I'm a newly hired science grad and I don't like my current work. It has only been a week, but I was forced to take this job as there are no responses to my applications; they require experience. My parents were pressuring me to get a job. I am overqualified and the job is really not what I expected.

The short story is that I am depressed with my current work, and with a very low salary. I know that I don't see myself improving in this job, plus I want to redirect my life. However, all the jobs I want requires experience and there are no entry level jobs available in the field.

I'm not enjoying my work life and I want to live the saying "work in the job you want and you'll never work again". I'm stressed out and dont see any future in it. I want to quit as soon as I get a job offer which is actually inline with my degree. So:

  • How do I ethically resign after working less than a month?
  • Is it ethical to apply for other jobs while currently employed?
  • Do they hire people who are already employed?

I would like to hear your advice.

  • 1
    I have removed the shouting (upper case) from your question and tried to reformat to make it easier to read. Please let me know if the question still carries your intent.
    – Jane S
    Aug 21 '15 at 4:29
  • 2
    "Do they hire people who are already employed?" - Not aware of a company whose policy is to only hire unemployed persons. But I suppose it's possible?? Normally you just tell a new company "I can start in 2 weeks-1 mo after the offer" or similar.
    – Brandin
    Aug 21 '15 at 5:33
  • @all: OP is quite obviously new to the workplace, there's no need to abuse him for lacking experience or familiarity with concepts that most of you already know. We all started somewhere so be nice and consider this an opportunity to enlighten someone rather than berate him.
    – Lilienthal
    Aug 21 '15 at 8:35
  • @Jack I've assumed US in my answer but can you clarify your location (country/state)?
    – Lilienthal
    Aug 21 '15 at 8:43
  • 1
    In my opinion it is ethical to resign from any job whenever you want. A better question might be, how to resign after a month without burning bridges... Aug 21 '15 at 18:24

First, in most cases resigning so shortly after starting is unlikely to go over well, unless they're thinking of firing you anyway but that doesn't seem to be the case here. Additionally, it is much, much easier to find a new job when you're currently employed. It signals that you can work in an office environment, you're building experience and you're usually less stressed during an interview and come across as les desperate.

The saying you mention corresponds to the idea of a "dream job" but unless you are financially independent you are not going to find that. Every job will have downsides or require you to spend time doing stuff you'd rather not do. That is not to say that you can't like your job and you want to find one where the good (vastly) outweighs the bad, but put the idea of a dream job out of your mind right now: you'll be a lot happier.

Given that, my advice is to just tough it out for now. Frankly speaking, you give the impression that you simply need to adjust to working life. Unfortunately your halcyon days of college are over and the sooner you accept that the better. You're entry-level so depending on your field you're very likely to be stuck with low-level work until you build experience and prove to management (or potential new employers) that you can perform well at more demanding and interesting tasks.

In closing, your title question is misleading: in this job climate and given your statement that there are no entry-level jobs in your field you're very unlikely to find a new position within several months that you'd actually enjoy. I don't mean to discourage you but you need to be realistic about what jobs are available to you at your current level of experience.

To tackle your add-on questions:

How do I ethically resign after working less than a month?

There's no ethical problem here, you're employed at-will. Like I said, you risk coming across as dishonest and burning a bridge but this kind of blip is generally short enough to leave off your resume without much impact on your hiring chances. If word got out you risk being marked as a job hopper if you turn it into a pattern (multiple jobs of less than a year in length within the span of 2-5 years).

Is it ethical to apply for other jobs while currently employed?

That's what everyone does. In the US people usually don't even announce that they're looking for fear of reprisal. Employees usually announce that they're leaving two weeks in advance which is called their notice period. If you have a contract (most US employees don't) it might state a different notice period so keep that in mind.

Do they hire people who are already employed?

As I mentioned above it's much easier to get hired if you are currently employed.


While it's admirable to want to "work in the job you want and you'll never work again", for most people it takes some time to actually get to that job. So definitely don't just up and quit until you've had another offer, unless this job becomes so difficult that it impedes your ability to seek other employment or otherwise conduct your life. Even if you aren't having the kind of time you'd like, you are gaining experience that does have some value (and also a paycheck).

It's not only ethical to apply for other jobs while employed, it's the norm. It would be completely unreasonable to expect working people to take on the risks of unemployment just to seek a new position.

What you should not do, in my opinion (and others will likely have varying takes on this), is work on those other applications during work hours unless you're on break, on vacation, et cetera (this includes searching for jobs, submitting applications, taking phone calls from potential employers, and so on).

  • How do I ethically resign after working less than a month?

Just like you would resign from any other job: By handing in a letter stating your resignation to the next date allowed by your contract.

  • Is it ethical to apply for other jobs while currently employed?

You should never quit your job unless you already secured another job.

  • Do they hire people who are already employed?

Yes. In fact many companies prefer to. When someone is unemployed, there is usually some reason why they lost their previous job, and that reason might be something which might be a problem with the applicant.

  • "You should never quit your job unless you already secured another job" - while generally good advice to follow, I can't agree with "never" - there are multiple reasons you may wish to take a break from working and, with enough savings available, there's no reason you can't in the right circumstances. For the most part, though, I'd agree.
    – Jon Story
    Aug 21 '15 at 10:08
  • The salary is very low i dont think i may never be secured financially no matter what. My salary is way below minimum and I live in asia which means relativel much lower than minimum Aug 21 '15 at 11:53
  • @JackD.Ripper, just because your salary is low now doesn't mean it always will be. But the truth is that most entry level jobs do not pay well. You need to gain some experience to be valuable to a company. Quitting after a month in your first job is a sign of a very poor work ethic. It signals that your first response to anything negative is to run away. Since all jobs have negative aspects, this is a very bad thing to signal to potential employers.Time to grow up and learn to cope with less than ideal. Ideal only exists for a very few people and they had to work very hard to get there.
    – HLGEM
    Aug 25 '15 at 14:09

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .