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Old 09-21-2015, 12:26 PM
 
1 posts, read 1,736 times
Reputation: 10

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I've been agonizing over two job offers for the past couple of days:

1) Indefinite Temp job with midsized tech company doing sales operations for $30/hr. Job was initially posted as a perm job but the hiring manager said they needed to assess their budget for the first quarter before making any permanent hires. They could not make me any promises on whether or not conversion would ever be an option.

pros: high pay, opportunity to begin a new career and learn new tools

cons: temp work, long hours at the end of the month

2) Low paying benefits adviser position w/ a Federal agency. pay will start at 37k/year.

pros: amazing benefits, excellent work life balance, government jobs are really hard to get,

cons: low pay

Some background about me. I've been doing customer support for the past couple years at a tech company and am fed up with the job on account of the lack of work life balance and constant micromanagement. My current pay is 52k/year. I have an average amount of student debt (25k) and a few car payments leftover (around $200/month). I live with my partner who is very financially stable and takes care of the majority of our costs of living.

At this point, I'm just looking to get out of my current job. Also, if someone could offer me some insight into work as a fed and what the career ladder is like, I would highly appreciate it.
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Old 09-21-2015, 12:53 PM
 
Location: Greater NYC, USA
2,760 posts, read 2,711,064 times
Reputation: 1717
52k is about the same as 30/h.

Since you are paying an hourly wage, you are going to get compensated for long hours at the end of the month, no ?

I think the greatest value to you is interesting experience that will let you go places and a dead end government job is not that place.

In a federal job you will have good benefits and regular annual raises, federal jobs almost never pay as well as industry. married people with families, once spouse usually works for the benefits while other works for for the cash. fed job is where you work for benefits, you can work a fed job for 20 years and retire early.

I always prefer industry to government jobs.
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Old 09-21-2015, 03:26 PM
 
191 posts, read 154,642 times
Reputation: 308
In federal service, "career ladder" positions are rated at a higher grade, but, if there are no "fully qualified" applicants, management may offer the job as a "career ladder" where the successful applicant can take the job at the lower grade, and provided that the employee demonstrated adequate career development, they can be promoted to a higher grade on an annual basis.
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Old 09-21-2015, 08:17 PM
 
423 posts, read 294,012 times
Reputation: 303
Go federal. Get some bs degree and start moving up in pay.
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Old 09-21-2015, 08:28 PM
 
Location: Sugarmill Woods , FL
6,235 posts, read 5,700,618 times
Reputation: 13622
Federal = Defined Benefit Pension!
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Old 09-21-2015, 08:35 PM
 
1,091 posts, read 778,363 times
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My wife just transferred from Fashion in NYC to a government job and it has been absolutely life changing for us. Our health coverage is AMAZING. We went from $700 a month for garbage coverage, to $280 for the best coverage you could hope for. She is part of a union and is guaranteed 5% raises each year (this is really nice when it comes to planning for the future). Job postings are listed online regularly for current government employees to advance, you don't have to HOPE you get the new opening because someone threw you a bone, you can simply apply for it. Shes working toward a pension. Starting out she got 12 vacation days, 15 sick days, 14 holidays and 4 administrative days. It really is a 9-5 type job, if you stay even 15 mins late your boss will think you're a super star and tell you to stop working so hard. There is also security (knock on wood) but the odds of being laid off in the private sector are like 5% in the government its like 0.3%. PLUS, in your case the state will pretty much pay for you to take night classes at the local community college which you can use to make more $.

We were lucky enough that she was able to transfer her NYC skills and amazingly got a pay increase. But we said it would likely be worth it even if it had been a decrease of like $20,000.

What you're really asking is whats better long term vs. short term. My vote is take the government job, and let them pay for you to take night classes. If you're even a semi-hard worker I can almost guarantee that $37k will be $75k inside of 10 years, and at that point you'll only be 15 years away from a full pension.
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Old 09-21-2015, 09:28 PM
 
3,724 posts, read 1,919,336 times
Reputation: 5139
Quote:
Originally Posted by postinggreen View Post

2) Low paying benefits adviser position w/ a Federal agency. pay will start at 37k/year.

Hmmm. Sounds like SSA. If it's SSA, go for it. Lots of opportunity to advance from that position.

