Thursday

Nanny Debates Leaving Early for Great Job Offer

Received Thursday, July 9, 2009
Perspective and Opinion on ISYN I have been actively looking for jobs saying that I can start in September. I haven't had much luck except I met a family in the past week who is very interested in my services and who are paying excellent money with excellent benefits! The problem is they want me to start the 2nd week of August. While I want to stick with the family until September, I feel I kind of have to do what's best for my future. The job market is tough right now and this is a great offer. I feel so torn. If I quit on them early, in August, they will be stuck without childcare until September and also, what if they end up not liking the daycare?? Another issue is I'm taking vacation the 1st week of August--I'm afraid if I give notice they wont pay me for my vacation (even though it's in a contract). I am so torn. Any advice??? Thanks in advance.

26 comments:

cali mom said...

I think the best way to handle this is to tell your current family about the new job offer, and that you will need to leave them early in order to accept the job. And that, since you are leaving early and breaking your contract, you do not expect them to pay you for the one week of vacation time or to give you any severance pay. That is, if you want to remain on good terms with them and be able to use them for a reccommendation in the future. You can't expect to have your cake and eat it too, and taking a week of paid vacation only to annoubce afterwards that you're not coming back (because you spent that week working for another family and earning pay from them as well?) would be exactly that.

DCareananny said...

I agree with Cali mom.
I think you should take the job.

nyc mom said...

I agree with CaliMom. I think you should take the new job as I agree it sounds like a great opportunity. Give notice and be honest. It is a month away so the current family can hopefully arrange some kind of bridge childcare. However, since you would be leave them in the lurch for 2-3 weeks, it would be reasonable to not take the paid vacation and/or not expect severance. (Though it doesn't sound like she would be double dipping with vacation unless I'm misreading. It says she would take vacation first week august and start with new family 2nd week.)

You mentioned your contract entitles you to paid vacation. Does it also obligate you to any terms re length of employment, quit date, notice, etc that you would be violating?

Keep in mind that you have just met this new family and the job is a month away. Regardless of how positive they sounded, a lot can change between now and then. They could easily chooose to go with a different candidate, change terms at the last minute, end up not being so great. Don't burn any bridges with your current family as it is very possible you will need the reference.

OP said...

Op here....actually most of my original posting i left on meebo was cut out so the whole story isnt shown on here. Both families are going to be on vacation the week of July 27th so that is why I am taking my vacation that time too. So they will already be away. And I wouldnt start this new job until August 10th or soon after that. Also what was cut out is the whole daycare situation thing. Its a daycare that even isnt open yet, it is opening in September. They have paid a deposit already to get them in but its not a definite thing that they are going to be getting in. The thing is though, that's not really fair to me. I cant wait for them to make up their minds come September . Its up in the air still but I have to think about securing a job in case they do actually go ahead with the daycare thing. I dont want to be scrambling to find a job in this crappy job market/economy and this is a really good offer that I have gotten. I guess I will resend my whole posting so everyone can see the whole thing that I wrote.

Marypoppin'pills said...

OP
I thought your Post looked incomplete but I didn't see any remnants of where it was cut-off... usually I can tell something is missing. Sorry that happened, sometimes MEEBO acts up on us.

Former Nanny said...

I do agree that you have to do what is best with you. Have you spoken to the family at all when you begun your search about what would happen if you found a job that needed you earlier? I once had a position where the family put their house up for sale, and all they could tell me is that they wanted me to stay until they sold the house. Well we all know houses can take forever to sell, or can sell shortly after listing. They told me that they would like for me to stay until they were ready to move, and then when they gave me the closing date, I could just make that my last day. Sadly, that didn't really work for me because I need stability, and when an awesome job came up, I had to take that one, and leave this family early. I really liked them, (not just the baby, but the parents) and I had to explain to them that the likelihood of me finding a great position again in this economy was slim, so I had to take it. They were left without care, but they ended up making it work out, and I moved on. I do think you need to do what is best for you. They could hire a temp. nanny. Could you ask the new family if you could family share for the last few weeks, so they both had care? Not sure how that would work, but that's something else to think about. If they are a good family, they will understand your situation, and not want to see you left out in the dark. Good luck!

