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How do I give a 12-week notice? (Or should I?)

Big DookieBig Dookie Smells great!Houston, TXRegistered User regular
edited May 2009 in Help / Advice Forum
For the last few years I've been working and going to school, and now I'm about to graduate in two weeks. I started interviewing at different companies last semester, and at the very end of 2008 I was offered a really great position that I would have been dumb not to accept, and I did. The only catch is that I'm not starting until August (I have to go through a special training/orientation program that all new grads have to go through, and it only happens twice a year). I've held off on telling work so far, and as far as I know nobody here knows about it yet.

However, I'm getting antsy about waiting so long to tell work, and I'm wondering if it's ethical to wait so long to tell them while knowing that I already have another job waiting for me. At the same time though, I'm worried that giving them so much advance notice will give them an excuse to just go ahead and let me go, which would be a disaster for me as I still need the income until I start my new job. I had resolved to tell them sometime around graduation, but now I'm still not sure. So my question is a two-parter:

1) Should I go ahead and give a notice at work that I'll be leaving at the beginning of August? Is it still too soon, or am I obligated to go ahead and say something?

2) If so, how do I go about doing this? Do I just hand in the standard resignation letter with "two weeks" replaced by "twelve weeks," or is there some other more acceptable way of doing this?

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    DaedalusDaedalus Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Never give notice unless you're in a position where you can afford to lose the job that day.

    Daedalus on
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    japanjapan Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    If you're graduating, they're going to know that you'll be looking for something else.

    I'd say make sure it's understood that your long term plans aren't to stay with your current employer, and hand in your notice nearer the time.

    japan on
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    DoxaDoxa Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Employers request at least 2 weeks notice for quitting. I wouldn't do a 12 week because in my past experiences of my two weeks notice my employer has given me hell. If you need to keep the job it may be wise to delay it until 2 weeks because your employer may just fire you early once he finds a replacement.

    Of course I am talking about experience with high school/bottomfeeder McJobs. It may change with more respectable lines of work.

    Doxa on
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    noir_bloodnoir_blood Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Yea, don't say anything yet.

    Depending about how you feel about your current job, give them 2 weeks. Or give them nothing. Obviously think long term, of whether you would like to use them as a future reference.

    noir_blood on
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    Big DookieBig Dookie Smells great! Houston, TXRegistered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Daedalus wrote: »
    Never give notice unless you're in a position where you can afford to lose the job that day.
    Yeah, see, this is what I'm worried about. I really can't afford the drop in income just yet. Though I don't really think they would drop me, there's always that possibility, especially in this economy. I had convinced myself the "right thing" was to tell them very early on, but now I'm wondering if that's the right thing for me or just for them.

    Edit - Okay, say I waited. I do want to keep a good relationship with my current job for future references. But if I waited until June to say anything, knowing that I already had the job lined up months ago, would that hurt my relationship with them?

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    wallabeeXwallabeeX Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Not if you don't tell them.

    Give two weeks notice and tell them you got another job. It's not their business to know, and they probably won't ask.

    wallabeeX on
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    RUNN1NGMANRUNN1NGMAN Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Big Dookie wrote: »
    Daedalus wrote: »
    Never give notice unless you're in a position where you can afford to lose the job that day.
    Yeah, see, this is what I'm worried about. I really can't afford the drop in income just yet. Though I don't really think they would drop me, there's always that possibility, especially in this economy. I had convinced myself the "right thing" was to tell them very early on, but now I'm wondering if that's the right thing for me or just for them.

    Edit - Okay, say I waited. I do want to keep a good relationship with my current job for future references. But if I waited until June to say anything, knowing that I already had the job lined up months ago, would that hurt my relationship with them?

    No, that's what they expect. You'll be fine. They can read the writing on the wall, I'm sure they have an idea what is going on.

    RUNN1NGMAN on
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    dispatch.odispatch.o Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Depends on your duties. It's sort of a judgment call, how well do you know your boss?

    When I quit at a restaraunt I told them I would be leaving because my boss was cool, and I knew they'd want me to train whoever came into the kitchen. Got a good reference for it and whatnot.

    If your boss is uncool, do not do this.

    dispatch.o on
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    Big DookieBig Dookie Smells great! Houston, TXRegistered User regular
    edited May 2009
    dispatch.o wrote: »
    Depends on your duties. It's sort of a judgment call, how well do you know your boss?

    When I quit at a restaraunt I told them I would be leaving because my boss was cool, and I knew they'd want me to train whoever came into the kitchen. Got a good reference for it and whatnot.

