5

I recently started a new job, after multiple offers. One of the offers still stands. There were two things which made my decision: the work itself and some particular benefits.

I clarified those prior to signing the contract. Between this date and my starting the company made a change, this benefit was almost completely removed. The other offer is now better in this respect and every other except tool choice and the specific subject domain (where it's substantially worse).

The company is a startup and doesn't pay well, I was happy to forego many benefits as money is tight but am considering asking for some compensation (a one off payment I know they have budget for) given the changes they made substantially change the attractiveness of the position for me.

Is this reasonable?

I was considering waiting for my 1-1 to bring it up, is this a good time and how should I broach the issue?

I suspect my manager, another recent hire, is also upset about this so hope he'd be sympathetic.

I'm concerned because the companies careers page dramatically overstates benefits, I consider it dishonest, and new starters will find out immediately. This can't be a healthy way to start a relationship. They were aware of how important the benefit was to me and haven't acknowledged that. I worry about what else they might do.

Ideally I'd like the benefit resinstated within the spirit of their website, but I think this is unrealistic. Or, I'd like some small amount in compensation. As I have a back up I can to take risks, but hope to stay with the company, having improved my relationship with them. I've worked hard, got good results, and always behave professionally, the problem I describe here is the only negative aspect of our relationship as far as I know.

  • Is what they removed an extra perk you negotiated for; or something that was part of the company standard benefits package and was removed from everyone. It's an important distinction; because the latter is something your hiring manager likely had no control over, and quite possibly was unaware that a change was being contemplated. – Dan Neely Jul 27 '15 at 10:40
  • Put the boot on the other foot. If you claimed in the interview that you had N skills, and then turned out to have only N - 5 skills, what would they do? (Replace skills with experience or something else, if you prefer). – Masked Man Jul 27 '15 at 18:09
  • The perk is advertised on their website, still now. It was taken from everybody. My manager tweaked it in the induction documents to something closer to what's advertised as he knew that was important to me, he' also unhappy. He said the documents were passed to upper management for review, but they didn't read them. I've been there a few weeks but last week upper management noticed the difference and informed me. Until then I didn't know it was different for me. – aaaaaaaaagirl Jul 27 '15 at 18:36
10

So they changed the T&C /Benefits between your offer letter and your joining?

If the conditions where in writing I would talk to a lawyer about your options.

Id view this as a breach of trust (if not contract) and would start looking for another Job.

Basically this job is over and you need to treat it as such.

  • Yes, and the benefits are still advertised on their recruitment page. I think a lawyer would be overkill, what I have in writing prior to signing is vague and from my manager, they'd say he didn't have the authority. The breach of trust is what concerns me most, as even if they rectify this, I might feel uneasy. This behaviour implies a lack of empathy from the company and if that's correct it'll be a string of events, not just this. My manager thinks, as he confirmed to me today I'm not the only unhappy person, that things may improve. The work itself is really cool so it'd be sad to leave. – aaaaaaaaagirl Jul 27 '15 at 18:48
4

I would not trust a company that changed benefits on me after the contract was agreed. I might make allowance if I was convinced the change was due to an honest mistake (e.g. people one pay grade up get free parking, and that perk was accidentally included in my contract) but unless the change was minor I would feel free to change my mind and accept a different offer.

It sounds like you still have another open offer. Given the situation you are ethically entitled to back out. When making your decision, you may want to take into account your concerns about the company's honesty. If you do decide to stay, it's reasonable for you to ask for some adjustment to the contract. They may say no, of course.

  • See my comment on Pepone's post regarding trust. It was a benefit for all, removed from all. The other offer is fantastic benefits wise but this job is much more interesting, and much closer to my long term goals. I really hope its just a clumsy, poorly executed way of solving one particular problem (which can be solved with far less draconian measures) and not indicative in general of their behaviour towards their employees. – aaaaaaaaagirl Jul 27 '15 at 18:49
4

I would approach your manager with a written letter, stating: "The change in benefits that the company is not meeting its obligations under the contract I signed. I would like to rectify this situation. I would like to either have the benefits reinstated, or renegotiate my compensation with the goal of compensating me appropriately for the lost benefit. Please let me know when we can have a meeting about this issue."

Give it two weeks. If you get nothing:

"I am sorry, but the company has failed to keep its obligations to me per our contract, and has not responded to my attempts to meet to rectify this situation. I can only take this to mean that there will be no attempt at bring the contract back into compliance. Therefore, I am considering this contract canceled by your actions, and will no longer be expecting the contract to be fulfilled."

Then leave. No notice, no explanation (other than the above letter).

A company that pulls this maneuver won't be around to give you a reference after you're done with company B, anyway.

  • I know my manager well from a previous job, so spoke to him directly about it today, so don't need to write to him for him to take action. As I'm on probation I can walk away with no notice at any time, but I really like the work and its a rare job. – aaaaaaaaagirl Jul 27 '15 at 18:59
  • I agree with everything but the two weeks bit. The company is a startup and should be able to address this issue within a day or two at the most. Also, with another offer still available the OP would want to resolve this earlier rather than later. Personally I'd give them 48 hours. After that I'd walk. – NotMe Jul 27 '15 at 21:59
  • @NotMe - You're probably right. If it can't get settled in 2 days, it probably won't get settled in 2 weeks, either. Just my personal "threshold." – Wesley Long Jul 27 '15 at 22:29

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.