unemployment rates here. The long winter nearly kills me every year. This is not the way to live....

I was 16 when we moved from central CA to Minnesota and the job market back then in CA was also terrible (don't think it ever changed). Though it was sunny and happy, it was so hard to get a job (even at a fast food restaurant). Then I moved to MN and there were so many to choose from. If I do get this job in SD, I hope I'm making the right decision as it would be hard to find another job should I get laid off.
It's not impossible to get a job long-distance. I've done it twice, at two very different stages of my life. You are automatically going to be at a slight disadvantage over someone local with your exact qualifications, just because of the distance. You wouldn't necessarily be able to start as quickly, you might run into moving complications that would distract you excessively once you begin, if you get there and hate it, you would be more inclined to leave after a short time, etc.

To rise above it as much as possible, I would just emphasize your enthusiasm for the position and how your qualifications and specific experience are perfectly suited for it. Offer a Skype interview, and then if the time comes for a face to face interview, schedule an extra day or two to get out there and make sure that not just the company, but the city, seems like a good fit for you. Be honest with yourself, and don't just let your desire to get out of MN blind you to any warning signs if you see them.

As far as other issues, it's possible that you'd get the job, get out there, and it doesn't work out -- either from your end or the company's. It would be crummy of the company to have you move out there on your own dime then terminate you quickly, but it's not unheard of. Do you have savings? I would have at least 3 months of living expenses (SD living expenses, not MN) saved up, as well as moving costs (+20%). If you do not have these savings, and you're attempting to move to a place where you don't know anyone or have family, I strongly urge you to stay put until you do.

I know it feels like you'll be stuck where you are forever, but having had experience otherwise, I can promise you that in almost every case it's better to stay "stuck" for awhile longer in a place rather than move before you're financially ready to do so. Best of luck!
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Old 02-12-2014, 02:36 PM
Location: SLC, UT
1,571 posts, read 2,292,912 times
Reputation: 3848
I disagree with the posters saying not to fly to an interview on your own dime. It just depends on what type of job it is. If the job is lower management or more entry-level, or it's a very small firm (basically, if your pay will be sort of middle-of-the-road), then I doubt they will pay. They don't need to, because there will be plenty of candidates in California who can do the job and won't require expenses like flying in for a job interview or moving costs.

If your goal is to get a job in California because you want to move there, then you should expect to have to fly out there at some point for interviews. I think it would be very difficult to get a mid-level or entry-level job with a company when they had never met you.

The best way to convince them would be to actually move to CA. Failing that, the most you can do is really emphasize that you grew up there, that you have family and friends who still live there (basically, you have a good support network there), and that if the last step in hiring you would be for you to fly out there to meet them in person, that you're willing to do it (just make sure that you really are their choice, provided you're willing to fly out there - you don't want to find out that you're only one candidate out of ten when you get there).

By the way, even if you don't still have family and friends who live in SD, just pretend that you do. Say that you have aunts, uncles, cousins, friends from school that you've stayed in contact with, and that you could move in temporarily with one of them until you find your own apartment/house. This helps the company feel like you won't take a job there, only to decide you can't be away from family/friends and move back home to the state you came from (this has happened a few times at the company I work for now, so they almost never hire from out of state anymore). It also makes them think that it will be less of a big procedure for you to move, which makes it seem more likely that you will move.

Like I said, one of the best options to let them know you're serious is to just go ahead and move to CA, even without a job. If you can save up what you'll need for about six months, you should be OK (a lot of people will say three months, but with this economy, you can't be positive that you'll get a job within three months). Once living in California, you will have much better luck landing a job, because companies don't have to worry about hiring someone they haven't met in person, and it also shows that you're more dedicated to living in CA by actually living in CA at the time that you interview.
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Old 02-12-2014, 03:26 PM
799 posts, read 1,291,957 times
Reputation: 1149
Originally Posted by Blondebaerde View Post
Sure, I can help: anything done "at your cost" flying for interviews isn't acceptable. That's chickensiht. Let me guess: you're working with foreigners in the recruiting process?

