Commuting-When is it worth it?
June 21, 2010 8:09 AM Subscribe
I’m considering applying for a job that would significantly lengthen my commute and want to know how to weigh the pros and cons and get some feedback about whether it is worth it.
posted by mjcon to Work & Money (28 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
The situation: I currently have a job, and am generally pretty happy there. I’m thinking of applying for another job that has a significantly longer commute.
Major pros of my current job include: I have OUTSTANDING coworkers and work for a very good agency. My job duties are closely related to “my field”, this is very interesting and rewarding work. The pay is fine, but nothing spectacular. My commute is nearly non-existent.
Major cons of my current job include: I’m a contracted employee, contracts get renewed annually. Every year, there is a very real possibility it won’t get renewed (I don’t worry about this much, I’m young and single and have a decent “rainy day” fund) Even though my employer is excellent to work for, we’re all contractors and the funding source is very involved and very difficult to work with. Job duties can change very quickly and without notice if the funding source says so. Right now, things are very ok, but over the past few years, the job has definitely gone through phases that were terrible and there is nothing to prevent the terribleness from returning. There is limited growth potential within the organization.
The potential new job: It is actually in “my field” instead of just closely related, and I think I would absolutely love it. I’m quite qualified, so I think I have a decent chance of at least getting an interview. It pays more, but not so much more that the money is a major motivating factor. The employer is rumored to be good to work for in general, but it is probably 100 times larger than my current employer, so at a department level, I have no idea. There is significant growth potential with the employer and they are very stable. This is a position that would look good on my resume, better than where I am currently.
The major con is that it is a 1 hour commute on a two lane highway. This is in Wisconsin, so we have winter, but probably not much traffic. If this position was local, I would absolutely apply for it in a heartbeat, but I have never had a significant commute before and don’t know how much this impacts life and how to weigh these pros and cons. I know it is fine to just apply without knowing for sure that I want the position, but it requires letters of recommendation, so I want to know for sure I want this position before I ask people to write these for me. Assume moving closer to the job is not an option for the next few years at least. I don’t have significant home responsibilities, just a dog. Tell me about commuting. Is it worth it for the right job? How do you know whether it is worth it?