Wednesday, September 20, 2006

technical interview for an enterprise job (continued)

Three days after the interview (the labor day weekend), I was offered the job. So, the hints I picked up are real, when they showed me around the office and introduced me to the potential peers after the technical interview. The offer was initially ~10K short to meet my current full compensation & ~5K below my current base, so I told my headhunter who relayed the good news.
The headhunter's account manager kept assuring me that they won't be able to offer more and insisted that he just signed up a professional with a 10K pay-cut. He said, and I quote, "people do that all the time." So I said, and I truly meant it, "I'll to have to decline the offer as it stands now." He didn't say anything and we bid adios . Next day, he called me. Obviously he picked up only part of the message (5k lower than my current base) and went on to bat for me. Appreciatively speaking, it worked, the client offered to match my current base. That did make me feel good and bad. "Good" in the sense that my skills and experience are truly appreciated at this new place, so my pay rate is rectified in more than one places. Sometimes I wondered whether my current "high" pay was only because my current employer was desperate in need of a systems engineer when they hired me on. "Bad" in the sense that their offer was such a low ball, so I'd expect an up-hill fight to get big raises in the future if I get in. Hope it was only because I am making too high a salary now (hmm, should I feel good about that?!)
Since the new place doesn't have ESPP, stock option, or bonus for that team, the improved offer was still a 5~10K pay-cut for me. Once I made that clear, the account manager again assured me that their client wouldn't be able to offer any more. Sure enough, the client rescinded the offer the next day. Later I learned from my source, that the hiring manager was offended, since my pay situation was not explained or presented clearly to him, thus he took that as a needy/greedy give-me-more-and-more request, taking advantage of his good faith effort to sweeten the offer last time.

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