Even if it's not SSA, you're right. It is VERY hard to get a federal job these days. Get in, get tenured and leave if you must, but you don't want to be saying "shoulda woulda coulda" when the fed jobs dry up and you can't get in later on. You WILL be kicking yourself for not taking the opportunity when you had the chance.
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Old 09-21-2015, 09:47 PM
 
Location: My beloved Bluegrass
14,333 posts, read 10,283,241 times
Reputation: 19292
Quote:
Originally Posted by ericp501 View Post
My wife just transferred from Fashion in NYC to a government job and it has been absolutely life changing for us. Our health coverage is AMAZING. We went from $700 a month for garbage coverage, to $280 for the best coverage you could hope for. She is part of a union and is guaranteed 5% raises each year (this is really nice when it comes to planning for the future). Job postings are listed online regularly for current government employees to advance, you don't have to HOPE you get the new opening because someone threw you a bone, you can simply apply for it. Shes working toward a pension. Starting out she got 12 vacation days, 15 sick days, 14 holidays and 4 administrative days. It really is a 9-5 type job, if you stay even 15 mins late your boss will think you're a super star and tell you to stop working so hard. There is also security (knock on wood) but the odds of being laid off in the private sector are like 5% in the government its like 0.3%. PLUS, in your case the state will pretty much pay for you to take night classes at the local community college which you can use to make more $.

We were lucky enough that she was able to transfer her NYC skills and amazingly got a pay increase. But we said it would likely be worth it even if it had been a decrease of like $20,000.

What you're really asking is whats better long term vs. short term. My vote is take the government job, and let them pay for you to take night classes. If you're even a semi-hard worker I can almost guarantee that $37k will be $75k inside of 10 years, and at that point you'll only be 15 years away from a full pension.
Your wife got a job with a different government than my neighbors up here near DC. I believe the last raise they got was 1%, after a 3 year raise freeze. Those paying for healthcare have been paying between $350-500/month. Oh, and the pension is now a Thirft Savings Plan.
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Old 09-21-2015, 10:46 PM
 
Location: Tennessee at last!
1,888 posts, read 1,914,209 times
Reputation: 3767
I am employed with the federal government.

1. When you are approaching retirement age everyone will be jealous because you get SS plus a pension plus thrift saving benefits--you put in money and they will match the first 5% giving you 5% more than you make. No matter what put in 5% to get that free match! You can put in more if you want.

2. Friends and family that laughed at my salary 25 years ago and are now retiring with only ss are jealous--they say things about federal government benefits that are not nice, but it is because they are jealous. I took the low wages for the benefits. Everything balances in life

3. Wages will always be low, and we have had maybe 1% in raises in the past 4-5 years. When there is disagreements on budget things in the federal government the employees in the executive service pay with lower wages. Congressional and white house staff will continue to get high raises if you are going with one of those jobs.

4. There is a variety of medical benefits, pretty good work/life balance--flexible work schedules, spouse can be same sex and get benefits, etc.

5. The politics can be BAD, cream does rise to the top, but so does scum, so know that at times you will have scum over you and you can change positions, gripe, put up with it, quit, or just out wait them. I have had some of the worst managers I could imagine, and also some of the best in the federal workplace. Some of the managers are very corrupt, and you have to make sure they do not pull you into their antics as you will be the one that falls, not them when / if they get called on it. Expect to deal with mangers that should not be mangers. Many agencies have leadership classes that select those they will groom for future openings--you must have a recommendation from a manager to attend or be in the program. ITs a club, not a selection process to get the best, just the 'best connected'. So join the club, if you can and want, or know you may have to live with it.

6. You can move up in the federal government, but it generally takes moving geographically to go very high.

7. I have 2 years until I can retire with 30 years, looking forward to it, glad for the benefits. I was able to do some awesome things, but also had to swallow a lot of ##it along the way.

8. Federal jobs are hard to get as they are reducing the federal work force and budget. Also there are many hiring preferences so just anyone can not get a job easily--vets, students, etc. get preferences under different programs.

9. I do not know you, but if you think you can stick it out 30 years, knowing that at times you will work for scum, take it. If the valley times when you will have to work for scum will upset you, then walk away from it. Its not worth it if you are not going to stick it out until the pension! In that case go for the quick cash.

Last edited by lae60; 09-21-2015 at 11:00 PM..
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Old 09-22-2015, 02:28 AM
 
6,821 posts, read 2,869,164 times
Reputation: 4332
You must be a veteran to get offered a fed job?
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