I had a job interview on Friday for a promotion at work. I was offered the job later that afternoon.
I will become a manager, instead of a main grade worker. I have an existing commitment to go to college every Wednesday afternoon, which in my current team my boss says is OK and I make up the hours during the rest of the week.
The promotion is for another team, but the same company. I was advised not to bring up my commitment at the interview, and when I was telephoned to be offered the job I totally forgot to mention it because I was too excited!
I will obviously discuss this at work tomorrow, but I wondered if anyone can tell me: can they retract the job offer when they find out about my college commitment?
I am in the UK, and a member of a union, if that makes any difference.
Thanks in advance.
In the U.S., they can retract the offer for any reason they want. In practice, most companies understand that some people have other commitments and work around it if they really want you which it sounds like they do. I have two small children and they come first. That takes up way more time than you are describing and managers have never said anything about it because many of them are in the same boat and we have no choice when we push people aside to run out of the door at a certain time. I have had plenty of coworkers that have gone to school at night as well. Someone would have to be a world class asshole to object to that especially if it is only one night a week.
I assume those are almost universal workplace traits however I have no idea how this plays out in unions in the UK.
Going to school during work hours is pretty much unheard of in North America. You go to school on your own time, after work, and may get reimbursed if what you are studying is relevant to your job, and if you pass the course.
I seriously doubt that any progressive company would retract a job offer based upon your willingness to further your education.
I think the key will be will the college education advance your career IN the company? If it’s education for a degree that isn’t relavent to your job or any other job you may possibly get in the company it may be problematic.
The other thing is did you apply for the transfer or you were offered it? In my experience if you are given a transfer or promotion and you don’t take it, it usually is the last time a company will offer.
My instinct is that if the new manager gets snarky about your Wednesday course, then you are probably better off not taking the job.
I suggest that you talk to your current line manager, explain how worried you are and let them sort things out for you.
For non-UK dopers, taking a ‘day release’ course subsidised by the employer, is not particularly unusual. It used to be pretty common in areas like telecoms, engineering etc.
In Spain the EGT (general countrywide labor law) establishes that any worker can study during work hours so long as he doesn’t have work-related tasks pending; there are no legal provisions about going to class, though. Most companies have some sort of policy regarding this; for some, the policy is “tough beans,” while others even give partial reimbursements on courses that aren’t directly job-related on grounds that “anything that keeps your brain in shape is good for us.” In this case, since the company has already allowed you to take that flextime you’d have what’s called “acquired rights:” you can finish the courses since you already had permission to accomodate them.
I have no idea what UK law or your own employer say about acquired rights, but asking your current manager for advice sounds like a good idea. He may know the new boss better than you and know which is the best way to approach this with him. I also think the new boss should have asked about this kind of thing since it’s not that unusual, I’ve had jobs where about half the production workers were studying something at the university level or a foreign language (political science, law and history were very popular, partly because you can take them via long-distance education and take advantage of the permission to study at work).
Thanks so much for the tips. In the event, I worked out how I wanted to express the necessary details, ran it past my line manager who gave it the OK, and talked to the new line manager, who said it was fine also. Happy Lo
Interestingly, I was advised by my line manager to withhold the details that I am studying every Wednesday until after I was offered the job…ah well. Sorted now, cheers.