During the summer I negotiated for a raise and a big part of the raise package was a doubling of target bonus. I was planning to move jobs once bonuses were paid out. Because of HR delays, bonuses have been delayed over a month past last years date. When bonus schedules were finally announced, I accepted an offer at a new company with a start date precisely two weeks after the bonus payout. A week before payout date, HR sends out email saying bonus payouts will be delayed two weeks. Now I am faced with either forgoing bonus which I worked for all year, and which should have been paid already. Or taking my chances and quitting with no notice in hopes of getting the bonus before squeaking out the door and burning a lot of bridges in the process. I'm not sure what is morally or legally reasonable here.
closed as off-topic by JasonJ, IDrinkandIKnowThings, gnat, Masked Man, Rory Alsop Feb 25 '17 at 10:02
This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:
- "Questions asking for advice on what to do are not practical answerable questions (e.g. "what job should I take?", or "what skills should I learn?"). Questions should get answers explaining why and how to make a decision, not advice on what to do. For more information, click here." – IDrinkandIKnowThings, gnat, Masked Man, Rory Alsop
In most cases, you are not obligated to give notice unless you sign some sort of documentation agreeing to do so. It is customary, and courteous to provide a two weeks notice.
In regards to the bonus situation, I feel for you and have been there myself -- it sucks. Based on what you described, I would not count on getting the bonus ever even if you stay with your current employer versus the new gig. Bonus money is typically not guaranteed ( unless you have in writing that you get x bonus no matter what ) and is usually tied to a performance metric allowing the company to either not pay it out or to pay out a reduced amount.
My advice is to cut your losses and move on to the next gig.
It's your reputation. Are you willing to risk it over this amount of money? For me this would be a tough question if my bonus were doubled.
I'd suggest feeling out the hiring manager at the new organization about this. Starting on the agreed date is going to lead to zero notice as bonus delays have put you between a rock and a hard place. Some managers would be receptive to letting this slide. My plant has a new hire that is in this exact situation and had his hire date slid a month.
If you do quit on no notice, apologize to your boss and be sure to be upfront about these HR delays are the primary factor in this, that you accepted the offer on X with a start date of Y so you could provide reasonable notice without it personally costing you $Z,000 to do so. I think that this will be the best chance of mitigating a hit to your reputation.
I'm not a big believer in two-weeks notice. It's one of those things that has become culturally expected but realistically has little place in our current employment culture.
There are cases where I do think notice is appropriate (when you're working for an at-will company):
- Training your replacement is really important and will take that long.
- Your job must have a body there to do it and they need that long to get someone there.
- The company has been very good to you in particular.
If I've got a great relationship with an employer, I'll think about 2 weeks but more likely give a week. Believe it or not, a week is typically all that's needed because knowledge-transfer is the main reason they want you there and a week is almost always enough for that.
But look at the other side of it, remembering that employment is always a two-way street. You're not a servant, remember.
Would the company give you 2 weeks notice if your position were eliminated?
If the answer is yes, maybe they do deserve the notice. In all but one of the places I've worked, the answer has been no. And they certainly wouldn't give you notice if they were terminating you.
And there's another reason not to give (much) notice. Many companies won't even accept it. There are potential security concerns for a departing employee as well as concerns of productivity.
The real risk here is of burning bridges and that's pretty small. These days companies typically just verify whether or not you've worked there. Having a personal reference of a supervisor would be good but if you don't end up with that (especially if you wouldn't anyway) than it's not fatal.
What you do have is cause. HR has been delaying and delaying. Whether they call it a bonus or not, it's not like it's extra pay. You'd have given notice if you'd been paid on time. It's HR that's not leaving you much choice.
But the bottom line (for me) is this: If you CAN give notice, do it. It doesn't hurt. If you can only give a week, do that. If you can't, you may be burning a bridge but that's not the end of the world, especially since you'll already have a job. If it were me, that's what I would do. Notice if I can but not worrying if I can't. Do what you can to get the bonus AND your new job. Just don't accept any more delays.
And as I said, don't sweat any hit on your reputation. They're not giving you what was promised. While it's not guaranteed, it's a promise that they're breaking. That alone gives you cause to quit.
The "it's not guaranteed" is a lame excuse by the way. Your next week of work isn't guaranteed either. It doesn't change the fact that promises were made.