I am starting a new job as a permanent employee. The company is very small and has no office. I think some of the people I will be working with are located in different time zones. The person who made my offer letter was the CEO. Before signing it I asked what the typical work hours were. He replied "regular 8 hour days". I had intended to find out if there's a certain time each day I need to start working by (for example 8AM local time).

The person who did the interview and will be doing the on boarding is someone else. Should I email him

Hi. Is there a particular time I should start or end work each day? Also am I right in thinking we are in different time zones? Is there any conventions we use when discussing times?

In past interviews, I sensed people found the topic awkward to discuss. In one of them the interviewers replied "the important thing is the work gets done".

I have had a very difficult time finding a permanent job that makes use of my degree. Many people find this surprising as "the news always says billion dollar tech companies are hiring". On top of that, the last time I worked as a contractor things did not go well (I think it was some type of scam - not in the sense that I didn't get paid, but the person who hired me got more money just for having me there and wanted to set me up for failure so I would be easily terminated). I feel a lot of pressure that this job needs to go well. I'm starting to psych myself out. Any tips on how I can feel prepared to get off to a good start?

  • Do you not have employment contracts in Canada? I would expect such trivial "rules" as working hours and flexibility would be detailed in there.
    – musefan
    Commented Mar 3, 2022 at 15:05

2 Answers 2


Based on the fact that:

  • has no office
  • some of the people I will be working with are located in different time zones
  • The first attempt go the response "regular 8 hour days"

The questions you are trying to ask are:

  • Are there specific times I must be available for standard/required meetings? These could be staff meetings, project meetings, or mid-week updates.
  • Are there core hours that I must be available to facilitate communication.

The person who will know this is the person you will be reporting to. That could be anybody in the company. So that will be the person you are trying to identify.

That means that that is your first task. Ask the person who did the interview, who you team lead/ manager will be.

  • 1
    It's also quite likely that different teams within the company will have their own ways of working based on where they are and any other commitments they have, so if you were dealing with the CEO before you should ask your actual team leader/PM/line manager. If the times they're working are a real problem you need to discuss this with the team.
    – Stuart F
    Commented Mar 3, 2022 at 11:49

Wait until you start

You can't do anything with this information, and the person who interviewed you may or may not have anything to do with your expected work hours. The only thing to be gained is they read something into your request that you didn't intend.

All will be revealed when you start the job.

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