    If your boss is uncool, do not do this.
    It's kind of a weird situation, in that my main boss is right above my position and she would probably be completely fine with it. However, though she's the supervisor for our department, her boss is the one who really handles everything in terms of hiring and firing, so he's the one I would really have to worry about. I'm not so sure he'd be fine with it.

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    exisexis Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Two weeks notice should give your employer plenty of time to fill your position. If they weren't capable of getting someone hired and up to speed in that time (and couldn't cope without the position filled), they would have specified in your contract that you need to give more notice. They would have absolutely no right to bitch to potential future employers about you following your contract.

    exis on
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    Big DookieBig Dookie Smells great! Houston, TXRegistered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Yeah, good point.

    Man, I was ready today to hand in my resignation letter (had it all printed out and everything), but then got a bad feeling and didn't go through with it. I'm glad I asked you guys now, because the response seems to be pretty unanimous that I should wait.

    One other question though on that note. I do know that my future employer will be going a background check on me sometime in July to make sure my resume checks out and everything. Should I be worried about them calling my job right now and spilling the beans?

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    rickoricko Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    It's unlikely a company will put a potential employee at risk just to get some background info. Employers realise that job transition is a sensitive area, and will keep your well being in mind.

    That said if they did get in contact with your current employer, your boss doesn't really have a right to question you about it. You could always just say your details are on a job agency database and that you're getting harpooned if they had any qualms about it.

    You've got future job security and that's all that matters really, stop worrying.

    ricko on
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    mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Big Dookie wrote: »
    Yeah, good point.

    Man, I was ready today to hand in my resignation letter (had it all printed out and everything), but then got a bad feeling and didn't go through with it. I'm glad I asked you guys now, because the response seems to be pretty unanimous that I should wait.

    One other question though on that note. I do know that my future employer will be going a background check on me sometime in July to make sure my resume checks out and everything. Should I be worried about them calling my job right now and spilling the beans?

    Yes.

    I was going to say to give your current employer more like 4 weeks of notice. Makes you look good, while still being short enough that by the time they'd even be able let let you go (by having a trained replacement) you could afford to lose the income.

    At this point I'd say to make sure you tell them before they find out from this call.

    Though you may just want to tell them you'll be seeking other employment, but not that you've already found it. As somebody said, I'd hope any company employing a college student would assume this was going to happen, but you never know.

    mcdermott on
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    KakodaimonosKakodaimonos Code fondler Helping the 1% get richerRegistered User regular
    edited May 2009
    What type of job is it? I'm betting if it's the type of job a college student has, 2 weeks is plenty of notice. Like everyone else has said, just keep it under wraps and don't give them the notice until 2 weeks away.

    The background check is probably not a reference check, but a prior conviction/credit check. Is your current job even related to your new job? If not, I doubt they'll check at your new job.

    Kakodaimonos on
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    jclastjclast Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Two weeks is the standard for a reason. If you want to give more I would not go higher than four weeks.

    jclast on
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    ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Yeah, give four weeks if you're feeling exceptionally generous.

    Thanatos on
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    Big DookieBig Dookie Smells great! Houston, TXRegistered User regular
    edited May 2009
    What type of job is it? I'm betting if it's the type of job a college student has, 2 weeks is plenty of notice. Like everyone else has said, just keep it under wraps and don't give them the notice until 2 weeks away.

    The background check is probably not a reference check, but a prior conviction/credit check. Is your current job even related to your new job? If not, I doubt they'll check at your new job.
    It's a pretty okay job. I mean, the pay is garbage compared to what I will be making at my new job, but it's certainly a few steps up from burger-flipper. I'd hate to lose the income in the meantime, that's for sure. And no, it's basically in no way related to my new job.

    But yeah, I think you guys are right, waiting seems to be the best course of action. I think four weeks would be a good middle-ground, as it'd be plenty of time for them to find someone else but still too little time for them to bother letting me go. Thanks for the advice guys, I appreciate it.

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    oncelingonceling Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Your new job requires a "special training program for recent graduates", hired you 8 months ahead of time and has yet to clear up your background checks and such?

    Weird.

    Just like everyone has said, wait.

    onceling on
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    VThornheartVThornheart Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Also, be careful... I wanted to give a really long resignation period to my last (er, current, for the next week) employer for reasons that I detailed in an old H/A... but some potential employers find that suspicious, and won't hire you if you're doing that. To an outsider, it looks like you might be dragging your feet, or waiting for a counteroffer or for something better to come around.

    In my case, I ended up resigning myself to just giving the normal 2 weeks' notice... and it was hard to tell my employer when it finally came down, but it's better for everyone. You won't be a crutch for them to lean on artificially for as long, and it'll force them to come to grips with it... and future employers won't disqualify you for wanting such a long leeway period.