Kaitlyn and Daniel said...

You need to take the other job if that's what you feel is best for yourself. Nannying positions need to be treated, most of the time, like any other position. They are the parents, so the responsibility lies on them, not on you. That being said, I also don't think you should ask them to pay you for your vacation if you're leaving well ahead of when you said you would. If you're going to be making more money then it won't matter in the long run anyway.

lilly said...

Do what you have to do. Because if someone better comes along for them, you'll be out of a job before you know it.

mom said...

Everybody is right. You should take the new job, and you are not obligated to put your life on hold while they wait until the last minute to see if they are going to keep you or let you go.

I really like the way Calimom phrased what you ought to say to your current employers. I'ts the RIGHT thing to do. The right thing isn't always the most fun or most lucrative...but its always the best choice.

Good luck. Let us know what happens!

jen said...

You need to think about meeting the needs of your future employer now, not your past employer. Don't lose this opportunity.

jen said...

one more thing: a week of paid vacation is part of her salary. you don't forfeit that particular benefit merely for leaving a job two weeks before it's over. that is an annual benefit, and the value of that paid week was earned over her entire year of service. if anything, she would have to forfeit 1/26th of the week's salary. beyond that, it's her entitlement to receive.

Village said...

You have to do what is best for you. Give the current employers notice as soon as you have a contract with the second family starting August 10, or whatever the start date it. The first family can use babysitters till the day care opens.

Go to your new job guilt free. You are right. You can't stay on call for your current family.

mom said...

But OP,
If your new job really starts on the 10th, you should give your notice to the old family by the
10th of July, which is in 2 days.

Just a Suggestion said...

Do you have any friends currently between jobs (Lord knows I do). You might want to ask them if they would be willing to temp for your current employers. Find out, then have an open conversation with your employers, but stick to your guns that you can't pass on this position. Offer to train your friend to be an appropriate fill in until their daycare arrangements kick in. It will make sure they are not left in the lurch and you are doing them and a friend a favor.

Wicker Park Nanny said...

Take the new job. Think of numero uno. Don't be fooled, the family you are working for now would make this kind of decision based on their needs without factoring you in and you should do the same. They'll survive without you, but you might not survive if you don't have a job.

It's only 2 weeks.

WTF? said...

I don't have time to read all the responses, but I think you should do what's best for you. You know that's what your current family would do if the need arose.

fox in socks said...

I definitely think you should do what's good for you, meaning take the new job even though it starts before the date that you (seemingly) have agreed with your current employer that you would leave. I say "seemingly" because I think this may have been left out of your original posting. From the way you're speaking about your situation, it seems you made an agreement with them not to leave until a certain date in September.

I think cali mom explained well how to speak with them about this situation. I strongly agree that you need to forfeit your upcoming vacation pay as a show of goodwill since you are breaking the agreement that you made with them. Furthermore I agree with mom that you need to give them at least 2 weeks notice, preferably longer, since you are leaving them in the lurch. This will probably not sit well with them since it sounds like you already promised them you would be there through a certain date in September.

One other thought . . . it's a bit unclear what you're saying about whether the daycare will work out or not. Are you suggesting the family wants you to stay on to see if the daycare will work out? If they want you to remain available until it's clear that the daycare is working out, they need to pay you through that period of time.

The other option to explore is whether there is any flexibility in the start date with the new family. Maybe they want you to start then, but they have some wiggle room? You never know until you ask.

Also, I agree with being wary of the new family. Until you have an offer in writing you cannot know that it is definite.

Let us know how things turn out!

go for it said...

