Trapped!

(28 Posts)
Flora88 Sun 16-Dec-18 11:39:34

I am not happy at work, to be honest I never have been. I wanted another job from my first day, but I stuck it out.

The reasons I don't like it are it's too stressful, and not the line of work I want to be in. It's having adverse effects on my health now, and I know I need to get another job.

My problem is actually having the ability to go to an interview and find other work. I have been at my current employer less than two years, and they have made clear they will sack an employee with less than two years service if they are found to be looking for other jobs. They are allowed to do this as employees cannot claim unfair dismissal before 2 years, and the company argues they don't want the employee knowing company secrets and wasting time being trained if they are going to leave.

So that means a job search would need to be secret. However, they do not allow holiday to be taken without 2 months notice so I cannot take annual leave for an interview without an absurd amount of notice.

We are only allowed to work from home in exceptional circumstances, and if we are found to leave the house during that day we could be disciplined or dismissed. A woman worked from home and popped out to the shop for 20 minutes, she was seen and given a warning and never allowed to work from home again. The company can also tell if we are online as we have a timer software on our laptops. This monitors our lunch breaks, what time we start and end, when we are 'idle' (going to the loo) etc.

If I faked a sickie and was seen out, I would almost certainly be fired. The company does not pay sick pay, but they are ultra strict about sickness.

So I'm asking you all for advice. I feel trapped, as if my only option is to quit.

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LadyWithLapdog Sun 16-Dec-18 11:49:23

This a ridiculous. Is any of this written down in your contract? Or just ‘the way things are’ and office gossip?

Flora88 Sun 16-Dec-18 11:52:27

The notice for annual leave is in my contract, as are the rules about working from home and sickness.

The points about looking for another job resulting in dismissal isn't in my contract, but there are lots of points about company secrets so they may arue it's linked to that.

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FuckingHateRain Sun 16-Dec-18 11:53:52

Oh dear!!! They ll get rid of you if they find out you're looking for a job? So you're not even on LinkedIn ?

You have to give two months notice for leave?

Where are you? In U.K.? What industry are you in?

This is pretty barbaric? Can you afford to give notice?

Flora88 Sun 16-Dec-18 11:56:35

Yes I'm in the UK. I can't say too much about the industry as it's a bit outing

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Flora88 Sun 16-Dec-18 11:57:22

I'm worried if I give notice it will be hard to find other employment, as supposedly it's easier to find work if you're in work

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FuckingHateRain Sun 16-Dec-18 11:59:09

Yes maybe it depends...you can always say you had to give notice in order to be allowed to progress your career
You on LinkedIn? Are you headhunted at all?
Do you have a feel for how marketable you are? Can you say anything at all about the industry you are in?

Flora88 Sun 16-Dec-18 12:21:21

I'm not on Linkedin, though maybe I'll make an account.

I know I could find another job, as I have transferable skills and have worked in several industries before this. To be honest I don't want to stay in this industry as it's not for me, but the skills I have can be applied to similar careers if that makes sense.

As for being headhunted, my current company works with all the recruiters in my city, and the recruiters would give them a heads up if one of their employees was looking for another role. This happened to a colleague and I should have included it in my OP, as this is another huge obstacle.

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LadyWithLapdog Sun 16-Dec-18 12:26:28

How can a recruitment agency do that? They’d have a “contract” with you, to find you a job, not to prevent your company from losing staff.

Flora88 Sun 16-Dec-18 12:29:12

Not sure, but I've come to learn they're 99% snakes and liars. They care more about the relationship with their client as they're the ones who actually pay them. I got this job through a recruiter and he told me so much crap, I realise now it was all BS.

Plus if they inform their clients they're about to lose an employee, they can then get an early start on finding them a new candidate and earn more commission.

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Damia Sun 16-Dec-18 12:32:35

What's your notice you have to give to leave your job? You could stay a bit saving up as much as possible. Then give a month's notice or whatever. Then start job hunting so you'd have the month plus whatever money saved up to find one. Id use sick leave for interviews at that point.

LadyWithLapdog Sun 16-Dec-18 12:35:40

Gosh, that environment doesn’t sound too healthy. The way things are going, though, don’t crash out with no-deal smile LinkedIn might be an option. Maybe sign up with a middle name, or initial only, if you think your employer is likely to be trawling through it. I’ve never used it so I don’t know if you can change the settings and limit who can see your posts.

Flora88 Sun 16-Dec-18 12:36:36

@Damia 10 weeks

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Polarbearflavour Sun 16-Dec-18 12:41:58

That sounds bizarre and possibly illegal? I would love to know what company this is. What’s the turnover rate like?

Personally I would get signed off sick with stress and job hunt.

Flora88 Sun 16-Dec-18 12:44:36

It's all legal I think, especially as most of us have been there less than two years.

Turnover is low because most can't afford to quit without another job, or risk being fired while looking for one. The only people who tend to leave are those quitting without a job to go to, but they can afford to take a few months out.

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FuckingHateRain Sun 16-Dec-18 12:45:24

LinkedIn is how most headhunting takes place but you will be found out OP. Only do it when you know you re leaving

To be honest if you're that confident in finding a job I'd just give notice. Could you perhaps get in touch with some key contacts beforehand to see what's out there?

Just keep in mind this time is usually dead

Really really don't worry about what to say to future employer in case you give notice . You come across quite confident so after Jan I'd give notice and start with job hunting

Note also that LinkedIn has a setting that lets agents know you're interested.... so you're automatically more visible x

EATmum Sun 16-Dec-18 13:06:06

Could you block book a couple of weeks of leave for late Jan (or as soon as you can), and then job hunt in a targeted way in the new year, aiming for interviews in the period you’ve booked.

Applesandpears23 Sun 16-Dec-18 13:07:25

Can you book a few days holiday in a couple of months to do some jobs around the house or go to an event or something and then try to arrange interviews on those days nearer the time? That’s what people who are relocating do.

Flora88 Sun 16-Dec-18 13:08:10

I could do, but if I don't line any interviews up I will have used half my leave for the year already! And I can't cancel once it's booked without 2 months notice.

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Chewbecca Sun 16-Dec-18 13:10:47

Why not request interviews outside your normal hours? I have interviewed at 8am and 6pm in the past. I don't think badly on the candidate who requests it.

Flora88 Sun 16-Dec-18 13:21:15

I have tried to request interviews at the beginning/end of the day before and not had much luck, most employers don't want to work outside their own hours as a favour to a candidate. They don't owe me anything I suppose.

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Polarbearflavour Sun 16-Dec-18 13:21:44

It sounds completely mad that they would rather have unhappy staff working there than leaving. confused

And that you have to book leave 2 months ahead and your every move is monitored.

Polarbearflavour Sun 16-Dec-18 13:23:25

How dare you leave your job OP! I’m just finding it really hard to comprehend. After you leave can you tell us the name so we can boycott them?

Flora88 Sun 16-Dec-18 13:24:01

I agree, it's mad, but they like to say they have a low staff turnover and it takes a while to train people up. From their point of view, losing trained staff is expensive and loses the company money in recruitment and training costs

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Polarbearflavour Sun 16-Dec-18 15:34:46

That’s part of being an employer though, dealing with recruiting. I’ve resigned from so many jobs, I’ve never cared. It’s just a job. confused

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