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I work in the software industry in India. I am planning on looking for new jobs after April. The notice period at my current job is 2 months. However, from my experience, most employers wait for a maximum of one month, and sometimes just 1 or 2 weeks.

Most of the time, an employer will hire new employees because of new projects or because the current employees cannot handle the workload. So, they expect the new employee to join the company within 1 or 2 weeks.

Since my notice period is 2 months, I was wondering if I should unofficially (verbally) tell my current employer that "I am going to look for a new job". However, from previous questions on this site, this is a very bad idea.

How can I discuss this with my boss without getting into trouble?

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    Do you know this is definitely the case, or is it just heresay? I'd be tempted to at least try to interview for a few places first, and then deal with it if it becomes a problem (though unfortunately, the only way to "properly" deal with this might be to hand in your notice and then look for jobs afterwards, which may have its risks.) – berry120 Feb 26 '18 at 11:01
  • @berry120 Yes, I have experienced lot of above this because this is my third job. Last time notice period was 1 month. Still most emplyers won't wait at least one month. – I am the Most Stupid Person Feb 26 '18 at 11:03
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    There is an inherent contradiction in the notion that most/all employers would want people to start in 1-2 weeks yet that most/all employers also have notice periods on the order of months, not weeks. Frankly I don't see how that is sustainable for job profiles with any sort of experience. I could see it happening for entry-level / code monkey jobs in India but are you sure this also applies to people with your experience level? – Lilienthal Feb 26 '18 at 11:16
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    See also all of these questions. – David K Feb 26 '18 at 13:35
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    Is it specified in your contract about what happens if you give lesser notice? – George Feb 26 '18 at 13:57
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PagMax's answer covers all the essentials very well, I will share some more insights.

How can I discuss this with my boss without getting into trouble?

You have an XY Problem here. You should avoid such prospective employers entirely, not try to figure out how to tell your current boss about your job search plans.

From my several years of experience in the Indian software industry, such employers are never worth working for. Here's why:

  • Hire and fire mindset: The company is in such a hurry to hire you because they have a specific commitment to meet. (For example, a customer will take away a project if they do not hire someone within a week.) Once that commitment is done with, you can be discarded just as easily.

  • No long term plans for employee's career: Such companies invariably have only short term goals, whereas career growth is a long term process. You will end up jumping arbitrarily from one project to another every 3 to 6 months. Such jumps are a great learning opportunity as long as they are part of a long term vision, but that is rarely the case at such companies.

  • No support for employee growth: You can forget about mentoring and training, if it is not directly relevant to the daily work (and even if it is directly relevant, in many cases). They certainly won't send you to leadership programs, "soft skills" training, or encourage you to look for "innovation opportunities", etc. since all of these "distract" you from your regular work.

  • Employees are disposable "resources": Reputed companies are willing to wait two or three months for promising candidates, because they recognize the value you bring to their team. Companies which fill a position with whoever cares to join within a week certainly do not consider the candidate's skills and growth potential as valuable.

  • Very low threshold for hiring: Since the company is hiring on a tight schedule, the hiring process is unlikely to be of very high standard. Now imagine the skill levels of the colleagues you will end up working with. (I was once offered a job directly from my resume with no interview provided I could join the next day!)

  • Uninteresting and unchallenging work: Companies which have "interesting" or "challenging" work will not hire any random candidate who can turn up within a week. As mentioned before, they are willing to wait for a skilled candidate who can bring value. Conversely, companies which can make do with anyone will most certainly assign you work that anyone can do.

  • Unrealistic deadline pressure: Companies which are in a hurry to hire will also be in a hurry to deliver. While you cannot expect to drag your feet at any company, the deadline pressure at such companies will be way too unrealistic. Moreover, if the company was unable to meet their deadline to hire the candidate, you will be already behind schedule when you join.

  • Notice period hypocrisy: Companies expect you to join within a week, but their own notice period is usually 2 or 3 months. I have questioned several such companies over this point in the interviews, and as you might expect, nobody has ever given me a satisfactory answer.

Hence, I would strongly advise you to wait for a good employer to come along, rather than trying to get it over with by landing into some job. Despite the long notice periods in India (usually 2 or 3 months), changing jobs is not that difficult, as I can notice from the "last working day" mails that I receive once a week, on an average. :-)

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But according my experience, I know that most new employer wait maximum one month and sometimes just 1, 2 weeks.

That is incorrect. I have worked in India for several years and I’ve worked for and interviewed with several companies. Irrespective of experience level, we know that we will need to wait for 2–3 months after we release the offer letter.

If the company itself has a two or three month notice period policy, how can they expect their new hires to join them in less than a month?

However, because there are many unemployed people (especially with little experience or recent graduates), who are currently not working, it is possible that the companies are able to hire someone who can join immediately.

If your new company decides to hire candidates solely based on that criteria, then you should be happy you are not working for them and move on!

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