I don't agree that you should forfeit your vacation pay. As jen said, that is time you have accrued over the course of the year. If it were me, I wouldn't push it if the family said they didn't want to pay me, but I wouldn't say anything upfront. Would you still be working the following week?
Also, I think Just a Suggestion had a great idea- see if you can get a friend to fill in for you, and use that as your "offer of good will"
If these are reasonable people you are working for, they understand why you need to leave, and they will understand that you might not be able to wait until their preferred date to take a new job.

JacksMom said...

On the vacation pay:

Jen is absolutely right! Vacation pay accrues over the course of the year - several hours each pay period. Think of it as money in the bank. Regardless of the circumstances or timing of her leaving, that money is owed to her without question.

Now, unused sick time is a different question - any unused sick time is forfeited (without pay) when a person leaves their job.

fox in socks said...

The last two posters who point out that vacation pay is accrued over the year are correct about that fact in and of itself. However the point about it being accrued over the year is moot because she is seemingly breaking her contract with the family prior to the year or prior to her official finish date, thereby forfeiting benefits accrued.

More importantly, she is going to have to give them less than 2 weeks notice now it seems. This is a major breech of a work agreement, and is another reason why vacation pay would be forfeited.

If OP voluntarily brings up the idea of forfeiting her pay it brings in a bit of goodwill on her part.

cali mom said...

It also occures to me that IF the new family actually makes an offer, to see if they have any wiggle room in their start date BECAUSE, if they are decent people themselves, they should appreciate the fact that you don't want to leave your current employers in the lurch, and in fact, they should NOT want you to just ditch all prior commitments without a second thought. If they really WANT someone to do that, and if it doesn't occur to them that they could just as easily be the next ones getting ditched, the're jerks and you probably would hate working for them. So if they can make their start date a week later and your current family can deal with you leaving a week earlier, everyone can be fairly satisfied with the arrangements.

go for it said...

fox in socks-

I'm not sure that she is actually leaving prior to her "official finish date"- I doubt there is such a date in the contract (especially because in at-will states, you can quit at any time, and I don't believe that would affect your vacation pay- I could be wrong). Also, the end date is unclear, as it sounds like the family wants to keep her on stand-by in case the daycare doesn't work out. Obviously OP cannot sit around and wait for them to make up their minds. And yes, it is not very much notice at this point. That's why I thought it would be a good idea to offer a recommendation for someone who's available to fill in.

op said...

OP here. I wouldnt be giving them less than 2 weeks notice. I would be giving them at LEAST 3 weeks notice, but probably more than that. This new family does not have flexibility on the start date. They have a baby nurse and she is starting a new position on August 10th. So, that is that. My bosses do NOT have a set date that I am ending my job they just said "were putting them in daycare in september". This daycare hasnt even opened yet, it will be open sometime in September. So, there isnt a set date, unfortunately but in the meantime, I have to start the interview process bc nanny jobs are very, very hard to find these days. My search has been grueling and I CANNOT afford to be out of work, even for just a week or so. Regarding the vacation--THEY are taking vacation that week and going away........this is why my vacation is that time. I didnt request it. Furthermore, in my year with them I have taken no vacation time and never called in sick once!!!!!!!!So, I strongly think I should get paid that week regardless of when I leave. Anyway...thank you for your input, I have gotten really great advice. I am telling the family I work for on Monday about this new position and just being upfront and honest about my concerns. Weve always had open communication so I think they should be a bit understanding and I do have a friend who has offered to help them until they go into daycare. Thanks

Wicker Park Nanny said...

Let us know how it goes OP! I love to hear the results!

cali mom said...

OP, that's great you found the new job. Lucky you! Since your end date was more up in the air than I thought based on the original version of your post, I think it's fine that you should take that vacation time and get paid for it after all. It seems a bit unreasonable of them to expect you to hang around and be available *just in case* they decide they don't like having the child in that daycare. So go for it. I wish I could get so lucky.

fox in socks said...

OP, please come back on and tell us how things went. We all love to hear the endings! Thanks.