I have been given a project deadline with a total duration of 1 month, but I finish the project for just 2 weeks. Now, what should I do?

Past Experiences:
What I experienced before when I chose to tell it to my boss is he wants me to do jobs that are not related to my job description, the sad part is I am being force to do those things later on because they find that I can do that job much better to the other employees. Those jobs are like editing of documents, troubleshooting computers and networks, then many more. But my real job is to develop and maintain a website.

Now I have options such ask telling it to him again which will lead to that same thing again. Or should I kept it to me? This way I can manage my time to study more regarding my job description which will really help me in my career.

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    are you sure you finished the project? for example did you write the documentation or kept a log of the changes you did? did you make your code readable? Software development is not only "it works, I'm done." but there are also beside activities to complete (depending on your company's policy) Commented Sep 12, 2014 at 6:55
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    Yeah, you are really right. Software development is not only about "it works, I'm done". But with regards to the company policy and base on my task there is no need for documentation, and other stuffs. That's why now although I can tell that it is finish I just kept on looking for a better functions, make the code shorter, etc. Commented Sep 12, 2014 at 6:59
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    "There is no need for documentation" - what fantasy world is this in? There is always a need for documentation. If company policy is "we don't document the software we write", company policy is horribly broken.
    – alroc
    Commented Sep 12, 2014 at 14:36
  • Yeah you are right! That's why in my spare time I document the website that I create, also re-factoring the codes. This is really horrible. The policy is very wrong. Commented Sep 12, 2014 at 23:32
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    Hey Cary, you have a few closed questions on our site. My suggestion is to do a search prior to asking, to help avoid duplicates, and if you do find a similar post that doesn't have the answer you're looking for, you can include a link to that post in your question and explain how it's different. This helps you get the best answers by avoiding rehashing information that is already out there. Please see How to Ask for more guidance.
    – jmort253
    Commented Sep 13, 2014 at 19:32

3 Answers 3


Your boss wanting you to handle tasks that are outside your job description is an entirely different issue. Tell him what you're doing.

You will never find a reason that justifies hiding what you are doing to your manager. A book could probably be written about why this is a terrible idea, but here are a few thoughts :

  • for your manager : he has resources he's not aware of, and thus can not do his job properly

  • for you : 1) is regularly lying about your activity the kind of relationship you want to have with your boss? Don't get it wrong I'm not judging here, but I for one would find it extremly uncomfortable 2) if he finds out (without more information about your job I actually don't see any reason why this wouldn't happen sooner or later) you're in trouble. Big time. Like potentially without-a-job trouble

So go to your manager and tell him you finished the project and are available for new tasks. If he gives you tasks you consider he shouldn't give you, discuss it with him. If he doesn't wanna hear it, that's unfortunate, and if it is really unbearable for you maybe it's time to look for a different job. But not liking the tasks your boss gives you is NOT an excuse for lying to him and being unprofessional

  • This is absolutely great and straight forward suggestion. :) Commented Sep 12, 2014 at 23:35
  • Glad I could help :)
    – ero
    Commented Sep 14, 2014 at 19:21

A situation like yours is a good time to start working on backlog items like refactoring code, improving the deployment or setting up a continuous integrationt environment. I.e. things which usually get pushed back as they have no direct business benefit.

But you should make sure to tell your boss what you are actually working on. It is his job to know what you are doing and it reflects badly on him if he doesn't. It is never a good idea to make your boss look bad. There should be some kind of status meeting where you could just tell him "I'm now working on X as Y was less work than expected".

He may still ask you to switch to one of those tasks you are trying to avoid, but in my experience most bosses are glad if their subordinates occupy themselves with sensible work without the need to be micro managed.

  • Unfortunately my boss here is taking advantage of the resources he have to the point that sometimes I do his duties. By the way, thank you for this great answer. Commented Sep 12, 2014 at 23:37

There are also situations where lying about still working on something when you are not can become fraud. If the work is for a client and they are billed by the hour, for you to pretend to use 120 hours when it took you only 60 means that they are being billed twice as much as they should have been.

Your boss has the absolute need to know when you are finished with your work because he may have a backlog of other work that needs to be done. You are expected to work when you are getting paid not sit around doing nothing because you might not enjoy the tasks assigned if you bring it up. And if he notices you are not working when you claim to still have work to do, well then you could be well on the track for eventually getting fired if your performance does not improve.

Now there is nothing that says you can't go to him with a plan for what to do during the slack period such as refactoring something that needs improvement.

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