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    saggiosaggio Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Are you the CEO of a Fortune 500 company? No?

    Then you don't need to give more than 2 weeks notice. See if you can take your remaining vacation time during that two weeks, too.

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    tsmvengytsmvengy Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Also, be careful... I wanted to give a really long resignation period to my last (er, current, for the next week) employer for reasons that I detailed in an old H/A... but some potential employers find that suspicious, and won't hire you if you're doing that. To an outsider, it looks like you might be dragging your feet, or waiting for a counteroffer or for something better to come around.

    In my case, I ended up resigning myself to just giving the normal 2 weeks' notice... and it was hard to tell my employer when it finally came down, but it's better for everyone. You won't be a crutch for them to lean on artificially for as long, and it'll force them to come to grips with it... and future employers won't disqualify you for wanting such a long leeway period.

    The difference is he already has a start date given to him by the new job. I would definitely be wary if I tried to hire someone and they said "oh I can't start for 12 weeks because of my old job."

    The OP is asking whether he should give notice now or wait until 2 weeks before his other job starts to give notice.

    OP, as has already been said you should wait. From the sound of it it wouldn't be a problem if you gave longer, but you never know. Honestly your job doesn't sound like the kind of job that would make you leave immediately. Two weeks is plenty of notice for any job.

    tsmvengy on
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    DaedalusDaedalus Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Two weeks is a sort of compromise. It keeps you out of a terrible situation if they have you leave that day (which happens often), while giving your employer enough time to wrap up your service with them (e.g. by them having you document the system you've been working on or what have you).

    Besides, if you're a current college student, it probably won't surprise them that you'll leave after you graduate, so don't worry about it.

    Daedalus on
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    kaliyamakaliyama Left to find less-moderated fora Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Big Dookie wrote: »
    dispatch.o wrote: »
    Depends on your duties. It's sort of a judgment call, how well do you know your boss?

    When I quit at a restaraunt I told them I would be leaving because my boss was cool, and I knew they'd want me to train whoever came into the kitchen. Got a good reference for it and whatnot.

    If your boss is uncool, do not do this.
    It's kind of a weird situation, in that my main boss is right above my position and she would probably be completely fine with it. However, though she's the supervisor for our department, her boss is the one who really handles everything in terms of hiring and firing, so he's the one I would really have to worry about. I'm not so sure he'd be fine with it.

    You owe your employer nothing. Two weeks is plenty.

    kaliyama on
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    Big DookieBig Dookie Smells great! Houston, TXRegistered User regular
    edited May 2009
    onceling wrote: »
    Your new job requires a "special training program for recent graduates", hired you 8 months ahead of time and has yet to clear up your background checks and such?

    Weird.

    Just like everyone has said, wait.
    I agree, it is sort of weird. However, this particular employer makes it a point to do their on-campus interviews and stuff in the fall, and these interviews usually include the May graduates who won't be finished for another eight months. They just try to get them early is all, and I'm going into one area of the company that has a very specific schedule for start dates and stuff. They have a policy of starting background checks and moving expenses and stuff 60 days before the start date, but it sounds mostly like a bunch of checks to make sure I didn't lie on my resume and actually finished out the year and got my degree, stuff like that.

    It is kind of a unique situation I know, but not unusual for this specific area in this specific company. It has presented a conundrum in terms of my current employer though, as you guys can see. I think you are all right though, it's just too early to say anything yet. I'll probably wait until sometime in July.

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    The Crowing OneThe Crowing One Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    I think you're in the right mindset that you know when your new start date is, and you know that you'll be leaving the company.

    Formal notice? Absolutely not.

    Here's a question: Are you absolutely necessary for the day-to-day running of the company? I ask because if this is some integral position and you'll be leaving, giving large notice can be seen as a favor so that they can begin getting applicants in. It's also pretty rare.

    If you have a good relationship with your supervisor, you might want to go ahead and informally let them know. "I graduate in May and I was offered a position at x which I have accepted, because I don't want to hide anything from all you awesome people" is one thing. Handing a letter stating "I quit in 12 weeks" is another entirely, and is probably to be avoided.

    You can't go wrong with a 2-week notice. It's by far the easiest way to deal with the issue.

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    kharvelankharvelan Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    In a situation like this I think giving a few weeks notice is fine.

    If you give 4 weeks, that's hugely generous. Normally this will not be seen negatively especially if you offer to train your replacement. This is a great way to network and not burn a bridge.

    I'd go with 3-4 weeks notice, that should be sufficient and there's no way they would get rid of you for doing that unless you have been a bad employee prior.

    kharvelan on
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