You must be pretty good at what you do, that's something. Making the final cut, for certain level roles, is an accomplishment. I've been called a "perfect candidate" once or twice during interviews, then shoved out the door a day later when they find the (ahem) more-perfect candidate. The offers usually come from HR and other hiring authorities who try very hard to hide their enthusiasm, but I can see they like me. Point being, I wouldn't trust anything HR says about anything at all, ever, at any firm. HR people come from a bizarre tribe of sorority sweethearts and other plastic-people, in my observation. Only winning move is to shovel it right back at them, twice as hard.

I've been flown out for interviews twice that I can recall. Neither was "at my cost" but then again both were for mid-senior management roles at pretty good $. Second time resulted in an offer, which I subsequently turned down. First was a successful failure: learned from it, but was not offered the position.

Wonder if the above is the post-Recession trend these days. Both my events were pre- ; one in '01, other early '08 before the big economic storm hit.

Unless you're intending to take a short holiday in San Diego to accompany the interview...not a bad idea...may want to think on what is occurring. And, how much you will or will not be making in terms of salary, and why they are making you do anything at *your* cost. In a negotiation, if the other party starts to act like they're doing "you" a favor, time to walk away from the table and/or make your position abundantly clear. Some call it "going to the balcony," i.e. objectively assessing both party's assumptions and working towards what is fair. Keep emotion out of it.

Is it a buyer's or seller's market in what you do? Really? Mine is a seller's market; that is leverage in negotiation. If you don't know, find out.

CA is expensive, more so every day, though gorgeous in many ways. Good luck with all that. Be mindful they're now shaving off about 10% in state and local taxes, up from about 7% when I lived there couple decades ago. I have fond memories of seven years in Bay Area, other than the expense and people pressing in on all sides 24/7. The craziness the police let people get away with was also surprising, but I was something of a sportbike squid at the time and didn't really mind the laxness: anarchy has pros and cons.

Best post about this situation. I agree totally.
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Old 02-12-2014, 04:00 PM
6,473 posts, read 10,434,934 times
Reputation: 6352
Originally Posted by chickenfriedbananas View Post
This is pretty much it, right here. It's how badly they need someone and how badly someone needs them. I'd never agree to pay more than 50 percent of the total costs of getting to an interview, but the thing I'd be looking for is whether they're willing to invest at least half and hopefully more than that. Employment's always a two-way street. If you're an employee who's super skilled and extremely qualified, perhaps you can call your own shots, but the reality is, there are a lot of qualified employees out there these days. The whole decision about whether to pay or not pay is more a matter of two things:

1) Is this company willing to 'invest' at least some money to recruit and train people?

2) Are they serious enough about me to entice me out there by paying at least half (and ideally more) of my expenses?

3) If the answer to one or both of those questions is 'no', how badly do I want this job?

And in order to answer question #3, I'd need to have done my research and long-term planning to know what I can expect to get out of this employer.

I would definitely agree that it's not a good idea to go out to an interview completely on one's own dime, but someone who isn't willing to pay even a portion of their own costs to an interview had better hope they've got a golden skill set and track record. Otherwise they're not likely to get a second look. It's a very competitive market out there.

The good news is, if you can get them to pay for your interview costs, then they have to think about that once they've gone through with it. They're not likely to waste your time. They've already invested in you to a degree so that means they're probably serious about hiring you.

I agree. If they're willing to pay for something, then I know they're actually interested in me.

If they don't hire me, then no harm has been done to me "financially" for wasting my time on a "hope and a dream".
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Old 02-13-2014, 06:10 PM
2,699 posts, read 4,426,530 times
Reputation: 1946
Originally Posted by Yellow Saltbox View Post
Stress that you are tired of the weather in MN and are planning to move, whether to this job or another one. Indicate that you've already made up your mind and you are only looking at opportunities below some geographical marker. Make it seem that for you, it's a given that you will be moving; the only question is where.

I believe that you are the perfect candidate, based on the recruiter's comment. I disagree with ragnarkar.
Also, say that you have family and friends in SD and want to move closer to them. I don't know your position, but you can also mention that you don't need relocation money.
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