Bait and switch job offer - what to do?
July 6, 2009 4:17 AM Subscribe
What should I do when the job I agreed to take isn't the one I'm actually doing?
posted by bashos_frog to Work & Money (15 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
The situation is this: (sorry for length)
I'm a software developer, and I was contacted by a recruiter for a company that seemed to be interesting. They're making money, growing (100+ people, incl. 15+ devs) etc.
The first two interviews seemed to be all small-talk (which should have been a warning sign), but when I pressed and got some details, it sounded to me like the job was going to entail a lot of maintenance on a complicated codebase, and not too much building new stuff, which is what I wanted to do. So I told them my feelings, and they brought me in for a third interview with the CIO during which they finally laid out some details about their plans, technology etc.
It sounded like they actually did have some new initiatives to work on coming up, and they were making me a decent offer during a time where my independent practice was suffering from lack of clients paying their bills. Also, they're a high-traffic site, and I figured I'd learn something about scaling and performance from people smarter than me. Plus the usual options BS - "we're a year and a half out from an IPO..."
So I took the job.
Two days after I was hired, that CIO was fired.
For a couple of weeks, I've seen nothing being done but maintenance on some of the shoddiest code I've ever seen. "Quick and dirty" is the rule of the day.
The site does do volume, but it is totally jury-rigged, and I've seen them have to shut down parts of it to keep other parts going. Security issues abound.
They do seem amenable to cleaning stuff up, but it is like attacking the NYC sewer system with a toothbrush.
For someone who takes a lot of pride in his work, even being made to read this code is frustrating.
Lastly, management is very weak - there is very little direction from above, so I'm left to refactor stuff at random, it seems.
Now, I'm wondering if I should contact the recruiter who pushed me into this, since she at least has something to lose if I quit.
Or should I keep my mouth shut, take the paycheck and look for another job?
Or should I talk to my manager (or at least the person I think is my manager, since they're really unclear about structure) about maybe getting a little more work in areas I prefer?
Money is tight, but it wouldn't be too hard to switch, I think. However, there is an opportunity here to make a big improvement, if I can get enough help to make the cleanup effort realistic.